Skip to content

Becoming a Magistrate

Body Image - Active Citizens

Magistrates sit on a bench of three people with a Legal Advisor, to hear criminal cases in the Magistrates' Court.

Magistrates' Courts are the first level court in the legal system and there is no jury. Magistrates deal with the majority of criminal cases, but the most serious ones go to the Crown Court. There are three different kinds of Magistrates' court.

Adult Court, Youth Court and Family Proceedings Court. Magistrates deal with a wide variety of cases, from animal cruelty to TV licensing, including: Assault, Harassment Offences, Bail applications and court orders, Burglary, Affray, Criminal Damage, Public Order, Driving and Vehicle offences, Drugs and excess alcohol.

Magistrates do not need any formal or legal qualifications. The legal advisor will guide you in the courtroom and you will be given extensive training.

Before applying to become a magistrate, there are a number of things you will need to consider, including your personal qualities, job and health.

For more information on how to apply to become a magistrate, on the skills and qualities you need and the training involved download the Becoming a Magistrate Information Sheet.

Related Resources