1870: 33 Victoria c.6: Judges Jurisdiction

1870: 33 Victoria c.6: An Act to extend the Jurisdiction of the Judges of the Superior Courts of Common Law at Westminster.

[25th March 1870.]

WHEREAS it is expedient to amend the law relating to the jurisdiction of the Judges of the Superior Courts of Common Law at Westminster:

Be it therefore enacted by the Queen’s most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

[Short title of Act.]

1. This Act may be cited for all purposes as “The Judges Jurisdiction Act, 1870.”

[Chief Judge, &c. may request assistance.]

2. In case any one of Her Majesty’s Superior Courts of Common Law at Westminster shall require assistance in the despatch of business pending in such Court, and shall by the Chief Judge of such Court make request in writing to the Chief Judge of any other of the said Courts for the assistance of a Puisne Judge of such last-mentioned Court in the execution of the duties of the first-mentioned Court, either by sitting in Court or in any manner and for any purpose whatsoever, and such request may be either general or special, and for such time as may be therein specified; and the Chief Judge to whom such request is made shall thereupon refer such request to the Judges of the Court of which he is Chief Judge, and the Judges of such Court may (if the business pending in his Court do not peremptorily require the attendance of all the Puisne Judges) appoint one of such Puisne Judges to assist the first-mentioned Court, and the Puisne Judge so appointed shall in all matters of which he may take cognizance have the same jurisdiction in all respects as if he were a Puisne Judge of the Court to which the Chief Judge belongs who requests his assistance.

[Evidence of request by Chief Judge not required.]

3. No evidence shall be required of such request by such Chief Judge in order to found the jurisdiction of such Puisne Judge.

[Two divisions of any Court may be sitting at one time in banc.]

4. Any of the Superior Courts of Common Law at Westminster may sit in two divisions at one time in banc; and each of such divisions shall exercise the same power and authority

as might be exercised by the whole Court so sitting in banc; and where necessary any Puisne Judge of either of the other Superior Courts may, on such request as above mentioned of a Chief Judge, assist in holding such sitting in the same manner and with the same authority as if he were a judge of the Court sitting in banc.

[Any number of sittings may be held at Nisi Prius at one time.]

5. Any number of judges may at one and the same time hold a sitting or sittings at Nisi Prius either in London or Westminster, as may be deemed expedient by the Court.

[Definition of Chief Judge.]

6. The expression “Chief Judge” for the purposes of this Act shall mean the Chief Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench, the Chief Justice of the Court of Common Pleas, and the Chief Baron of the Exchequer, and where the office of any such Chief Judge is for the time being vacant, the senior Puisne Judge of the Court in which such office may be vacant.

Source: Public General Statutes,1870.