UK: Supporting Your PCC Post-election

Last Updated: 7 June 2016
Article by Ashleigh Freeman

Supporting your PCC post-election

As the dust settles on the elections, newly elected or re-elected PCCs minds will no doubt immediately turn to the important decisions to be made over the coming weeks and months, such as setting the police budget and publishing a police and crime plan setting out their vision and priorities for policing. PCCs will want to start implementing the promises and pledges that formed the basis of their election campaigns.

It is important to keep in mind at this time that so many aspects of the work of PCCs are set out in legislation and subject to legal process. The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner ("OPCC") will play a key role in reminding PCCs of the statutory obligations and other legal considerations associated with decisions to be made over the next few months.

One such decision likely to be high on the PCC's agenda will be the appointment of a Deputy PCC. Some re-elected PCCs may wish to reappoint their former deputy. Some newly appointed PCCs may have given election pledges as to their deputy. However, whilst the Deputy role does not have to be advertised, it is not as simple as appointing the man or woman the PCC wants for the job.

Under Section 18(1) of the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 ("PRSRA") each PCC may appoint a Deputy PCC and may arrange for them to perform many of the functions of the PCC. This is done under a scheme of delegations. There are however numerous restrictions on who can be appointed as a Deputy PCC (set out at S.18(6) and in Schedule 1, paragraph 8). The most relevant of these is perhaps the restriction on any constable, special constable and anyone employed by the police or member of staff of a PCC being appointed as deputy. There are also a number of requirements and potential disqualifications relating to citizenship, bankruptcy, criminal convictions and corrupt or illegal election practices. Deputies must be 18 or older.

It will be important for the OPCC to ensure that any potential candidate for Deputy PCC does not fall under any of the restrictions set out in the PRSRA.

Once a potential candidate has been identified, a PCC must then notify his or her Police and Crime Panel ("PCP") of the proposed appointment, providing the name of the person who he or she is proposing to appoint, the criteria used to assess the candidate's suitability; why the candidate satisfies those criteria; and the terms and conditions on which the candidate is to be appointed.

The PCP must then review the proposed appointment and hold a confirmation hearing – a meeting of the panel, held in public where the candidate is to appear and answer questions, before providing a report to the PCC within three weeks of the notification, with its recommendation as to whether or not the candidate should be appointed. This report will be published. Despite the formal process the PCC may at the end of the day accept or reject the PCP's recommendation as to their Deputy but must notify the PCP of his or her decision and might expect to have to justify the decision publicly given the PCP recommendation will be made public.

PCCs may also not be aware that the PCP must be notified of other senior appointments, namely the Chief Finance Officer and the Chief Executive as set out in paragraph 9 of Schedule 1 of the PRSRA.

The appointments of other members of the PCC staff, including the appointment of an Assistant PCC (which is not a statutory role unlike the Deputy PCC), are not subject to the same statutory requirements under the PRSRA. However, the PCC should note that all members of its staff are politically restricted and as such an Assistant PCC cannot be an elected local authority member.

There are some key fundamental principles that can be drawn from the process of making deputy and staff appointments that are applicable to the many decisions that a PCC will be making in the coming weeks and over the course of his or her term:

  • There is a formal legal structure that applies to much of the PCC's work – a PCC may have made various pledges in the course of his or her election campaign that they will be keen to fulfil once in post. In supporting a PCC in doing so, it will be important to ensure that all legal requirements are understood and complied with.
  • It is sometimes better to wait before making public announcements – Whilst PCCs will have a desire to engage with the public right from the outset, it may be better to avoid making public announcements on such key matters until it is certain that all the requirements of the legislation have been met. Similarly in respect of public announcements, it is vital that a PCC understands the extent of their role and the matters for which they are the decision-maker before expressing opinions publicly on matters affecting their police force. They should ensure that they do not make, or have not made, public announcements that could be construed as having prejudged a matter upon which they are deciding e.g. on matters relating to the conduct of the Chief Constable.
  • There is often an obligation to give reasons for decisions – as demonstrated above by the requirement for a PCC to provide reasons to the PCP for proposing a particular candidate for Deputy PCC, a PCC is often required to justify the decisions he or she makes. Even if there is no express requirement in the legislation, there can be a public law expectation to provide reasons. It will be important for the OPCC to ensure that a robust decision making framework is in place.
  • Demonstrate commitment to the standards of public life – Newly elected PCCs in particular may be unfamiliar with the ethical standards expected of public office holders. The seven principles of public life require that a PCC must act solely in terms of the public interest, with integrity and objectivity, must be accountable to the public for their decisions and actions, should act and take decisions in an open and transparent manner, should be truthful, and should ensure that their staff follow these principles.

PCCs operate in a high profile environment, often subject to intense public scrutiny and debate. Keeping the above principles in mind when making decisions should allow a PCC to have confidence in the decisions they make and will assist in avoiding or minimising the risk of legal challenge.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

In association with
Related Topics
Related Articles
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Registration (you must scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of

To Use you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions