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The Magistrate's Court 

The Senior Magistrate sits as the judge in the Magistrate's Court, which has jurisidction to deal with both criminal and civil cases. The Court also holds some limited appeal powers relating to the decisions of the licensing Justices.

The work of the Magistrate's Court is varied in nature and practice and procedure is primarily determined by the Administration of Justice Ordinance, the County Court Rules 1981 (as amended), the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Ordinance and the Magistrates Courts Rules 1981 (as amended).

In criminal matters, the Magistrate's Court has jurisidiction to sentence and try all cases except those that are indictment only offences. For further information relating to the Magistrate's Courts' criminal jurisidction please see the relevant section in the drop down menu or click here.

Like the Supreme Court, the Magistrate's Court holds civil jurisdiction, but this jurisidction is limited by statutory provisions contained within the Administration of Justice Ordinance. Further detail regarding the civil jurisdiction of the Magistrate's Court may be found by clicking here or via the relevant drop down menu.

A large part of the civil work that the Magistrate's Court undertakes relates to family law. The Magistrate's Court may deal with both public law cases (applications brought by the Crown) and private law cases (applications brought by private individuals), determining matters relating to the welfare of the child. For further detail about the Magistrate's Court family jurisidction please see the drop down menu or click here.