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The English Legal System

The English Legal System (8th edn)

Alisdair Gillespie and Siobhan Weare
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date: 22 June 2024

p. 2257. The Structure of the Tribunalslocked

p. 2257. The Structure of the Tribunalslocked

  • Alisdair A. GillespieAlisdair A. GillespieProfessor of Criminal Law and Justice at Lancaster University
  •  and Siobhan WeareSiobhan WeareSenior Lecturer in Law at Lancaster University


This chapter examines the jurisdiction and structure of tribunals. It then considers two very different tribunals through the use of case studies, namely the Employment Tribunals and the Investigatory Powers Tribunal. Tribunals have existed for many years but have traditionally operated as an oversight system for administrative issues. In recent years, the number of tribunals has increased and their work has begun to involve more complicated legal questions. Tribunals are now, in essence, a parallel system of dispute resolution and their complexity is recognized by the fact that their presiding officers now bear the title of ‘judge’. This chapter examines this parallel judicial system and identifies similarities between and differences from court justice.

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