Teachers' blog


【The Judiciary of the UK(1)】

(Contributed by Brian)
* Sovereign / Monarch: Another name for a King or Queen.
* Privy council: A body of advisers appointed by the King or Queen of England.
* Judge: A public officer appointed to decide cases in a law court.
* Magistrate: A civil officer who administers the law, especially one who conducts a court that deals with minor offences (i.e. speeding fines etc) and holds preliminary hearings for more serious ones. (i.e. murder etc)
* KC/QC: This stands for queen’s counsel. (or KC, if it is a king on the English throne, this stands for King’s council) A Barrister who is ‘invited to take silk’ and has expert knowledge within the law. They may also preside as judges if required to do so.
* Barrister: A person called to the bar and entitled to practise as an advocate, particularly in the higher courts.
* Solicitor: A member of the legal profession qualified to deal with conveyancing, the drawing up of wills, and other legal matters. A solicitor may also instruct barristers and represent clients in some courts.
* Claimant: A person making a claim, especially in a lawsuit or for a state benefit.
* Defendant: An individual, company, or institution sued or accused in a court of law.
* Prosecutor: A person, especially a public official, who institutes legal proceedings against someone.
* Jury: A body of people (typically twelve in number) sworn to give a verdict in a legal case on the basis of evidence submitted to them in court.
* Criminal case: A court proceeding in which a person who is charged with having committed or omitted an act against the community or state is brought to trial and either found not guilty or guilty and sentenced.
* Civil case: A noncriminal lawsuit, usually involving private property rights. For example, lawsuits involving breach of contract, probate, divorce, negligence, and copyright violations are just a few of the many hundreds of varieties of civil lawsuits.
Legal structure
Lord Chief Justice and Lord Chancellor
The Lord Chief Justice has been the overall head of the judiciary. Previously he was second to the Lord Chancellor, who is the governments representative in the legal system who ensures fairness and the judiciaries independence from the state.

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