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The Judiciary Act 2016


[Passed 5-2, Royal Assent: 2 June 2016]

An Act to provide for the creation of the Court of Common Pleas and the Court of Lord High Steward, dissolve The Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, to authorize the creation of procedures for cases heard before the Peers of the Realm, to amend certain provisions of the Charter of Scone Act, and for other purposes.

BE IT ENACTED by the King’s Most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords and Burgesses in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

1. SHORT TITLE

This act may be cited for all purposes as “Judiciary Act 2016.”

2. CREATION OF A COURT OF COMMON PLEAS

a. A Court of Common Pleas is established to be a court of first instance for every civil and criminal matter before the Kingdom, excepting cases touching upon acts of treason. This court shall be inferior to the Court of His Majesty the King in Parliament.

b. His Majesty in Council may appoint up to three five judges to serve on the bench of the Court of Common Pleas who are learned in law.

c. In the event the Court of Common Pleas should be depopulated of judges to hear a case before the Court, His Majesty in Council may appoint a citizen learned in law to preside over the proceedings for the duration of that case before the Court of Common Pleas. His Majesty in Council may also cause an order-in-council to be issued to place the case before His Majesty the King in Parliament instead.

3. CREATION OF A COURT OF LORD HIGH STEWARD

a. A Court of Lord High Steward is established with the appellate jurisdiction of His Majesty the King in Parliament in the event Parliament is prorogued or dissolved, and to hear cases concerning treason in accordance with the provisions of section 3.B below. This court shall be superior to the Court of Common Pleas and inferior to the Court of His Majesty the King in Parliament.


b. In the event that His Majesty shall have issued a summons for Parliament to return within one week of an instance of a case being brought before the Court of Lord High Steward, the court shall withhold the matter for the consideration of His Majesty the King in Parliament.

c. The Lord High Steward of the Kingdom of Scone shall preside over all matters before the Court of Lord High Steward.

d. In the event the Lord High Steward is unable to preside over the Court of Lord High Steward, the Lord Chancellor shall preside instead. In the event the Lord Chancellor is also unable to preside over the Court of Lord High Steward, His Majesty in Council shall be free to appoint a citizen learned in law to preside over the proceedings for the duration of that case before the Court of Lord High Steward.

e. Matters coming to the Court of Lord High Steward through its appellate jurisdiction shall be first referred to the Lord High Steward or to a panel composing the Lord High Steward and two other Lords learned in Law in order to determine whether or not an appeal should be granted. If it is granted, the matter shall be sent to the Court of Lord High Steward for consideration which shall consist either of the Lord High Steward presiding alone, or with a panel of three. The Lord High Steward or their designee shall oversee the process of handling appeals and make the appropriate determinations required above.

f. Decisions of the Court of Lord High Steward may only be appealed to the Court of His Majesty the King in Parliament in the event of procedural impropriety, a misapplication of law, or the emergence of new evidence which was not available during the trial before the Court of Lord High Steward.

5. DISSOLUTION OF THE COURT OF HIS MAJESTY IN COUNCIL

a. The Court of His Majesty in Council shall be dissolved forthwith, and any judges currently assigned to this court shall be re-assigned to other courts by the Privy Council.

b. The judicial functions previously managed by the Court of His Majesty in Council on first instance shall be delegated to the Court of Common Pleas.


c. The judicial functions previously managed by the Court of His Majesty in Council in its appellate jurisdiction shall be delegated to the Court of His Majesty the King in Parliament.

6. AUTHORIZING THE CREATION OF PROCEDURES FOR THE HOUSE OF PEERS

a. When sitting jointly, Parliament shall be empowered to create procedures related to considering judicial matters which may come before the House of Peers from time to time through the passage of a resolution.

b. In the event the Lords and Burgesses shall sit in separate houses, the House of Peers shall be able to create procedures related to considering judicial matters which may come before it from time to time through the passage of a resolution.

c. Any procedures established through resolution may be amended through new resolutions, but only when a judicial matter is not pending before the House of Peers for its consideration.

d. In the event it is necessary for the Court of Lord High Steward to be constituted, that Court shall regard the relevant procedures in the House of Peers as strongly persuasive for the discharge of its business.

e. Any procedures established through resolution are superseded by Acts of Parliament

7. AMENDMENTS TO THE CHARTER OF SCONE ACT

a. Section VII.1 of the Charter of Scone is hereby amended to read as follows, “His Majesty the King in Parliament constitutes the highest court within and over the Kingdom of Scone, beyond which there is no appeal. A Judicial Committee of the Peers of the Realm, presided over by the Chancellor of the Kingdom of Scone (under any style or title by which he shall be known), and otherwise comprised of Peers learned in the Laws of the Realm and appointed by the Sovereign on the advice of the Privy Council, shall hear and adjudicate in His Majesty’s name all cases appealed to the King in Parliament from lower courts. His Majesty the King in Parliament shall be the court of first instance and of final appeal for all cases touching upon acts of treason.”


b. Section VII.2 of the Charter of Scone is hereby repealed in its entirety.

8. COMMENCEMENT

This legislation and all the provisions therein shall come into force upon receiving the Royal Assent.

SCHEDULE:

THE MEANING OF CERTAIN TERMS EMPLOYED IN THIS ACT:

“Learned in law” shall refer to any individual who has successfully completed an examination in law in The Kingdom of Scone and the Lord High Chancellor of the Kingdom of Scone.

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