BTEC A Level Law P1 - explain the use of the courts in the civil and criminal court hierarchies

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In this assignment I will explain the use of the courts in the civil and criminal court hierarchies. I will be explaining the structure and the ranks of the courts.

Civil and Criminal Law:

Civil courts deal with disagreements with different individuals. They can be individual’s bodies or organisations. For example disputes with neighbours and personal injury claim etc. Criminal courts deal with arguments involving the state. It also is known as crimes against the state for example crimes like GBH and murder.

Youth Court:


A youth court is a type of magistrate’s court for students, for e.g. 10 – 18 A youth court has 3 magistrates and a district judge. There isn’t a jury in a youth court. A parent and guardian must be with you at all times if you go to a youth court. Youth courts are different from adult courts through many ways. For example they are less formal and members of the public are not allowed in the court unless permission, another factor is that you are called by your first name. A youth court deals with stuff like theft and burglary, anti social behaviour and drugs offences. If it is a serious crime then the case will start off in Youth Court and then progress to Crown Court. A Youth Court can give a range of sentences for e.g. community sentences and detention and training orders carried out in secure centres for young people. If you want to appeal then Court Staff can give you information on how to do so.

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Magistrate’s court (Criminal):

The magistrate’s court deals with 97% of cases. It covers offences such as road traffic and assault. The maximum sentences this court can give are 6 months and or fine someone £5k. Triable either way (guilty or not guilty) offences may be also heard here or only first instance court cases are heard here. Magistrate’s court is bound by all higher court decisions. Offences such as, speeding fines, trespassing, vandalism etc.

Crown Court (Criminal):

The crown court deals with offences such as murder and rape etc. It has no limitation to ...

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