Government announces 28-day police bail limit

News Posted: January 6, 2015

The Home Secretary, Theresa May, has announced that the use of police bail is to be limited to 28 days.

She confirmed proposals which would mark the end of the system under which police are able to keep people on pre-charge bail for an unlimited length of time.

Under the proposed reforms, bail would be capped at 28 days and officers would only be permitted to extend the period in exceptional circumstances. To do so would require the approval of a magistrate or an officer with the rank of chief superintendent or higher.

Law Society President Andrew Caplen said “it is a welcome safeguard that all extension requests will have to be heard before a court every three months. The Law Society has been calling for a statutory limit on the length of time the police are able to keep suspects on bail, often with conditions, before they are charged with a criminal offence. Not only does keeping someone on police bail interfere with their liberty; it also means that police investigations can be protracted and slow, making the justice system less efficient and with a negative effect on complainants and witnesses.”

The proposals, should they go ahead, are likely to impact on 1000s of individuals who are currently on police bail in the UK.

Should you have any queries regarding the above please contact our Criminal Department.


We are proud to hold the following accreditations

Enquire Now