Extension of term of appointment of Attorney General

Date published: 01 July 2021

The First Minister and deputy First Minister have agreed to extend the appointment of Dame Brenda King as Attorney General for Northern Ireland for a period of one year. 


Dame Brenda King’s term of appointment will expire on 30 June 2022.

Notes to editors: 

Notes to editors:

1.  The post of Attorney General for Northern Ireland was established following the devolution of justice responsibilities on 12 April 2010 and the enactment of the Justice (Northern Ireland) Act 2002.

2.  Dame Brenda King was appointed as Attorney General for Northern Ireland in July 2020.  Her term of appointment was initially for one year with the option of an extension subject to the agreement of both parties.

3.  Prior to her appointment, Dame Brenda King was previously the First Legislative Counsel for Northern Ireland. She has over 25 years of experience of drafting primary legislation for Northern Ireland and other jurisdictions and providing legal advice to Ministers on the most complex and significant legal and constitutional matters.

4.  Dame Brenda King was educated at the Queen’s University of Belfast, the University of South Carolina and Cambridge University.  She began her career as a solicitor in a busy legal aid practice in Belfast and has also served as a diplomat, dealing principally with EU law and public international law.  She has a particular interest in international boundary disputes.  She was President of the Commonwealth Association of Legislative Counsel from 2017-2019 which involved working with lawyers in 92 jurisdictions to improve the quality of legislation worldwide. 

5.  Ministers have also agreed to an independent review of the office of the Attorney General and have asked the former Lord Chief Justice Sir John Gillen to undertake this review.

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