Court System 

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  • Court System
    • UK Courts
      • 1. Supreme Court
        • Hears appeals from the Appeals Courts
        • Settling major disputes over human rights and judicial review
        • major disputes over the accurate meaning of law
        • Disputes between British and Eu law
      • 2. Court of Appeal
        • Hears appeals from criminal courts and High Court
        • dealing with disputes from lower courts over accurate meaning of law
        • appeals involving human rights
      • 3. High Court
        • Hears appeals from County Courts
        • Cases involving large sums of money
        • Cases where there is a dispute with some part of governement
      • 4. Crown Courts, County Courts, Magistrates' Courts and Tribunals
    • European Courts
      • European Court of Human Rights
        • Hears appeals from citizens from all parts of Europe
        • Bases decisions on European Convention on Human Rights
          • most European countries are signatories
        • NOT part of European Union!
        • Sits in Strasbourg
      • European Court of Justice
        • Based in Luxembourg
        • Highest court of the European Union
        • Roles
          • 4. Settles legal disputes between EU member states
          • 1. Settles disputes between European Commission and a member state
          • 2. Interprets meaning of EU law
            • Decides how it should be applied in specific cases and to individual countries
          • 3. Hears appeals from individuals and groups who feel their economic or social rights under EU law may have been abused within their own country
        • Judgments are binding on all member states including UK
        • Cases
          • Factortame case 1991
            • Laws of UK (in this case, the Merchant Shipping Act) could not conflict with EU law (iin this case, the common fisheries polciy)
              • effectively this transferred much sovereignty to EU law
          • Job seeker's allowance 2004
            • Court ruled that citizens of any EU state could claim jobseeker's allowance in UK
          • Retirement Age 2009
            • Ruled in favour of UK's right to introduce compulsory retirement age of 65
          • Car Insurance 2011
            • Against EU law for car insurance companies to charge different premiums for men and women
              • Insurance companies have to change their charges
      • Cases
        • Votes for Prisoners 2005
          • UK's denial of Prisoners' right to vote - abuse of their rights
            • In 2011 Parliament voted to ignore this ruling
        • DNA Retention case 2008
          • Against ECHR right to privacy to retain the DNA profile of persons who had not been convicted of a crime
            • Government forced to destroy many DNA profiles
        • Stop and search powers 2010
          • abuse of rights for police to stop and search attenders at demonstrations without anyt vase
            • these pwoers now under review


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