This page provides you with information on some of the specialised courts in England and Wales, including tribunals.
The Tribunals Courts and Enforcement Act 2007 created a single unified structure for most tribunals, divided into the First-tier Tribunal and the Upper Tribunal. The First-tier Tribunal and the Upper Tribunal each have separate chambers covering different subject matters, which bring together similar jurisdictions. Details of the tribunals can be found on the website of Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals service.
The first-tier tribunal is a generic tribunal. Its main function is to hear appeals against decisions of the government in areas where the tribunal has been given jurisdiction. For some purposes, it has jurisdiction throughout the UK. The first-tier tribunal is currently divided into six chambers:
The upper tribunal mainly but not exclusively, decides appeals resulting from decisions in the First-tier Tribunal. It is a superior Court of Record and also has power to deal with judicial review case in certain circumstances.
The Upper Tribunal consists of:
A feature of tribunals is their expertise in the subject matter of the appeals. The structure is such that tribunals judges are experts in the law of their jurisdiction and non-legal members are either professionally qualified or qualified by experience in their field. Panels for individual types of appeals are varied depending on the subject of the appeal.
The Employment Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal are outside the unified tribunals’ structure but are supported by HMCTS. The tribunal’s role is to carry out the administrative tasks necessary to enable claims to employment tribunals and subsequent appeals to the Employment Appeal Tribunal to be determined.
In England and Wales the work of the Administrative Court includes administrative law jurisdiction over England and Wales, as well as supervisory jurisdiction over inferior courts and tribunals.
There are a number of specialist courts in England and Wales:
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