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s9(1) Authorisation to act as a High Court Judge

Closing date:  18 December, 2018 - 13:00


A selection exercise is due to launch on 27 November to identify 35 candidates to recommend for authorisation to act as judges of the High Court in accordance with s9(1) of the Senior Courts Act 1981.

It is anticipated that opportunities will occur across all divisions of the High Court (Family, Chancery and the Queen’s Bench) though not all on every circuit. At present, no requirements in any division are expected on the Northern circuit.

Successful candidates will be authorised for a fixed term of 4-years and could be deployed to sit across any of the 3 divisions, subject to the approval of the senior judiciary.

Candidates applying for authorisation must be able to demonstrate the same level of competence as required of a salaried High Court judge and, if successful, to undertake work that would otherwise be reserved for judges of the High Court.

Who can apply

To be eligible for authorisation, candidates must hold one of the following judicial offices:

  • Chamber President or Deputy Chamber President of any chamber in the Upper or First-tier Tribunal
  • Judge or Deputy Judge of the Upper Tribunal
  • President of Employment Tribunals (England and Wales) or President of Employment Tribunals (Scotland)
  • Circuit Judge
  • Recorder 

Candidates must also be able to offer a reasonable length of service, usually of 4 years, before the statutory retirement age of 70.

About the process

This year’s process will involve assessment against a concise list of the required skills and abilities.

The application window, due to open at 13:00 on 27 November, will be 3 weeks and will require candidates to provide a statement of suitability demonstrating the skills and abilities.

The JAC will also request a statement of suitability from each candidate’s nominated leadership judge.

Shortlisting will be by paper sift, based on the evidence provided in the statements of suitability, as provided by both the candidate and their leadership judge. Those who are shortlisted will be invited to attend an interview which will involve questions relating to the skills and abilities.

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