11/26/2013 03:51 EST | Updated 01/26/2014 05:59 EST

New Brunswick justice minister willing to examine suggestion to merge courts

FREDERICTON - New Brunswick Justice Minister Troy Lifford says he's willing to examine a suggestion to merge the provincial court with the Court of Queen's Bench.

The suggestion was made Monday by Court of Queen's Bench Chief Justice David Smith during a speech to the Moncton Rotary Club.

Smith says both courts handle criminal matters, and by merging the two there would be numerous efficiencies and fewer case delays.

He says the court structure would also be more easily understood.

Lifford says such a change could not be made quickly, but he would be interested in discussing the idea further with Smith.

Lifford says the department is examining many ways to make the justice system more efficient and will add Smith's suggestion to the list.