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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Attorney-General and Minister for Justice
    The Honourable Jarrod Bleijie

    New roles for Justices of the Peace

    Attorney-General and Minister for Justice
    The Honourable Jarrod Bleijie

    Tuesday, April 30, 2013

    New roles for Justices of the Peace

    Justices of the Peace will soon be able to play a greater role in Queensland’s justice system, following changes passed by the Newman Government today.

    Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Jarrod Bleijie said amendments to the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act would allow certain minor matters to be heard by JPs.

    “We appreciate the invaluable role that Justices of the Peace play in our justice system,” Mr Bleijie said.

    “These respected citizens volunteer their time and devote their energy to serving justice in Queensland and this initiative rewards those JPs who want to contribute further.

    “A 6 month pilot program will soon utilise their skills to come up with common sense solutions to minor civil disputes.”

    Mr Bleijie said under the trial, one legally qualified and one non-legally qualified Justice of the Peace would hear and adjudicate disputes of up to $5,000 in QCAT.

    “The trial will be used to assess whether the use of JPs in QCAT help reduce backlogs by freeing up QCAT adjudicators to deal with more complex matters,” he said.

    “We will also be interested to see whether this reduces the cost of hearing disputes and improves the administration of Queensland’s justice system.”

    32 legally qualified and 81 non-legally qualified Justices of the Peace have undergone specialised training and will soon be recommended for appointment by the Governor-in-Council.

    The training included the fundamental principles of respect for the law, fairness (encompassing natural justice and procedural fairness), as well as modules on the subject matter constituting QCAT's minor civil disputes jurisdiction.

    The trial will begin on the 3rd of June.

    [ENDS] 30 April 2013

    Media Contact: Katherine Hornbuckle 0402 862 351