In the Media

15% bonus scheme for CPS lawyers

PUBLISHED March 6, 2006

Top Crown Prosecution Service lawyers could be in line for bonuses of up to 15% as part of a new initiative linking their pay to achieving efficiencies.

The 42 chief crown prosecutors in England and Wales could see salary rises of as much as ?13,500 a year.

The scheme, which is not connected to conviction rates, aims to ensure the CPS keeps to budgets and reduces the number of cancelled court hearings.

A separate rewards scheme is being launched for all staff from April.

The annual review of pay and benefits will be linked to an individual's performance.

Performance contracts

The new scheme for senior prosecutors has been drawn up by Director of Public Prosecutions Ken Macdonald QC and CPS chief Richard Foster, in conjunction with management consultants the Hay Group.

It is part of a strategy to promote public confidence in a "changing" prosecution service, said Mr Foster.

"We will be measuring people on outcomes, the difference they have really made, something that the civil service and certainly the CPS has shied away from in the past," he told The Times newspaper.

Prosecutors will each be given a performance contract.

If they fail to meet a number of designated targets they will not be entitled to the bonuses of between 10% and 15% of their normal pay.

"Each CPS area has autonomy over managing budgets and resources," a CPS spokeswoman said.

"Many organisations and companies already reward staff according to performance linked to targets."