Lay people in the legal system G151

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  • Created by: bananaaar
  • Created on: 15-04-14 17:48
How many law magistrates sitting as part time judges in magistrates court?
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How do magistrates generally sit?
As a bench of 3, a single magistrate has limited powers (can issue warrants, warrants for arrest and conduct EAH's)
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Who else work in magistrates court?
District judges who are qualified lawyers, and they can sit on their own.
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Formal requirements for being a magistrate?
There are no formal requirements , howver a person must fulfill the following criteria: be aged between 18 and 65, live or work near the Local Justice Area they are allocated to, be prepared to commit to sitting at least 26 half days per year.
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Disqualifications of being a magistrate?
Those with serious previous convictions or a number of minor offences, undischarged bankrupts, police officers, traffic wardens, full-time members of armed forces, anyone whose work is incompatible with duties of magistrate (probation employee etc)
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Qualities that a magistrate must have?
Set out by Lord Chancellor in 1998 and are: maturity and sound temperament, committment and reliability, good character, understanding and communication, social awareness and sound judgement.
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How often do magistrates have ongoing training?
Every 3 years.
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How often are magistrates appraised and why?
Every 3 years to ensure they remain competent to sit.
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Retirement of magistrates?
Retirement age is 70, however their names are added to the supplementary list which means they can no longer sit in the court but can continue with some administrative duties.
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How can a lay magistrate be removed?
under s11 Courts Act 2003 the LC can remove a lay magistrate for incapacity, persistant failure to meet competency standards or if they are deemed to be neglecting their duties. A magistrate can also be removed for misbehaviour.
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What were district judges previously known as?
Stipendiary Judges
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What qualifications do District judges need to have?
Qualified as a barrister, solicitor, or fellow of CILEX or be a deputy district judge. Must have 5 years experience in law.
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Diversity stats with district judges?
25% women, 4% from ethnic minority, majority between 35-55 yrs old, less representative than lay magistrates.
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What is each bench of magistrates assisted by?
A clerk, also known as a Legal Advisor.
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What qualifications does a senior clerk have to have?
qualified barrister/solicitor for at least 5 years.
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Where is the clerk's duty set out?
s.28 Justices of the Peace Act 1979.
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What is the clerk's duty?
To guide the magistrates on questions of law, practice, and procedure. The clerk is not meant to assist in the decision making and should not normally retire with the magistrates when they go to make their decision.
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Specific duties of clerk?
Deal with route administrative matters: Early administrative hearings (Crime and Disorder Act 1998), issue warrants for arrest, extend police bail and adjourn criminal proceedings.
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Qualifications of a jury?
Aged between 18 and 70, registered on the electoral register, be a resident in the UK for 5 years since the age of 13.
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Where are qualifications for juries set out?
Juries Act 1974 as ammended by Criminal Justice Act 1972
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When was the independence of the jury established?
In [Bushell's] case 1670 where several jurors refused to find D guilty, so judge threatened to lock away the jury until they had found D guilty. Jurors appealed and said judges can have no influence over jury's decision.
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Modern day use of juries?
Sit in crown court, only hear 1% of criminal cases. They can be used in civil cases in the High Court over defamation cases and personal injury cases. Also they are used in coroners court when there has been a suspisious death (Princess Dianna)
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Alternatives to trial by jury?
Trial by single judge (used in civil cases as they are fairer and more predictable), panel of judges, judge plus lay assessors (judge and 2 lay people decide together, used in Scandinavian countries), mini jury (smaller number of jurors, e.g 9 .)
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What are juries supposed to be?
Representative of our society.
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How many jurors on criminal trial?
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How many jurors on civil trial?
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


How do magistrates generally sit?


As a bench of 3, a single magistrate has limited powers (can issue warrants, warrants for arrest and conduct EAH's)

Card 3


Who else work in magistrates court?


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


Formal requirements for being a magistrate?


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


Disqualifications of being a magistrate?


Preview of the front of card 5
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