Justice Of The Peace

Justices of the Peace were established in Britain to uphold the King’s Peace and deal with minor offences. The first JP in Australia was Governor Arthur Phillip in 1788. Justices of the Peace have performed essential para-legal services in Australia ever since. Today Queensland has over 90,000 Justices of the Peace (JP) and Commissioners of Declarations (C.Dec) volunteering in our community making them the largest volunteer organisation in the state.

 

What do JPs do?  |  Who can become a JP?  |  Thinking about Becoming a JP?  |  Need a JP?

 

What do JPs and C.Decs do?

Justices of the Peace and Commissioners for Declarations perform a variety of administrative and judicial functions within the legal system. They act as an impartial witness to many important documents. See below.
 
 
A Commissioner for Declarations can perform the following duties:
  • Certifying copies
  • Witnessing statutory declarations
  • Witnessing affidavits
  • Witnessing wills
  • Witnessing Powers of Attorney
  • Witnessing Land Title documents
  • Witnessing documents for Births, Deaths & Marriages
  • Taking oaths and affirmations
 
A Justice of the Peace (Qualified) can perform the above and the following judicial duties:
  • Attending records of interviews
  • Hearing bail applications
  • Issuing summonses
  • Issuing arrest warrants and search warrants
  • Other duties (on application)

 

Who can become a JP or a C.Dec?

  • You have to be an Australian Citizen
  • You have to be correctly listed on the electoral roll
  • You have to be 18 years of age or over
  • You have to be of good character
  • Not have any more than two traffic offences in the last four years (excluding parking fines)
  • Not to have a drink-driving related offence in the last five years, or been convicted of more than two offences at any time (excluding traffic offences)
  • Not have been convicted of any offence in the last five years or any more than two offences at any time (excluding traffic offences)
  • Never be convicted of an indictable offence at any time
  • Not be an undischarged bankrupt
 
Do JPs and C.Decs get paid?
  • No. JPs and C.Decs are volunteers in the community and work at public signing facilities in shopping centres, courthouses, workplaces and on an individual basis. It is an offence for JPs and C.Decs to charge for their services.
 

 

Thinking about becoming a JP?

To become a Justice of the Peace (Qualified) (JP Qual) or Commissioner for Declarations (C.Dec) you need to complete a training course to provide you with a range of knowledge, skills and generic and specific competencies to perform the duties appropriate to the level of appointment. You will also be given an opportunity to gain skills and knowledge based on the handbooks relevant to your chosen course.

As a JP or Cdec you will handle important documents which could have a significant impact on a person’s life—it is therefore important that you are properly trained in how to provide all services and handle all situations.

To learn more about becoming a JP Qual or a C.Dec download the following guide:

Mark Furner MP - So you want to become a JP? [2015]

Or you can use the online form: Here.

 

 

Do you need the services of a Justice of the Peace?

The Queensland Government's 'JPs in the Community' program operates in shopping centres to provide Justice of the Peace services to local communities.  Justices of the Peace volunteer their time, making it easier for you to access JP services and have your important documents witnessed.  

Please check this list for JPs serving in the community at designated times.

To find a JP after hours, you can search for a JP in your area online. Or you can click on the links below to download a list of JPs and C.Decs by suburb in the Ferny Grove Electorate.