Lord Toulson will return to Supreme Court bench after 72 days of retirement

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By Katie King on

That was quick


A Supreme Court justice who retired from the elite bench in July will be sitting on the court’s second case of the new term.

Managing to keep away from the Westminster court for a grand total of just 72 days (including weekends), former Law Commission chairman Toulson will be sitting alongside Lords Mance, Clarke, Reed and Sumption to hear the insurance law case of Woodman on 10 October, according to an announcement by the Supreme Court team.

Despite no longer being a full-time justice, Toulson is able to do this because he is a member of the court’s ‘supplementary panel’ — a rotating roster of top judges who sit on an ad hoc basis in the country’s highest appeal court. Also in this bank of part-timers are former Master of the Rolls Lord Dyson and Scottish judges Lords Gill and Hamilton.

With these judicial bigwigs dipping in and out of Supreme Court sittings, Toulson will not be replaced with a full-time justice until a number of other benchers reach their statutory retirement dates in 2018. This is so selection of the candidates can be done all in one go, so expect big change at the Supreme Court in a few years time.