The project covers the following questions:
- Explain the jurisdiction, process, and structure of the court in the legal system of the UK and its role in the administration of justice.
- Define different legal methods of research.
- What is the role of institutions in the English legal system?
The Judiciary is the arm of the government which is responsible for governing the justice in the society. For this the government has made a system of court. This system of courts helps the government in resolving the conflict that arise out of operation of laws (Baarman, and et. al., 2015). This involves the application of remedy and the retaliation of the offenders of the law. The courts of United Kingdom are the organization which aims to deliver the justice. Whether by the means of convicting someone for doing the wrong or resolving the disputes that have breached the law. This report gives a brief understanding of the legal structure of the courts in the UK and there is also a brief about the understanding that has been developed while attending the court session.
The magistrate's courts are given the power to try minor offences conducted by the society, while the the more serious offences are referred to the crown courts. There are appellate courts which include the courts of appeal and the supreme court (Bertin and et. al., 2018). To obtain the better understanding of working of UK legal system the court visit has been initiated. The criminal matters are heard by Magistrate's courts. These courts hear the proceedings and are presided by the magistrate's and the proceedings in this court are oral and open for the public excluding the exceptions. The members who are responsible for doing the task of organisation and operations of the magistrate court are explained below:
District judge: They are the judges who are also known as the stipendiary magistrates. These are permanently employed by the ministry of justice. To qualify this position a law degree and 5 years of experience are necessary. They usually hear the long and the complex matters.
Magistrates: In a magistrate's court the cases that are less complex are judged by the magistrates or lay judges. They are the representatives from the local citizens of good character, mature personality and those who have a sound judgement making power (Ricci, Rokach, and Shapira, 2015). They sit in the adult criminal courts. The lead magistrate is also known as the chairman.
Deputy District judges: they are the part time judges paid for the sitting days. They usually sits for 15 days in a year. If the District judge is not available then they play their role
During the visit to the court it was observed that the courtroom activities can be observed from the public galleries. This implementation makes the legal process open and transparent to the public. During the visit their were both the family members and the journalist watching the proceedings of the court. The case that was running was for sentencing the defendant for possession of the drugs with intent to supply of class A under section 4 of misuse of drug act 1977 (Boelens, and Vos, 2014). The judge hearing the trial was a district judge. When the defendant arrived in the court he was directed to be seated in the defendants box. The defendant was little late in arriving at the hearing. Then the prosecuting barrister began with her opening statement. The terms of the case were relatively simple and could be easily understood. The support and the repetition of the judge seemed to be helpful for the jury. The case was not concerned with creating the awareness of the law but was more emphasised on establishing the charge (Rhoads, et. al., 2012). There were three witness which were called by the prosecutor and all of them were the police officer. The court was adjourned after the cross examination of the third witness and the trial was to be continued later on the next day. So the examination for the report was not able to be done in full.
As of the decision after hearing the facts the conclusion that can be brought is that the defendant had breached the law and was not working for the betterment of the society. The defendant should admit the charges that were admitted on him.
Magistrates a judicial beast of burden
As the expression lay people means the engagement of the ordinary and the legally not qualified people. As UK has the history of taking the societal people in the legal system. They becomes the part of the magistrate's court and the crown courts (Chase, et. al., 2012). In this court mainly the maximum cases are heard by the magistrate's. These magistrate's plays a vital part in the in decision making as they have the best knowledge about the society. They are not being paid for their work. They work as a volunteer for the society. They bench consist of the three members.
Qualifications for appointment of the magistrate
The magistrate of the court should be of sound judgement, social awareness, good character and understanding. Some other qualifications that are to be fulfilled for becoming a magistrate are,
- The person should be aged between 18 to 65 years
- The individual should not be bankrupt or insolvent.
- The person should not be convicted of criminal offence.
The recruitment of the magistrate is done by the secretary of the state for justice and the lord chancellor which is further transferred to the local advisory committees (Reichert, and Weber, 2012). The interviews are conducted by the local advisory committees and the selected candidates are then recommended to the presiding judge. The time period for the appointment process differs from the factors such as application numbers.
There are two stages for the person who want to become magistrate's. There is a body of three persons who conduct the interview and are called the local advisory committee. The fist stage checks the contents of the application filed by the applicant (Buede, and Miller, 2016). The knowledge about the society and the knowledge of certain social laws are judged here. The good character and the background of the applicant is checked and judged here. After this the second stage comes that analysis the applicants judicial interpretation aptitude.
The applicant who is applying for becoming the magistrate has to give at least three references of the societal people for the character that he has. References should know that if the applicant has fulfilled the qualities required for the role.
The interview conducted should not be considered as the basis of the appointment for the role of magistrate (Laracey, Paydiant 2013). The score is given to the applicant by the panel and then takes the decision accordingly.
Disclosure about the service
The applicant then has to go through the DBS check that will be arranged by the local advisory committee so that they get ensure that they is no criminal charges or records on the selected applicants.
Then the applicants who are selected are appointed by the lord chancellor on the basis of the local committee. The magistrates have to be present in the court for a minimum 15 days or 30 half days in a year. They does not get the salary they are given the allowances for example travel allowances, rent allowances etc.
The court decides the areas where the magistrate has to be appointed. This depends on the amount of work in that area. Once they are appointed as the magistrate they have to undergone the training programme which is a continuous process (Chang, et. al., 2014). The new magistrate's has to be guided under the leadership of the old ones and their progress is then recorded. They have to go through the various session before becoming the judge of for any case.
Role of magistrates
As the magistrates are called as the justice for peace, they are responsible for providing justice to the society. Over the years the role of the magistrate's have changed with the changing demand of society and community (D'Agostino, and et. al., 2013). The modern summary judicial system is made up by the magistrate's. They deal about maximum part of the cases which are criminal. They also deals in the civil matters. They also sits in the family court dealing with the matter of welfare of the children. The individuals can nowadays directly apply for becoming the magistrates in the family courts.
Magistrate's plays a vital role in the changing society. The magistrate's will always remain in the heart of the UK legal system and will form the important part of the legislation. This statement suggest that the judiciary are not the judicial beast but are the heart of the UK's judiciary.
The visits to courts are always the best part for the student of law. They give them the logic to understand the theoretical concepts and relate them in the real life. If the students are taken more to the practical world then they will be able to retain the provisions that they have learned through text in a much better way (Casillas, Cordón, Triguero, and Magdalena, 2013). The court visits provide them the understanding of the legal system and its functioning. The courts in UK administers the legal system in UK. The visits court would help them understand and will enable them to bring closer to the legal structure of the country. As in the report the magistrate's court was visited in London. This helped in understanding and knowing the structure that is involved in creating the court. The responsibilities that they plays are better understood by this. How the court works and how it takes the decision is understood by going to the magistrate's court (Forster,et. al., 2013). Visiting the court and hearing the proceedings of the case not only gives the insight about the practical knowledge but also helped to understand the legal ethic and regulations that are followed by the barristers and the solicitors. After going through the proceedings it gives the knowledge of how the case is proceeded and how the charges are read out by the judge. Also noticed that people can see the case and can hear the proceedings by sitting in the area known as public gallery.
This type of court visit can help the student in deciding the career path. They can got to know their interest is in which sector which may be criminal or civil (Keeling, and Keeling, EnaGea 2013). This type of visits helps the student in tapering down the career options and are educative for the students to understand how the law functions.
The conclusion can be made from this report in the context that the legal system in UK is governed by the court and there are different court which are working according to their roles and functions. The Magistrate system is the main body on which the whole system of law depends. The visits in the court by the student helps them in understanding the legal procedures and how the legal system works. They also get to know the court's way of doing the work. The magistrates are not the judicial beast of for the society rather they work for the welfare of the community. If you are worried about online assignment help at an affordable budget. Contact our experts.