Lay People

These cards will cover the role of Magistrates and Juries in both the Magistrates Court and the Crown Court.

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Magistrates Jurisdiction- Criminal

Magistrates have the jurisdiction to try summary offences and the majority of triable either way offence (97% of all trials are dealt with at the M.C)

They also have the jursidction to hear Mode of Trial proceedings and preliminary hearings for indictable offences.

They can create sentencing committals to the Crown Court for them to decide a further harsher sentence than the maximum 6 months if they feel their powers are inadequate and the crime deserves a harsher sentence.

They also deal with side matters such as application for bail from the police (bail= the period of time in which a person is released before their trial, there will be restrictions on their bail), and warrants for property and person searches under the Magistrates Courts Act 1980.

Magistrates have the jurisdiction to hear youth and family court hearings. However they will need extra training to be capable of doing this and will have had to have served for 5 years as a JP before doing so.

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Magistrates Court- Civil

Magistrates also have the civil jurisdiction to hear cases in the civil manner, these are:

  • The enforcement of debts owed to utility providers.
  • Unpayed utility bills
  • Non payment of council tax and TV licenses
  • Appeal against the councils refusal of alcohol/betting licenses
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