Intermediaries for Parole Board Oral Hearings

IfJ CPD Courses

Event details


21 Nov 2024


Thursday 21st November
Registration 09:15


Zoom Online
United Kingdom

Booking info

Max participants: 20

Course facilitator(s): Dr Brendan O’Mahony

Course facilitator(s) bio:

Dr Brendan O’Mahony

Brendan O’Mahony is a Registered (Witness) Intermediary and an accredited HMCTS intermediary. He is a psychologist Specialist Member of the Parole Board for England and Wales. He has recently collaborated in exploratory research examining the role of intermediaries in the Parole Board context.

Course requirements: IfJ members

Who is this course for: Intermediaries who would like to understand more about the parole board processes to enhance their work with vulnerable witnesses preparing and/or reading victim personal statements, or for supporting the communication needs of prisoners giving oral evidence. Participants should be experienced intermediaries but are not required to have attended a Parole Board oral hearing.

The course will examine how intermediaries may be involved in the Parole Board context for both victims and for prisoners. It will outline the role of the Parole Board, the oral hearing process, and how the intermediary role may work in practice.

This event is 100% subsidised by IfJ and is therefore completely free!

Course Content:

  • Types of court sentences and how a prisoner may be referred to the Parole Board by the Secretary of State for an oral hearing.
  • The likely contents of a Parole Board dossier for an oral hearing.
  • What happens at a hearing and how witnesses are questioned, and by whom.
  • Types of hearing including video, hybrid and face to face.
  • The impact of adjournments or deferrals on a prisoner and the requirement for timely assessments and reports.

Course aims/objectives:

  1. To understand the process by which victims and prisoners may attend an oral hearing.
  2. To understand the purpose of an oral hearing
  3. To learn who is likely to sit on the panel at a parole hearing, and who else will be in attendance.
  4. To recognise that a Parole Hearing is quasi-judicial and that Panel Chair directions must be complied with.
  5. To discuss the role of an intermediary in the Parole Board Oral Hearing context.

Course method: 

The workshop is run in the form of a small group training. The presenters will present information and will invite high levels of participation and sharing of knowledge and ideas. Prepared slides/handouts guide the process rather than impart information. 

The following materials are provided: 

  • Timetable
  • Powerpoint presentations
  • Guidance for further reading
  • Bibliography

- Participants to log on 15 minutes prior to start of each session.

- It is required that all participants keep their cameras on throughout the workshop.

- Participants to complete online feedback form post workshop.

Cancellation Policy

If you cancel your booking with 14 or more days notice, you will receive a full refund minus a £15 admin charge. If you cancel your booking with less than 48 hours' notice, we are unfortunately unable to offer a refund. However, you may substitute another delegate or transfer to another course by giving IfJ at least 24 hours’ notice.

In exceptional circumstances IfJ reserve the right to issue a full refund. Please inform us at the time of cancellation of your particular reason for cancelling. If you wish to cancel or change your booking, please do so by emailing:

We will endeavour to respond to all cancellation requests within two working days. Refunds will be made using the same method of payment as you used for the purchase and will be paid within seven days of refund confirmation.

Places are limited to a maximum of 20 participants. There is a minimum requirement of 12 participants. If the minimum number is not met, IfJ reserve the right to cancel the course with at least two weeks' notice and a full refund will be issued.