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Chapter

This chapter examines the exceptions to the general rule that all facts in issue, or relevant to the issue, in a given case must be proved by evidence. It shows that sometimes, the judge, or trier of fact, is entitled to find a fact of their own motion: judicial notice may be taken of that fact. Alternatively, a party may formally admit a relevant matter. In addition, a matter may still be determined against a party because the law precludes them from contesting it. They are then ‘estopped’, as when the same matter has been determined against them and in favour of their opponent by a binding and conclusive judgment of a court. Finally, this chapter considers the wider question of the status of judicial findings in other proceedings.

Chapter

This chapter discusses the different functions in a court and how the court is composed of a tribunal of law and a tribunal of fact. In a jury trial, the judge decides matters of law and is the tribunal of law, while the jury is the ‘fact-finder’, the tribunal of fact. In a non-jury trial, the judge or magistrates perform both functions. This chapter discusses the functions of the judge in legal issues concerning evidence and, in particular, when a case is withdrawn from the jury because there is ‘no case’; judicial discretion; and admissibility of evidence illegally or unfairly obtained.

Chapter

This chapter focuses on the different types of professional judges. Part-time judges are solicitors or barristers who are appointed to sit between fifteen and fifty days a year as judges. Full-time judges include Supreme Court Justices, Court of Appeal Judges, High Court Judges, and Circuit Judges. The senior judiciary includes the Lord Chief Justice of England, who represents the views of the judiciary to Parliament and Government, and the Master of the Rolls, who is responsible for supervising all the records of the Court of Chancery, advising the Lord Chancellor, and being the Chancellor's deputy judge. All the judges are appointed by the Queen on the advice of the Lord Chancellor. The Judicial Appointments Commission collects information about judicial candidates and assesses their suitability. The most senior judges in the land are appointed by the Queen on the advice of the Prime Minister.

Chapter

Scott Slorach, Judith Embley, Peter Goodchild, and Catherine Shephard

This chapter first discusses the fundamental distinctions between common law and civil law. It then examines the operation of the doctrine of precedent, and considers the arguments for and against the roles of judges and legislators in making law.

Chapter

This chapter discusses the basic functions of judge and jury. It begins with the general rule of separation of functions of judge and jury, before turning to some of the more direct methods of judicial control. The chapter also considers the extent to which the average jury understands the directions that the law requires the judge to give, and whether jurors are as imperceptive, ignorant, or prejudiced as some of the rules of evidence suppose. Secret monitoring of jury deliberations is one way of resolving these issues, but such monitoring would amount to contempt of court. Moreover, any discussion with a third party before verdict is liable to result in a conviction being quashed. Recourse must, at present, be had to simulations and generally less reliable methods of obtaining the information needed to provide a basis for understanding and improving the law of evidence.

Chapter

This chapter describes and discusses the different types of judge, and their roles, within the English legal system. This includes the Lord Chancellor, Supreme Court Justices, Appeal Court judges, circuit judges, district judges, coroners, and lay magistrates. The qualifications for appointment are outlined and the system of judicial appointments is discussed, including the role of the Judicial Appointments Commission. The chapter includes a day in the life of a district judge to give some context to the every-day work of the judiciary. There is also comment supplied upon the issues of diversity of membership of the judiciary and the importance of independence of the judiciary.

Chapter

This chapter discusses the jury trial. It discusses the influence of the judge on the trial process and outcome; how jury composition affects perceptions of the fairness and legitimacy of jury trial; the impact of jury composition and juror attitudes on verdicts; whether key evidential rules unduly favour the defence or prosecution; and attempts to further erode the practical significance of jury trial.

Chapter

Titles in the Core Text series take the reader straight to the heart of the subject, providing focused, concise, and reliable guides for students at all levels. The law of evidence regulates what evidence may be admitted at trial and under what conditions such admissible proofs are to be admitted. This chapter discusses the following: the respective functions of judge and jury; the concept of relevance; the so-called ‘best evidence principle’; matters of which proof is unnecessary; judicial findings as evidence; prejudicial evidence, unfairly obtained evidence, and suspect witnesses; and evidence excluded as a matter of public policy.

Chapter

7. The Judiciary:  

Our Law Upholders

This chapter talks about the judges who are responsible for upholding the law. One of their most important characteristics is that they are independent, which means that they must have no personal interest in the result, or connection with the parties of any case they try. They must always do their best to give an independent and fair judgement according to law, even though the judgement may be unpopular. When judges are appointed, they must swear an oath to ‘do right to all manner of persons without fear or favour, affection or ill will’. They therefore promise to never be biased and to never allow themselves to take bribes.

Chapter

This introductory chapter begins by considering the definition of a ‘crime’. It then discusses the role of the substantive criminal law; classification of offences; appeals and the role of the trial judge; burden of proof; and reform of the criminal law.

Chapter

This chapter outlines ways in which style can be improved to make the moot presentation more persuasive. It provides answers to the following questions: following questions: How should the moot judge be addressed? Should the identity, character, and standing of the moot judge be considered? How should judges be referred to? What should the style of presentation be like?

Chapter

This chapter deals with the moot judge and judgment. It addresses the following questions: How is the moot judge's assessment divided between the moot and the law? Is it possible to lose on the law and win on the moot? What actions should be taken if the moot judge has misunderstood a point? What actions should be taken if a moot judge's manner is rude? Can the moot judge and my opponents be interrupted or corrected? What actions should be taken if the moot judge's question is misunderstood? How can judicial questions be turned to an advantage? Will a moot judge make a ruling on the arguments before the conclusion of the moot?

Chapter

This chapter first discusses the fundamental distinctions between common law and civil law. It then examines the operation of the doctrine of precedent, and considers the arguments for and against the roles of judges and legislators in making law.

Chapter

David Harris, Michael O’Boyle, Ed Bates, Carla Buckley, and Krešimir Kamber

This chapter discusses the organization and functions of the European Court of Human Rights. Topics covered include the composition of the Court; the election of judges; the roles of the Court Chambers and the Grand Chamber; pilot judgments; reform of the Court; and the future of the Court.

Chapter

This chapter discusses the essential elements of Dworkin’s theory of law. It focuses on Dworkin’s assault on positivism. Dworkin denies the positivist separation between law and morals; rejects the proposition that judges either do or should make law; argues that judges must seek ‘the soundest theory of law’ on which to decide hard cases; and concludes that, since judges (who are unelected officials) do not make law, the judicial role is democratic and prospective. A central aspect of his theory is the importance of individual rights based on the idea that everyone is entitled to equal concern and respect. This leads him to analyse closely the concept of equality and its relation to liberty.

Chapter

This chapter describes and discusses the different types of judge, and their roles, within the English legal system. An outline of the system of judicial appointments is given. There is also comment supplied upon the issues of diversity of membership of the judiciary and the importance of independence of the judiciary.

Chapter

This chapter discusses how cases are processed in the Crown courts and trial by jury. It discusses the role and powers of the judge in relation to the management of cases, trial process and outcomes. It also discusses the jury system and how jury composition affects perceptions of the fairness and legitimacy of jury trial. Research about the impact of jury composition and juror attitudes on verdicts is discussed. The chapter goes on to consider whether key evidential rules unduly favour the defence or prosecution and attempts to further erode the practical significance of jury trial through the use of judge-only trials.

Chapter

This chapter discusses the essential elements of Dworkin’s theory of law. It focuses on Dworkin’s assault on positivism and his insistence upon the close relationship between morals and the law. By denying the positivist separation between law and morals, he expounds a theory that rejects the proposition that judges either do or should make law, and contends instead that judges have an obligation to find and express ‘the soundest theory of law’ on which to decide hard cases; and concludes that, since judges (who are unelected officials) do not make law, the judicial role is democratic and prospective. His approach is based on the notion that only by adopting this view of the judicial function can the law take rights seriously.

Chapter

This chapter discusses statutory interpretation: the language used in a statute, the application of the language to the facts, or both. It covers the so-called rules of interpretation: the literal rule, the golden rule, the purposive rule, and the mischief rule, and why we still refer to them; examples of the ‘rules’ in action; secondary aids to construction; the use of Hansard; how judges choose to explain the construction they have placed on the statute; interpretation and the European Union; interpretation and the Human Rights Act 1998; interpreting secondary legislation; and an example of how to analyse a case on statutory interpretation.

Book

Steve Wilson, Helen Rutherford, Tony Storey, Natalie Wortley, and Birju Kotecha

English Legal System gives an understanding of the operation of the law and the legal system which is essential to the laying of a solid foundation upon which to build further legal studies. After offering practical advice on how to study the English legal system, an overview is given of the nature of law, the sources of law, how the English legal system operates, the courts of England and Wales, and some of the important institutions and personnel of the law. How legislation is made and how it is interpreted are discussed. How judges make law and how this process is governed by the doctrine of judicial precedent are explored. The rule coming from a case, the ratio decidendi, and other statements of law, obiter dicta, are explained. The book considers the impact of membership of the European Union (EU) and being a signatory to the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). The institutions and personnel of the law, such as juries, judges, and lawyers are covered. The criminal process, from arrest to trial to sentencing, is explained and analysed. Resolution of disputes through the civil courts and tribunals is explained, as is the civil process. Alternative methods of dispute resolution, e.g. mediation and arbitration, are also considered.