|Jurisdiction||All courts and tribunals in England and Wales |
Non-devolved tribunals in Scotland and Northern Ireland
|Headquarters|| 102 Petty France |
|Annual budget||£1.7 billion (gross)|
|Parent department||Ministry of Justice|
|This article is part of the series: Courts of England and Wales|
|Law of England and Wales|
Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service is an executive agency of the Ministry of Justice. It was created on 1 April 2011 by the merger of Her Majesty's Courts Service and the Tribunals Service.
The agency is responsible for the administration of the courts of England and Wales, the Probate Service and tribunals in England and Wales and non-devolved tribunals in Scotland and Northern Ireland. It works from about 600 locations across the United Kingdom.
The Framework Document for Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service says its aim is "to run an efficient and effective courts and tribunals system, which enables the rule of law to be upheld and provides access to justice for all." The courts over which it has responsibility are the Court of Appeal, the High Court, the Crown Court, the magistrates' courts, and the county courts.
The agency is responsible for the administration of all chambers of the First-tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal, together with the employment tribunals and certain other tribunals which the Tribunals Service was responsible for serving, such as the Special Immigration Appeals Commission and Proscribed Organisations Appeal Commission.
The Supreme Court has a separate administration from the other courts of England and Wales, and its administration is under a Chief Executive who is appointed by the President of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom.
Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service remains operationally independent, and the responsibility for overseeing the leadership and direction of the agency rests with its Board, three of whose members are judicial officeholders and one of whom is Senior Presiding Judge. The Chief Executive is responsible for the day-to-day operations and administration of the agency, and is the Accounting Officer for the agency.
The Lord Chancellor is required by section 1 of the Courts Act 2003 and section 39 of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007 to ensure there is an efficient and effective system to support the carrying on of the business of courts and tribunals, and it is to the Lord Chancellor that the agency is accountable, and the Lord Chancellor is in turn responsible for accounting for its operations to Parliament.
Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service is an executive agency, in contrast with the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service which is a non-ministerial government department. However, it is unique in being such an agency and having constitutional accountability to judges as well as the Lord Chancellor. The framework document says that the agency is accountable to the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales and the Senior President of Tribunals. This provides a unique partnership between all three in relation to the effective governance, financing and operation of Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service. For example, where the Board cannot reach agreement, its Chair will refer the issue in question to the Lord Chancellor and the Lord Chief Justice for a decision.
Any amendment of the framework document must be agreed between all parties, and laid before Parliament. Furthermore, the Lord Chief Justice (and the Senior President) is entitled to terminate the partnership if either concludes that it is no longer compatible with his constitutional position or the independence of the judiciary. By doing so, a report will be presented before both Houses of Parliament of that fact, and the governance of Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service will revert to a conventional agency model reporting directly to the Lord Chancellor unless and until a new model is agreed between the Lord Chancellor and Lord Chief Justice or a different legislative framework is put in place.
Money Claim Online (MCOL) is a UK government Internet-based service by Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service for claimants and defendants in England and Wales. It states that it is "a convenient and secure way of making or responding to a money claim on the Internet".The claim must be made by a single claimant against at most two people or organisations, and must be for a fixed amount not exceeding £100,000.
You can make a money claim if you think a person or organisation owes you money and will not pay you back. You’ll have to pay a fee. Before making a claim, contact the person or organisation to try to resolve the issue by discussion or mediation. Your claim, including your name and address, will be sent to the person you say owes you money. They’ll get a chance to respond to your claim.
The service privatised their language interpretation service in 2011, giving a contract to Capita Translation and Interpreting. Figures released to The Guardian in 2016 show that over 2,600 court cases were adjourned because of a failure to provide an adequate interpreter in the previous five years.
From 31 October 2016 these services have been delivered under four separate Lots through the following providers:
Most translation into Welsh and Welsh-English interpretation is sourced through HMCTS’ own Welsh Language Unit.
Statistics on the use of language interpreter and translation services in courts and tribunals forms part of the quarterly Criminal Court Statistics available through the GOV.UK website.
The courts of England and Wales, supported administratively by Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service, are the civil and criminal courts responsible for the administration of justice in England and Wales.
The Tipstaff is an officer of a court or, in some countries, a law clerk to a judge. The duties of the position vary from country to country. It is also the name of a symbolic rod, which represents the authority of the tipstaff or other officials such as senior police officers.
The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass) is a non-departmental public body in England set up to promote the welfare of children and families involved in family court. It was formed in April 2001 under the provisions of the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000 and is accountable to Parliament through the Ministry of Justice. Cafcass is independent of the courts, social services, education, health authorities and all similar agencies.
The Constitutional Reform Act 2005 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, relevant to UK constitutional law. It provides for a Supreme Court of the United Kingdom to take over the previous appellate jurisdiction of the Law Lords as well as some powers of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, and removed the functions of Speaker of the House of Lords and Head of the Judiciary of England and Wales from the office of Lord Chancellor.
Robert John Ayling, also known as Bob Ayling, is a British retired lawyer and businessman who has worked with a variety of high-profile companies and organisations. From 1996 to 2000, he was the CEO of British Airways. He also served as chairman of Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service, Dŵr Cymru, and Dyson. Ayling was awarded a CBE in the Queen's 2018 Birthday Honors List.
The Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) is an independent public body which is responsible for the administration of the courts and tribunals of Scotland. The Service is led by a board which is chaired by the Lord President of the Court of Session, and employs over 1000 staff members in the country's 39 sheriff courts, 34 justice of the peace courts, the Court of Session and the High Court of Justiciary, and at the service's headquarters in Edinburgh. The day-to-day administration of the service is the responsibility of its Chief Executive and Executive Directors. The Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service is also responsible for providing administrative services for the Judicial Office for Scotland, the Office of the Public Guardian, the Accountant of Court, the Criminal Courts Rules Council, and the Scottish Civil Justice Council.
The courts of Scotland are responsible for administration of justice in Scotland, under statutory, common law and equitable provisions within Scots law. The courts are presided over by the judiciary of Scotland, who are the various judicial office holders responsible for issuing judgments, ensuring fair trials, and deciding on sentencing. The Court of Session is the supreme civil court of Scotland, subject to appeals to the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, and the High Court of Justiciary is the supreme criminal court, which is only subject to the authority of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom on devolution issues and human rights compatibility issues.
A court clerk is an officer of the court whose responsibilities include maintaining records of a court. Another duty is to administer oaths to witnesses, jurors, and grand jurors.
Her Majesty's Courts Service (HMCS) was an executive agency of the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and was responsible for the administration of the civil, family and criminal courts in England and Wales.
The Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) is an independent commission that selects candidates for judicial office in courts and tribunals in England and Wales and for some tribunals whose jurisdiction extends to Scotland or Northern Ireland.
There are various levels of judiciary in England and Wales — different types of courts have different styles of judges. They also form a strict hierarchy of importance, in line with the order of the courts in which they sit, so that judges of the Court of Appeal of England and Wales are generally given more weight than district judges sitting in county courts and magistrates' courts. On 1 April 2020 there were 3,174 judges in post in England and Wales. Some judges with United Kingdom-wide jurisdiction also sit in England and Wales, particularly Justices of the United Kingdom Supreme Court and members of the tribunals judiciary.
The Tribunals Service was an executive agency of the Ministry of Justice in the United Kingdom between April 2006 and March 2011.
The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) is a ministerial department of the British Government headed by the Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor. The department is responsible for areas of constitutional policy not transferred in 2010 to the Deputy Prime Minister, human rights law and information rights law across the UK.
Robert John Reed, Baron Reed of Allermuir, is a Scottish judge who has been President of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom since January 2020. He was the principal judge in the Commercial Court in Scotland before being promoted to the Inner House of the Court of Session in 2008. He is an authority on human rights law in Scotland and elsewhere; he served as one of the UK's ad hoc judges at the European Court of Human Rights. He is also a Non-Permanent Judge of the Court of Final Appeal of Hong Kong.
Civilian enforcement officers (CEOs) are either employees or authorised officers of Her Majesty's Courts & Tribunals Service and are responsible for enforcing magistrates court orders. They can seize and sell goods to recover money owed under a fine and community penalty notice. They also execute, in England & Wales, warrants of arrest, committal, detention and distraint. Members of approved enforcement agencies have the same powers as civilian enforcement officers, but are employed by private companies. Both are referred to as 'authorised officers' in law.
Pontypridd High School is an English-medium comprehensive school in the village of Cilfynydd near Pontypridd, in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Wales.
The Judges' Council is a body in England and Wales that, representing the judiciary, advises the Lord Chief Justice on judicial matters. It has its historical roots in the original Council of the Judges of the Supreme Court, created by the Judicature Act 1873 to oversee the new Supreme Court of Judicature. This body initially met regularly, reforming the procedure used by the circuit courts, and the new High Court of Justice but met less regularly as time went on, meeting only twice between 1900 and 1907, with a gap of ten years between meetings in 1940 and 1950 respectively. After relative inactivity, it was eventually wound up through the Supreme Court Act 1981, which contained no provisions for its continued existence, something Denis Dobson attributes to newer bodies which performed the duties the Council had originally been created to do.
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A justices' clerk or clerk to the justices is an official of the magistrates' court in England and Wales whose primary role is to provide legal advice to justices of the peace.
From 1949 to 2005, magistrates' courts committees (MCCs) had overall responsibility for management of the magistrates' courts service within their areas in England and Wales.