Lay Magistrates

GemmaCoton
Mind Map by , created over 5 years ago

A Levels Law Mind Map on Lay Magistrates, created by GemmaCoton on 04/01/2014.

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GemmaCoton
Created by GemmaCoton over 5 years ago
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Lay Magistrates
1 Qualification
1.1 Don't require any legal qualifications
1.2 6 Key Qualities
1.2.1 Good character
1.2.2 Good understanding and communication
1.2.3 Social Awareness
1.2.4 Maturity and Sound temperament
1.2.5 Sound Judgement
1.2.6 Reliability
1.3 18-65
1.4 Must live or work near the area which they are going to serve
1.5 Must be able to serve 26 half days each year
1.6 Ineligible if you have a criminal conviction, bankrupt, member of the armed forces, police, close relative of those who work in the Criminal Justice system
2 Appointment
2.1 Widely advertised in public places
2.1.1 Attempts to attract working class people
2.2 Nominations are sent to a local group of experienced magistrates and non-magistrates
2.2.1 Local Advisory Committee
2.3 LAC conduct two-part interview
2.3.1 First: find out personal details and 6 key qualities
2.3.2 Second: given two scenarios to test judicial skills
2.4 Names passed on to Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
2.4.1 Examine list and decide who shall be appointed
2.4.2 Will try to get a balance. E.g. more working class
2.4.3 11 types of occupations of which 15% of the bench has to come from any one of these
3 Composition of the Bench
3.1 Men and Women are equal
3.2 Ethic minorities make up 6% of bench and 8% of population
3.2.1 Under-represented
3.3 Working class are under-represented
4 Training
4.1 In the areas they live
4.1.1 Content set by Judicial Studies Board
4.2 Must learn to:
4.2.1 Manage themselves in preparing for court and their conduct
4.2.2 Work as a team in decision making
4.2.3 Make impartial, logical decisions
4.3 Initial training teaches newly appointed magistrates about the court and responsibilities
4.4 Core skills helps them to develop the necessary skills, knowledge and understanding
4.5 Undertake activities e.g. observing sessions and visiting prisons
4.6 Then serve as wingers
4.6.1 Sitting in actual cases alongside experienced magistrates
4.6.2 Performance monitored
4.7 After gaining sufficient experience they have an appraisal conducted
4.7.1 Designed to check they haver the key qualitites
4.7.1.1 If not they will receive extra training
4.7.1.1.1 LAC can ask the Lord Chancellor to remove those who continue to fail
5 Duties
5.1 Civil
5.1.1 enforcing debts e.g. water, council tax
5.1.2 Hearing appeals against local authorities refusing to grant licenses for alcohol
5.1.3 deciding cases involving children
5.2 Criminal
5.2.1 bail applications
5.2.2 summary trials and some either-way
5.2.2.1 97% of criminal cases
5.2.3 sending serious cases to the crown court
5.2.4 Forming Youth Court panel
5.2.5 Issuing warrents
5.2.6 Sit alongside Judges to hear appeals from Magistrates' Court
6 Retirement
6.1 Must retire at 70
6.2 Can be placed on supplemental list allowing them to perform certain administrative duties
6.3 Lord Chancellor can dismiss them for misconduct
7 Legal Adviser
7.1 Help magistrate
7.2 Lawyer with 5 years experience
7.3 Guidance on the law and legal procedures
7.4 No part in decision making
7.5 Deal with routine court business e.g. extending police bail, granting arrest warrents
8 Advantages
8.1 Local Knowledge
8.1.1 Live or work near the courts
8.1.1.1 Should know the area
8.1.2 However, normally middle class, live in wealthier areas and in practice have little insight
8.2 Cross-section of society
8.2.1 System involves members of the community and provides a wide cross-section
8.2.2 51% are women
8.3 Cost
8.3.1 Cost of replacing them with judges estimated £100 million a year
8.3.2 Trial at Magistrates cheaper
8.4 Training so no completely amatuers
8.4.1 Majority of decisions require common sense
8.5 Legal advisors
8.5.1 Since 1999 magistrates clerks have to be legally qualified
8.5.2 Brings higher level of skill
8.5.3 Gives magistrates access to any legal advice that may arise
8.6 Few Appeals
8.6.1 Very few appeal and if they do it is against sentence not guilt
8.6.2 From 2 million cases there are about 5,000 appeals
8.6.2.1 Less than half successful
9 Disadvantages

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