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Complaints about a magistrate or a tribunal member

Complaints about judges should be sent directly to the Office for Judicial Complaints (OJC). However complaints about magistrates or tribunal judges and members should be referred, in the first instance, to the local Advisory Committee or Tribunal President. (The OJC does, however, deal with complaints about members of Tribunals, which do not have a President.)

Complaints about magistrates

If your complaint is about a magistrate's personal conduct, you should get in touch with the local Advisory Committee. Contact details for all Advisory Committees are listed here (PDF 0.09mb, 14 pages). The Advisory Committee may dismiss a complaint, or part of a complaint, if it fails to meet the criteria set out in the Complaints (Magistrates) Rules 2006  (PDF 0.2mb, 22 pages). If the Advisory Committee believes that there may be a case for formal disciplinary action, they will refer the case to the OJC. The Lord Chancellor and the Lord Chief Justice will then consider the evidence and decide what action, if any, should be taken.

The system for handling magistrates' conduct, pastoral and training matters sets out the general procedures including the complaints rules agreed by the Lord Chancellor and the Lord Chief Justice.

Complaints about tribunal members

If you wish to complain about a tribunal judge or member you should contact the relevant tribunal office who will tell you whether your complaint should be sent to the Regional Chairman, Tribunal President or, if there is no Chairman or President, to the OJC.

Your complaint will be dealt with in accordance with the Judicial Complaints (Tribunals) Rules 2006. The Chairman or President will investigate the complaint, and if they believe that there may be a case for formal disciplinary action, they will refer the case to the OJC. The Lord Chancellor and the Lord Chief Justice will then consider the evidence and decide what action, if any, should be taken.

Guidance on handling complaints against judicial office holders within tribunals (MS Word 0.44mb, 15 pages)

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