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Judges in Great Britain

In Britain vast majority of judges (that is, the people who decide what should be done with people who commit crimes) are unpaid. They are called "Magistrates",or "Justices of the Peace" (JPs). They are ordinary citizens who are selected not because they have any legal training but because they have "sound common sense" and understand their fellow human beings. They give up time voluntarily.
A small proportion of judges are not Magistrates. They are called "High Court Judges" and they deal with the most serious crimes, such as those for which the criminal might be sent to prison for more than a year. High Court judges , unlike Magistrates , are paid salaries by the State and have considerable legal training.
Magistrates are selected by special committees in every town and district. Nobody, not even the Magistrates themselves , knows who is on the special committee in the area. The committee tries to draw Magistrates from as wide a variety of professions and social classes as possible.
There are about 30.000 magistrates who judge cases in the lower courts, and only a few hundred judges trained as barristers, who preside in more serious cases. There is no separate training for judges.

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Judges are appointed by the Federational Council, and serve for life. Candidates are recommended by the Qualification Collegia / Supreme Qualification Collegium to the President, who in turn recommends candidates to the Federation Council.

The judges of the Constitutional Court are nominated by the President and appointed by the Federation Council for 12 years,and the judges must be at least 40 years old and must retire at 70 years old. The also must have served as a lawyer for at least 15 years and have a "recognized high qualification" (quotation from Constitutional Court Act) in law.

The Russian Minister of Justice is responsible for appointing judges to regional and city courts; however, in practice, many appointments below the national level still are made by the chief executives of subnational jurisdictions.

Judges of the district courts are appointed by the President. A candidate must be at least 25 years old, is expected to have received a higher legal education (commonly a specialist degree), have at least 5 years of experience in the legal profession, and pass an examination from the Ministry of Justice.

Justices of the peace are usually appointed by the regional legislature, but may also be elected. Justices of the peace require most of the same qualifications.


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