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Law of England and Wales

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Courts of England and Wales

A Lord Justice of Appeal is an ordinary judge of the Court of Appeal of England and Wales, the court that hears appeals from the High Court of Justice, and represents the second highest level of judge in the courts of England and Wales



The number of Lords Justices was fixed at five by the Supreme Court of Judicature Act 1881, but has since been increased. Lords Justices are selected from the ranks of senior judges, in practice High Court judges with lengthy experience, appointed by the Queen on the recommendation of the Prime Minister.


Applications for permission to appeal a ruling of an inferior court (usually from the Crown Court in criminal matters and the High Court of Justice in civil matters but in some instances from a County Court) are heard by a single Lord Justice, and a full appeal is heard by three Lords Justices.

Title and form of address

In court, a Lord Justice is referred to as My Lord or Your Lordship if male, or as My Lady or Your Ladyship if female. The style of 'Lord Justice' is technically used for men and women, although 'Lady Justice' is used in practice. 'The Right Honourable' (or The Rt Hon) is also used. For example, Sir Joseph Bloggs would be referred to as The Rt Hon Lord Justice Bloggs and Dame Jane Bloggs as The Rt Hon Lady Justice Bloggs, for as long as they continue to hold office. When there is already or has until recently been a judge with the same surname as a new appointee, the new judge will often use a first name as part of his or her official title. Many judges have done this, such as Lord Justice Lawrence Collins (Sir Lawrence Antony Collins).

When referring to a Lord Justice of Appeal in a legal context, the judge is identified by use of the surname (or first name and surname if appropriate), followed by the letters 'LJ'. For example, Lord Justice Bloggs or Lady Justice Bloggs would be referred to as "Bloggs LJ". Where several judges are listed the double letters 'LJJ' are used; for example, "Bloggs, Smith and Jones LJJ". The style was provided for by the Supreme Court of Judicature Act 1877.

All Lords Justices hold knighthoods, granted upon appointment to the High Court (usually as a Knight Bachelor for men and Dames Commander of the Order of the British Empire for women). By convention Lords Justices are appointed to the Privy Council, entitling them to the honorific 'The Right Honourable'.

Court Dress

In court, a Lord Justice's apparel consists of a black silk gown, court coat or waistcoat and a short bench wig. On ceremonial occasions more elaborate robes and wigs are worn.

See also

External links

This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain.



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