Judge
Overview
 
A judge is a person who presides over court
Court
A court is a form of tribunal, often a governmental institution, with the authority to adjudicate legal disputes between parties and carry out the administration of justice in civil, criminal, and administrative matters in accordance with the rule of law...

 proceedings, either alone or as part of a panel of judges. The powers, functions, method of appointment, discipline, and training of judges vary widely across different jurisdiction
Jurisdiction
Jurisdiction is the practical authority granted to a formally constituted legal body or to a political leader to deal with and make pronouncements on legal matters and, by implication, to administer justice within a defined area of responsibility...

s. The judge is supposed to conduct the trial impartially and in an open court. The judge hears all the witnesses and any other evidence presented by the parties of the case, assesses the credibility and arguments of the parties, and then issues a ruling on the matter at hand based on his or her interpretation of the law and his or her own personal judgment.
Encyclopedia
A judge is a person who presides over court
Court
A court is a form of tribunal, often a governmental institution, with the authority to adjudicate legal disputes between parties and carry out the administration of justice in civil, criminal, and administrative matters in accordance with the rule of law...

 proceedings, either alone or as part of a panel of judges. The powers, functions, method of appointment, discipline, and training of judges vary widely across different jurisdiction
Jurisdiction
Jurisdiction is the practical authority granted to a formally constituted legal body or to a political leader to deal with and make pronouncements on legal matters and, by implication, to administer justice within a defined area of responsibility...

s. The judge is supposed to conduct the trial impartially and in an open court. The judge hears all the witnesses and any other evidence presented by the parties of the case, assesses the credibility and arguments of the parties, and then issues a ruling on the matter at hand based on his or her interpretation of the law and his or her own personal judgment. In some jurisdictions, the judge's powers may be shared with a jury
Jury
A jury is a sworn body of people convened to render an impartial verdict officially submitted to them by a court, or to set a penalty or judgment. Modern juries tend to be found in courts to ascertain the guilt, or lack thereof, in a crime. In Anglophone jurisdictions, the verdict may be guilty,...

. In inquisitorial system
Inquisitorial system
An inquisitorial system is a legal system where the court or a part of the court is actively involved in investigating the facts of the case, as opposed to an adversarial system where the role of the court is primarily that of an impartial referee between the prosecution and the defense...

s of criminal investigation, a judge might also be an examining magistrate
Examining magistrate
In an inquisitorial system of law the examining magistrate or investigating magistrate is a judge who carries out investigations into cases and arranges prosecutions....

.

Symbols of office

A variety of traditions have become associated with the rank or occupation.

In many parts of the world, judges wear long robe
Robe
A robe is a loose-fitting outer garment. A robe is distinguished from a cape or cloak by the fact that it usually has sleeves. The English word robe derives from Middle English robe , borrowed from Old French robe , itself taken from the Frankish word *rouba , and is related to the word rob...

s (usually in black
Black
Black is the color of objects that do not emit or reflect light in any part of the visible spectrum; they absorb all such frequencies of light...

 or red
Red
Red is any of a number of similar colors evoked by light consisting predominantly of the longest wavelengths of light discernible by the human eye, in the wavelength range of roughly 630–740 nm. Longer wavelengths than this are called infrared , and cannot be seen by the naked eye...

) and sit on an elevated platform during trials (known as the bench).

In some countries, especially in the Commonwealth of Nations
Commonwealth of Nations
The Commonwealth of Nations, normally referred to as the Commonwealth and formerly known as the British Commonwealth, is an intergovernmental organisation of fifty-four independent member states...

, judges sometimes wear wigs. The long wig often associated with judges is now reserved for ceremonial occasions, although it was part of the standard attire in previous centuries. A short wig resembling but not identical to a barrister
Barrister
A barrister is a member of one of the two classes of lawyer found in many common law jurisdictions with split legal professions. Barristers specialise in courtroom advocacy, drafting legal pleadings and giving expert legal opinions...

's wig would be worn in court. This tradition, however, is being phased out in Britain in non-criminal courts.

American judges frequently wear black robes. American judges have ceremonial gavel
Gavel
A gavel is a small ceremonial mallet commonly made of hardwood, typically fashioned with a handle and often struck against a sound block to enhance its sounding qualities. It is a symbol of the authority and right to act officially in the capacity of a chair or presiding officer. It is used to call...

s, although American judges have court deputies or bailiffs and "contempt of court
Contempt of court
Contempt of court is a court order which, in the context of a court trial or hearing, declares a person or organization to have disobeyed or been disrespectful of the court's authority...

" power as their main devices to maintain decorum in the courtroom. However, in some Western states
Western United States
.The Western United States, commonly referred to as the American West or simply "the West," traditionally refers to the region comprising the westernmost states of the United States. Because the U.S. expanded westward after its founding, the meaning of the West has evolved over time...

, like California
California
California is a state located on the West Coast of the United States. It is by far the most populous U.S. state, and the third-largest by land area...

, judges did not always wear robes and instead wore everyday clothing. Today, some members of state supreme court
State supreme court
In the United States, the state supreme court is the highest state court in the state court system ....

s, such as the Maryland Court of Appeals
Maryland Court of Appeals
The Court of Appeals of Maryland is the supreme court of the U.S. state of Maryland. The court, which is composed of one chief judge and six associate judges, meets in the Robert C. Murphy Courts of Appeal Building in the state capital, Annapolis...

 wear distinct dress.

In Italy
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

 both judges and lawyers wear particular black robes.

In the People's Republic of China
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

, judges wore regular street clothes until 1984, when they began to wear military-style uniforms
Military uniform
Military uniforms comprises standardised dress worn by members of the armed forces and paramilitaries of various nations. Military dress and military styles have gone through great changes over the centuries from colourful and elaborate to extremely utilitarian...

, which were intended to demonstrate authority. These uniforms were replaced in 2000 by black robes similar to those worn in the rest of the world.

In Oman
Oman
Oman , officially called the Sultanate of Oman , is an Arab state in southwest Asia on the southeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula. It is bordered by the United Arab Emirates to the northwest, Saudi Arabia to the west, and Yemen to the southwest. The coast is formed by the Arabian Sea on the...

, the judge wears a long stripe (red, green white), while the attorneys wear the black gown.

Hong Kong

In Hong Kong
Hong Kong
Hong Kong is one of two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China , the other being Macau. A city-state situated on China's south coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and South China Sea, it is renowned for its expansive skyline and deep natural harbour...

, judges were addressed, in Cantonese, as Fat Goon Dai Yan (法官大人) before 1997, and Fat Goon Gok Ha (法官閣下) since 1997. Fat Goon(法官) means "Judge". 'Your Lordship' or 'Your Ladyship' is used when trials are conducted in English, another official language of the city-state.

India

In India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

, judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts are addressed as 'Your Lordship'/'My Lord' and 'Your Ladyship'/'My Lady', a tradition directly attributable to England. However a resolution of the Bar Council of India
Bar Council of India
The Bar Council of India is a statutory body that regulates and represents the Indian bar. It was created by Parliament under the Advocates Act, 1961. It prescribes standards of professional conduct and etiquette and exercises disciplinary jurisdiction...

 calls upon lawyers not to address the judges as 'lord' or 'lady', questioning the association with nobility within a constitutional democracy. Lawyers however continue to so address judges – partly out of entrenched habit and partly out of fear of falling in disfavour with them. Subordinate court judges (district, magistrate, munsif and sub-judges) are addressed as 'Your Honour'.

Israel

In Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

, judges of all courts are addressed as "Sir/Madam" (אדוני/גבירתי) or "Your Honor" (כבודו/כבודה).

Japan

In Japan
Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...

, judges are addressed simply as "Saibancho" (Chief judge) or "Saibankan" (Judge)

Malaysia

In Malaysia, judges of the subordinate courts are addressed as "Tuan" or "Puan" (Sir or Madam), or Your Honour, while judges of the superior courts are addressed as "Yang Arif" (lit. "Learned One") or My Lord/Lady and Your Lordship/Ladyship if the proceedings, as they generally are in the superior courts, are in English.

Pakistan

In Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

, judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts are addressed as 'Your Lordship'/'My Lord' and 'Your Ladyship'/'My Lady', a tradition directly attributable to England. There is some resistance to this on religious grounds but more or less continues till this day. In lower courts, judges are addressed as "sir", "madam" or the Urdu equivalent "Janab".

Sri Lanka

In Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka, officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka is a country off the southern coast of the Indian subcontinent. Known until 1972 as Ceylon , Sri Lanka is an island surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait, and lies in the vicinity of India and the...

, judges of all courts are addressed as "Your Honour", however the Chief Justice
Chief Justice of Sri Lanka
The Chief Justice of Sri Lanka is the highest post in the judicial system of Sri Lanka and heads the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka. The Chief Justice is appointed by the President, chosen from candidates recommended by the Constitutional Council...

 is addressed as "Your Lordship". Judges of the Supreme Court
Supreme Court of Sri Lanka
The Supreme Court of Sri Lanka is the highest court of the nation of Sri Lanka. The Supreme Court is the highest and final judicial instance of record and is empowered to exercise its powers, subject to the provisions of the Constitution. The Court has ultimate appellate jurisdiction in...

 and the Appeal Court receives the title "The Honourable".

Bulgaria

In Bulgaria
Bulgaria
Bulgaria , officially the Republic of Bulgaria , is a parliamentary democracy within a unitary constitutional republic in Southeast Europe. The country borders Romania to the north, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, as well as the Black Sea to the east...

 before 1989 during the communist regime judges were addressed as "другарю" ("comrade"). After 1989 - "господин/ госпожо съдия" ("Mr./Mrs. Judge").

France

In France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, the presiding judge of a court is addressed as "Mr./Mrs. President
President
A president is a leader of an organization, company, trade union, university, or country.Etymologically, a president is one who presides, who sits in leadership...

" (Monsieur le président/Madame la présidente), whilst associate judges are addressed as "Mr./Mrs. Judge" (Monsieur le juge/Madame le juge).

Germany

In Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 as "Mr./Mrs. Chairman" (Herr Vorsitzender/Frau Vorsitzende).

Ireland

Judges of the Supreme Court
Supreme Court (Ireland)
The Supreme Court of Ireland is the highest judicial authority in the Republic of Ireland. It is a court of final appeal and exercises, in conjunction with the High Court, judicial review over Acts of the Oireachtas . The Court also has jurisdiction to ensure compliance with the Constitution of...

 or High Court are officially titled "The Honourable Mr/Mrs/Ms/Miss Justice N", referred to for short as "Mr/Mrs/Ms/Miss Justice N" and addressed in Court by their respective titles or styles, as "The Court", or simply "Judge". Some barristers continue occasionally to use the traditional mode of style, "My Lord", but this has been discouraged since 2006. In law reports, the Chief Justice of Ireland
Chief Justice of Ireland
The Chief Justice of Ireland is the president of the Supreme Court of Ireland.Under Constitution of Ireland, the Chief Justice of Ireland also occupies several positions ex officio, these include;* A possible judge of the High Court....

 has the postnominal "CJ", the President of the High Court the postnominal "P", and all other judges "J", e.g. "Smith J".

Judges of the Circuit Court
Circuit Court (Ireland)
The Circuit Court is an intermediate level court of local and limited jurisdiction in the Republic of Ireland which hears both civil and criminal matters. On the criminal side the Circuit Court hears criminal matters tried on indictment with a judge and jury, except for certain serious crimes...

 are titled "His/Her Honour Judge N" and are addressed in Court as "Judge". Before 2006, they were addressed as "My Lord". In law reports, "Judge Smith".

Judges of the District Court
District Court (Ireland)
The District Court is the main court of summary jurisdiction in Ireland. It has responsibility for hearing minor criminal matters, small civil claims, liquor licensing, and certain family law applications...

 are titled "Judge N" and addressed in Court as "Judge". Before 1991 these judges were known as District Justices and addressed as "Your Worship".

Italy

In Italy
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

 the presiding judge of a court is addressed as well to as "Mr./Mrs. President
President
A president is a leader of an organization, company, trade union, university, or country.Etymologically, a president is one who presides, who sits in leadership...

" ("Signor presidente della corte").

Netherlands

In the Netherlands
Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

, presiding judges of either sex during trial are addressed edelachtbare ("Your Honor").

Poland

In Poland
Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

, presiding judges of either sex during trial are addressed Wysoki Sądzie ("High Judge").

Russia

In Russia as "Your Honor" ("Ваша Честь" trans. "Vasha Chest") - for criminal cases only. For civil and commercial cases the right version is "Respected Court".

Spain

In Spain, magistrates of the Supreme Court, magistrates and judges are addressed to as "Your Lordship" (Su Señoría); however, in formal occasions, magistrates of the Supreme Court are addressed to as "Your Right Honorable Lordship" (Vuestra Señoría Excelentísima or Excelentísimo Señor/Excelentísima Señora); in those solemn occasions, magistrates of lower Courts are addressed as "Your Honorable Lordship" (Vuestra Señoría Ilustrísima or Ilustrísimo Señor/Ilustrísima Señora); simple judges are always called "Your Lordship".

Sweden

In Sweden
Sweden
Sweden , officially the Kingdom of Sweden , is a Nordic country on the Scandinavian Peninsula in Northern Europe. Sweden borders with Norway and Finland and is connected to Denmark by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund....

 the presiding judge of a court is normally addressed as (sometimes Mr./Mrs.) Chairman (Herr "Ordförande"/Fru "Ordförande").
England and Wales
England and Wales
England and Wales is a jurisdiction within the United Kingdom. It consists of England and Wales, two of the four countries of the United Kingdom...


In the Courts of England and Wales
Courts of England and Wales
Her Majesty's Courts of Justice of England and Wales are the civil and criminal courts responsible for the administration of justice in England and Wales; they apply the law of England and Wales and are established under Acts of the Parliament of the United Kingdom.The United Kingdom does not have...

 judges of the High Court
High Court
The term High Court usually refers to the superior court of a country or state. In some countries, it is the highest court . In others, it is positioned lower in the hierarchy of courts The term High Court usually refers to the superior court (or supreme court) of a country or state. In some...

 and Court of Appeal are addressed
Forms of Address in the United Kingdom
Forms of address used in the United Kingdom are given below.Several terms have been abbreviated in the table below. The forms used in the table are given first, followed by alternative acceptable abbreviations in parentheses.-Abbreviations:*His/Her Majesty: HM...

 (when sitting in those courts) as "My Lord" or "My Lady" and referred to as "Your Lordship" or "Your Ladyship".

When a judge of the High Court
High Court judge
A High Court judge is a judge of the High Court of Justice, and represents the third highest level of judge in the courts of England and Wales. High Court judges are referred to as puisne judges...

 who is not present is being referred to they are described as "Mr./Mrs. Justice N." In writing, the post-nominal letter "J" is used to denote a Judge (male or female) of the High Court: for example, Smith J.

Judges of the Court of Appeal, also called Lords Justice of Appeal, are referred to as "Lord Justice N" or "Lady Justice N." In writing, Lords Justices of Appeal are afforded the post nominal letters "LJ:" for example, Smith LJ.

Circuit Judges and Recorders
Recorder (judge)
A Recorder is a judicial officer in England and Wales. It now refers to two quite different appointments. The ancient Recorderships of England and Wales now form part of a system of Honorary Recorderships which are filled by the most senior full-time circuit judges...

 are addressed as "Your Honour." Circuit judges are referred to as "His/Her Honour Judge N." In writing, this title may be abbreviated as "HHJ" or "HH Judge," e.g. "HH Judge Smith." district judges and tribunal
Tribunal
A tribunal in the general sense is any person or institution with the authority to judge, adjudicate on, or determine claims or disputes—whether or not it is called a tribunal in its title....

 judges are addressed as "Sir/Madam".

Lay magistrates are sometimes still addressed as "Your Worship" in England, South Africa and Canada, mainly by solicitors, but this practice in other Commonwealth countries is nearly obsolete. Lay magistrates are also addressed as "Sir/Madam."

Masters
Master (judiciary)
A Master is judicial officer found in the courts of England and in numerous other jurisdictions based on the common law tradition. A master's jurisdiction is generally confined to civil proceedings and is a subset of that of a judge. Masters are typically involved in hearing motions, case...

 of the High Court are addressed as "Master".

In the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom
Supreme Court of the United Kingdom
The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom is the supreme court in all matters under English law, Northern Ireland law and Scottish civil law. It is the court of last resort and highest appellate court in the United Kingdom; however the High Court of Justiciary remains the supreme court for criminal...

, judges are called Justices of the Supreme Court. Those Justices of the Supreme Court who do not hold life peerages are now given the courtesy style "Lord" or "Lady." Justices of the Supreme Court are addressed as "My Lord/Lady" in court. In the law reports, the Justices of the Supreme Court are usually referred to as "Lord/Lady N", although the Weekly Law Reports appends the post-nominal letters "JSC" (e.g. "Lady Smith JSC"), and the President and Deputy President of the Court are afforded the post-nominal letters PSC and DPSC respectively.
Scotland

In the Courts of Scotland
Courts of Scotland
The civil, criminal and heraldic Courts of Scotland are responsible for the administration of justice. They are constituted and governed by Scots law....

 judges in the Court of Session
Court of Session
The Court of Session is the supreme civil court of Scotland, and constitutes part of the College of Justice. It sits in Parliament House in Edinburgh and is both a court of first instance and a court of appeal....

, High Court of Justiciary
High Court of Justiciary
The High Court of Justiciary is the supreme criminal court of Scotland.The High Court is both a court of first instance and a court of appeal. As a court of first instance, the High Court sits mainly in Parliament House, or in the former Sheriff Court building, in Edinburgh, but also sits from time...

 and Sheriff Court
Sheriff Court
Sheriff courts provide the local court service in Scotland, with each court serving a sheriff court district within a sheriffdom.Sheriff courts deal with a myriad of legal procedures which include:*Solemn and Summary Criminal cases...

s are all addressed as "My Lord" or "My Lady" and referred to as "Your Lordship" or "Your Ladyship".

Justices of the Peace
Justice of the Peace
A justice of the peace is a puisne judicial officer elected or appointed by means of a commission to keep the peace. Depending on the jurisdiction, they might dispense summary justice or merely deal with local administrative applications in common law jurisdictions...

 in Justice of the Peace Court
Justice of the Peace Court
A Justice of the Peace Court is the least authoritative type of criminal court in Scotland. The court operates under summary procedure and deals primarily with less serious criminal offences.-History:...

s are addressed and referred to as "Your Honour".

Canada

In general, Canadian judges are addressed directly as "Your Honour" or "Justice" and are formally referred to in the third person as "The Honourable Mr. (or Madam) Justice 'Forename Surname'". Less formally, judges of a Superior Court are referred to as "Justice 'Surname'", and it is never appropriate to refer to such a judge as "Judge 'Surname.'" When referred to in a decision of a court, judges' titles are often abbreviated to the suffix "J.", so that Justice Smith will be referred to as Smith J. Judges in some superior courts are addressed as "My Lord" or "My Lady".

Generally, it is only appropriate to use the term "judge" when speaking of an anonymous or general position, such as "the trial judge," or when referring to a member of an inferior or provincial court such as the Ontario Court of Justice.

Like other members of the Commonwealth, a justice of the peace is addressed as "Your Worship," and a Master of a Superior Court is both addressed and referred to as "Master."

United States

In many states throughout the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

, a judge is addressed as "Your Honor" or "Judge" when presiding over the court. "Judge" may be more commonly used by attorneys and staff, while either may be common with the plaintiff or defendant. Notably, the Superior Court of Los Angeles County
Superior Court of Los Angeles County
The Superior Court of Los Angeles County is the Superior Court located in Los Angeles County. It is the largest single unified trial court in the United States....

, the largest unified trial court in the United States, has a rule that the judge shall be addressed only as "Your Honor", and never as "Judge", "Judge (name)", "ma'am", or "sir".

The judges of the Supreme Court of the United States
Supreme Court of the United States
The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the United States. It has ultimate appellate jurisdiction over all state and federal courts, and original jurisdiction over a small range of cases...

, and the judges of the supreme courts
State supreme court
In the United States, the state supreme court is the highest state court in the state court system ....

 of several U.S. state
U.S. state
A U.S. state is any one of the 50 federated states of the United States of America that share sovereignty with the federal government. Because of this shared sovereignty, an American is a citizen both of the federal entity and of his or her state of domicile. Four states use the official title of...

s and other countries are called "justices" or "judges of the peace".

The justices of the supreme courts usually hold higher offices than the justice of the peace
Justice of the Peace
A justice of the peace is a puisne judicial officer elected or appointed by means of a commission to keep the peace. Depending on the jurisdiction, they might dispense summary justice or merely deal with local administrative applications in common law jurisdictions...

, a judge who holds police court
Police Court
Police Court is a 1932 American Monogram Pictures drama motion picture starring Henry B. Walthall, Leon Janney, Lionel Belmore, and King Baggot. Directed by Louis King and produced by I. E. Chadwick, the screenplay was adapted by Stuart Anthony from his story...

 in some jurisdiction
Jurisdiction
Jurisdiction is the practical authority granted to a formally constituted legal body or to a political leader to deal with and make pronouncements on legal matters and, by implication, to administer justice within a defined area of responsibility...

s and who typically tries small claims
Small claims court
Small-claims courts have limited jurisdiction to hear civil cases between private litigants. Courts authorized to try small claims may also have other judicial functions, and the name by which such a court is known varies by jurisdiction; it may be known as a county or magistrate's court...

 and misdemeanor
Misdemeanor
A misdemeanor is a "lesser" criminal act in many common law legal systems. Misdemeanors are generally punished much less severely than felonies, but theoretically more so than administrative infractions and regulatory offences...

s. However, the state of New York
New York
New York is a state in the Northeastern region of the United States. It is the nation's third most populous state. New York is bordered by New Jersey and Pennsylvania to the south, and by Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont to the east...

 inverts the usual order, with the Supreme Court of the State of New York being the lowest trial court of general jurisdiction
General jurisdiction
A court of general jurisdiction is one that has the authority to hear cases of all kinds - criminal, civil, family, probate, and so forth.-Courts of general jurisdiction in the United States:All federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction. Many U.S...

, and the Court of Appeals being the highest court. This is a historical artifact from when the superior trial court in common law jurisdictions was called the "supreme court" (which still exists in some jurisdictions, such as Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

).

Consequently, New York trial judges are called "justices", while the judges on the Court of Appeals are "judges". New York judges who deal with guardianships, trusts and estates are uniquely known as "surrogate
Surrogate Court
A probate court is a specialized court that deals with matters of probate and the administration of estates....

s".

A senior judge
Senior status
Senior status is a form of semi-retirement for United States federal judges, and judges in some state court systems. After federal judges have reached a certain combination of age and years of service on the federal courts, they are allowed to assume senior status...

, in U.S. practice, is a retired judge who handles selected cases for a governmental entity while in retirement, on a part-time basis.

Subordinate or inferior jurisdiction judges in U.S. legal practice are sometimes called magistrate
Magistrate
A magistrate is an officer of the state; in modern usage the term usually refers to a judge or prosecutor. This was not always the case; in ancient Rome, a magistratus was one of the highest government officers and possessed both judicial and executive powers. Today, in common law systems, a...

s, although in the federal court of the United States, they are called magistrate judges
United States magistrate judge
In the United States federal courts, magistrate judges are appointed to assist United States district court judges in the performance of their duties...

. Subordinate judges in U.S. legal practice who are appointed on a case-by-case basis, particularly in cases where a great deal of detailed and tedious evidence must be reviewed, are often called "masters" or "special masters" and have authority in a particular case often determined on a case by case basis.

Judges of courts of specialized jurisdiction (such as bankruptcy
Bankruptcy
Bankruptcy is a legal status of an insolvent person or an organisation, that is, one that cannot repay the debts owed to creditors. In most jurisdictions bankruptcy is imposed by a court order, often initiated by the debtor....

 courts or juvenile
Adolescence
Adolescence is a transitional stage of physical and mental human development generally occurring between puberty and legal adulthood , but largely characterized as beginning and ending with the teenage stage...

 courts) were sometimes known officially as "referee
Referee
A referee is the person of authority, in a variety of sports, who is responsible for presiding over the game from a neutral point of view and making on the fly decisions that enforce the rules of the sport...

s," but the use of this title is in decline. Judges sitting in courts of equity in common law
Common law
Common law is law developed by judges through decisions of courts and similar tribunals rather than through legislative statutes or executive branch action...

 systems (such as judges in the equity courts of Delaware
Delaware
Delaware is a U.S. state located on the Atlantic Coast in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States. It is bordered to the south and west by Maryland, and to the north by Pennsylvania...

) are called "Chancellor
Chancellor
Chancellor is the title of various official positions in the governments of many nations. The original chancellors were the Cancellarii of Roman courts of justice—ushers who sat at the cancelli or lattice work screens of a basilica or law court, which separated the judge and counsel from the...

s".

Individuals with judicial responsibilities who report to an executive branch official, rather than being a part of the judiciary, are often called "administrative law judge
Administrative law judge
An administrative law judge in the United States is an official who presides at an administrative trial-type hearing to resolve a dispute between a government agency and someone affected by a decision of that agency. The ALJ is usually the initial trier of fact and decision maker...

s" in U.S. practice. They were previously known as hearing examiners. They commonly make initial determinations regarding matters such as workers' compensation
Workers' compensation
Workers' compensation is a form of insurance providing wage replacement and medical benefits to employees injured in the course of employment in exchange for mandatory relinquishment of the employee's right to sue his or her employer for the tort of negligence...

, eligibility for government benefits, regulatory matters, and immigration determinations.

Judges who derive their authority from a contractual agreement of the parties to a dispute, rather than a governmental body are called arbitrators. They typically do not receive the honorific forms of address nor do they bear the symbolic trappings of a publicly appointed judge. However, it is now common for many retired judges to serve as arbitrators, and they will often write their names as if they were still judges, with the parenthetical "(Ret.)" for "Retired."

Unlike many civil law countries which have some courts on which panels of judges with nearly equal status composed of both legally trained professional judges and lay judges who lack legal training and are not career judges, the United States legal system (like most Anglo-American legal systems) makes a clear distinction between professional judges and laymen involved in deciding case who are jurors who are part of a jury
Jury
A jury is a sworn body of people convened to render an impartial verdict officially submitted to them by a court, or to set a penalty or judgment. Modern juries tend to be found in courts to ascertain the guilt, or lack thereof, in a crime. In Anglophone jurisdictions, the verdict may be guilty,...

. Most, but not all U.S. judges have professional credentials as lawyers. Non-lawyer judges in the United States are often elected, and a typically either justices of the peace or part-time judges in rural limited jurisdiction courts. A non-lawyer judge typically has the same rights and responsibilities as a lawyer who is a judge holding the same office, and is addressed in the same manner.

Australia

In Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

 since 2007 magistrates and judges of all jurisdictions including the High Court of Australia
High Court of Australia
The High Court of Australia is the supreme court in the Australian court hierarchy and the final court of appeal in Australia. It has both original and appellate jurisdiction, has the power of judicial review over laws passed by the Parliament of Australia and the parliaments of the States, and...

 are now referred to as "Your Honour" or "His Honour Mr Justice Forename Surname". Judges of the Supreme Court are called "Justice". Like other common law jurisdictions, when referred to in court judgments as Surname J. Judges in the New South Wales Court of Appeal are referred to as Justices of the Appeal (abbreviated Surname JA).

New Zealand

In New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

, judges of the High Court and above are referred to as "His/Her Honour Justice Surname" in speech, and "Surname J" in writing. Judges of the District Court and the other statutory courts are referred to as "His/Her Honour Judge Surname" in speech, and "Surname DCJ" or "Judge Surname" in writing. The "Mr" of the title "Mr Justice" was dropped on the appointment of Cartwright J
Silvia Cartwright
Dame Silvia Rose Cartwright, PCNZM, DBE, QSO, DStJ was the 18th Governor-General of New Zealand.She is a graduate of the University of Otago, where she gained her LL.B degree in 1967, and a former student at Otago Girls' High School.- Public life and family :In 1989, she became the first female...

 to the High Court. In Court, all judges are addressed as "Your Honour", or "Sir/Madam".

Brazil

In Brazil
Brazil
Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

, judges are simply called "juiz" or "juíza" (male and female forms of "judge") and traditionally addressed to as "Vossa Excelência" (lit. "Your Excellency", translated as "Your Honor") or "Meritíssimo" (lit. "Honorable", but it is used as a pronoun also translated as "Your Honor"). Judges that are part of a pannel in a State Court, or Federal Court are called "desembargadores". Judges sitting in the higher courts (Supremo Tribunal Federal, Superior Tribunal de Justiça, Tribunal Superior do Trabalho and Tribunal Superior Eleitoral) are called "ministro" or "ministra" (male and female forms of "minister") and also referred to as "Vossa Excelência".

Ivalice

In Ivalice
Ivalice
is a fictional location in the Final Fantasy XII, Final Fantasy Tactics, and Vagrant Story universe. The world was conceived by Yasumi Matsuno when he joined Square Co. in 1995, and has since been expanded upon by several games, with more yet due with the Ivalice Alliance series...

, judges are addressed as "Your Excellency" in formal settings, but as a gender non-specific "Sir" while performing their duties as elite guard and field magistrates for their respective nations.

Biblical Judges

The Biblical Book of Judges
Book of Judges
The Book of Judges is the seventh book of the Hebrew bible and the Christian Old Testament. Its title describes its contents: it contains the history of Biblical judges, divinely inspired prophets whose direct knowledge of Yahweh allows them to act as decision-makers for the Israelites, as...

 revolves around a succession of leaders who were known as "Judges"
Biblical judges
A biblical judge is "a ruler or a military leader, as well as someone who presided over legal hearings."...

 (Hebrew shoftim שופטים) but who - aside from their judicial function - were also tribal war leaders, leading in war against threatening enemies. The same word is, however, used in contemporary Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 to denote judges whose function and authority is similar to that in other modern countries.

See also

  • Adjudicator
    Adjudicator
    An adjudicator is someone who presides, judges and arbitrates during a formal dispute. The term adjudicator essentially means a judge, without invoking the legal term. An ombudsman is a type of adjudicator in local government in the United Kingdom....

  • Barrister
    Barrister
    A barrister is a member of one of the two classes of lawyer found in many common law jurisdictions with split legal professions. Barristers specialise in courtroom advocacy, drafting legal pleadings and giving expert legal opinions...

  • Court dress
    Court dress
    Court dress comprises the style of clothes prescribed for courts of law, and formerly for royal courts.- Where court dress is worn :Court dress is worn at hearings in open court in all Senior Courts of England and Wales and in county courts. However, court dress may be dispensed with at the option...

  • Election judge
    Election judge
    In the United States an election judge is an official responsible for the proper and orderly voting in local precincts. Depending on the state, election judges may be identified as members of a political party or non-partisan...

  • Judicial deference
    Judicial deference
    Judicial deference is a doctrine by which judges seek to avoid frustrating the will of the legislature when deciding cases . It is most commonly found in countries, such as the United Kingdom, which lack an entrenched constitution, as the essential purpose of such documents is to limit the power of...

  • Judiciary
    Judiciary
    The judiciary is the system of courts that interprets and applies the law in the name of the state. The judiciary also provides a mechanism for the resolution of disputes...

  • Lawyer
    Lawyer
    A lawyer, according to Black's Law Dictionary, is "a person learned in the law; as an attorney, counsel or solicitor; a person who is practicing law." Law is the system of rules of conduct established by the sovereign government of a society to correct wrongs, maintain the stability of political...

  • Lay judge
    Lay judge
    A lay judge is a person assisting a judge in a trial. Lay judges are used in some civil law jurisdictions, such as Germany, Sweden and Finland. Japan began implementing a new lay judge system in 2009....

  • List of jurists
  • Magistrate
    Magistrate
    A magistrate is an officer of the state; in modern usage the term usually refers to a judge or prosecutor. This was not always the case; in ancient Rome, a magistratus was one of the highest government officers and possessed both judicial and executive powers. Today, in common law systems, a...

  • Prosecutor
    Prosecutor
    The prosecutor is the chief legal representative of the prosecution in countries with either the common law adversarial system, or the civil law inquisitorial system...

  • Public defender
    Public defender
    The term public defender is primarily used to refer to a criminal defense lawyer appointed to represent people charged with a crime but who cannot afford to hire an attorney in the United States and Brazil. The term is also applied to some ombudsman offices, for example in Jamaica, and is one way...

  • Solicitor
    Solicitor
    Solicitors are lawyers who traditionally deal with any legal matter including conducting proceedings in courts. In the United Kingdom, a few Australian states and the Republic of Ireland, the legal profession is split between solicitors and barristers , and a lawyer will usually only hold one title...


External links



Europe

M.E.D.E.L European association of judges and public prosecutors.
The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
x
OK