THE COURT SYSTEM OF ENGLAND AND WALES



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THE COURT SYSTEM OF ENGLAND AND WALES



TASK I. Read the text and translate it:

The most common type of law court in England and Wales is the magistrates' court.' There are 700 magistrates' courts and about 30,000 magistrates.

More serious criminal cases then go to the Crown Court, which has 90 branches in different towns and cities. Civil cases (for example, divorce or bankruptcy cases) are dealt with in County сourts.

Appeals are heard by higher courts. For example, appeals from magistrates' courts are heard in the Crown Court, unless they are appeals on points of law. The highest court of appeal in England and Wales is the House of Lords. (Scotland has its own High Court in Edinburgh, which hears all appeals from Scottish courts.) Certain cases may be referred to the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg. In addition, individuals have made the British Government change its practices in a number of areas as a result of petitions to the European Court of Human Rights.

The legal system also includes juvenile courts (which deal with offenders under seventeen) and coroners' courts (which investigate violent, sudden or unnatural deaths). There are administrative tribunals which make quick, cheap and fair decisions with much less formality. Tribunals deal with professional standards, disputes between individuals, and disputes between individuals and government departments (for example, over taxation).

THE LEGAL SYSTEM IN ENGLAND AND IN WALES.

 
 

TASK 2. Find in the text the English equivalents for the words below.

- общее право;

- решение суда;

- уголовный кодекс;

- гражданский кодекс;

- мировой судья;

- Суд Короны;

- гражданское дело;

- суды графств;

- Европейский суд по правам человека;

- правовая система;

- суд по делам несовершеннолетних;

- правонарушитель;

- насильственная смерть;

- уголовное дело.

TASK 3. Use the information given above to answer the questions.

1. In the United Kingdom, what is the difference between criminal and civil law?

2. What is the most common type of law court in England and Wales ?

3. Name three other types of British courts.

TASK 4. Work in pairs and discuss the folio-wing.

Which courts do you think would deal with:

a) a bank robbery?

b) a divorce case?

c) a burglary committed by a fifteen-year-old?

d) a drowning?

e) a case of driving too fast?

Unit II.

PEOPLE IN LAW CASES IN GREAT BRITAIN.

A. Types of Legal Professions

TASK 1. Read this classification.

SOLICITORS

There are about 50,000 solicitors, a number which is rapidly increasing, and they make up by far the largest branch of the legal profession in England and Wales. They are found in every town, where they deal with all the day-to­day work of preparing legal documents for buying and selling houses, making wills, etc. Solicitors also work on court cases for their clients, prepare cases for barristers to present in the higher courts, and may represent their client in a Magistrates' court.

BARRISTERS

There are about 5,000 barristers who defend or prosecute in the higher. courts. Although solicitors and barristers work together on cases, barristers specialize in representing clients in court and the training and career structures for the two types of lawyer are quite separate. In court, barristers wear wigs and gowns in keeping with the extreme formality of the proceedings. The highest level of barristers have the title QC (Queen's Counsel).

JUDGES

There are a few hundred judges, trained as barristers, who preside in more serious cases. There is no separate training for judges.

JURY

A jury consist of twelve people ("jurors"), who are ordinary people chosen at random from the Electoral Register (the list of people who can vote in elections). -The jury listen to the evidence given in court in certain criminal cases and decide whether the defendant is guilty or innocent. If the person is found guilty, the punishment is passed by the presiding judge. Juries are rarely used in civil cases.

MAGISTRATES

There are about 30,000 magistrates (Justices of the Peace or JPs), who judge cases in the lower courts. They are usually unpaid and have no formal legal qualifications, but they are respectable people who are given some training.

CORONERS

Coroners have medical or legal training (or both), and inquire into violent or unnatural deaths.

CLERKS OF THE COURT

Clerks look after administrative and legal matters in the courtroom.



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