How do I raise a concern or complain about a Justice of the Peace?
We would like to think that members of the public are at all times completely satisfied with the performance of Justices of Peace in their JP duties.
However we accept that in reality this will not always be the case and that from time to time the public may encounter various issues with varying complexities that they wish to see resolved.
One of our most important responsibilities in this area is ensuring that such matters are treated equitably and in a consistent and timely manner.
If you have a concern regarding a Justice of the Peace that is of a personal nature:
you should discuss this with the JP concerned and if not resolved then you should firstly contact the local Association Registrar who will advise you
Complaints that are ‘low level’ are dealt with in the first instance by the local Justice of the Peace Association. However Royal Federation and the Ministry of Justice are always informed.
A ‘low level’ complaint is one that is not serious enough to justify removal or suspension of a Ministerial JP. Most minor complaints are resolved at this level, if not they are referred to the Ministry of Justice
More serious complaints such as charging for services or incompetence are referred directly to the Ministry of Justice.
Any allegation of serious misconduct of a Judicial Justice of the Peace is referred to the office of the Chief District Court Judge.
Justices of the Peace are bound by their Codes of Ethics and Conduct. Royal Federation has policy in place (section D) for the processing of complaints.
Sections 5 and 5D of the Justices of the Peace Act 1957 provide for disciplinary procedure or removal from office should it be considered justified.
The Ministry of Justice Best Practice Manual page 36 has flowcharts on the complaints procedure and an explanation of the process.