Judicial appointments commission

The new judicial appointments commission has a wider membership consisting of 15 members with powers to select applicants.

The Judicial Appointments Commission is an independent body that selects candidates for judicial office in courts and tribunals in England and Wales, and for some tribunals with UK-wide jurisdiction. It is not involved in the selection of magistrates or judicial office-holders for the UK Supreme Court but it is involved in the selection of the Lord Chief Justice, Heads of Division, Lords Justices of Appeal and the Senior President of Tribunals.

The Constitution Reform Act 2005 introduced a new Judicial Appointments Commission with a wider membership consisting of 15 Commissioners who have the power to select applicants for appointment. 

The former Judicial Appointment Commission had no say in the actual selection of candidates and its role was similar to monitoring the selection process and handling complaints from candidates whose applications had been turned down.

The new Commission was set up to maintain and strengthen judicial independence by taking responsibility for selecting candidates for Judicial Office out of the hands of the Lord Chancellor and making the appointment process clearer and more accountable.

Under the The Constitutional Reform Act 2005, the JAC’s statutory duties are to:

  • select candidates solely on merit
  • select only people of good character
  • have regard to the need to encourage diversity in the range of persons available for judicial selection

About us | Judicial Appointments Commission

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