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Part 3Magistrates' courts

Family proceedings courts and youth courts

49Family proceedings courts

(1)For section 67 of the 1980 Act (family proceedings courts and panels) substitute—

67Family proceedings courts

(1)Magistrates' courts—

(a)constituted in accordance with this section or section 66 of the Courts Act 2003 (judges having powers of District Judges (Magistrates' Courts)), and

(b)sitting for the purpose of hearing family proceedings,

are to be known as family proceedings courts.

(2)A justice of the peace is not qualified to sit as a member of a family proceedings court to hear family proceedings of any description unless he has an authorisation extending to the proceedings.

(3)He has an authorisation extending to the proceedings only if he has been authorised by the Lord Chancellor or a person acting on his behalf to sit as a member of a family proceedings court to hear—

(a)proceedings of that description, or

(b)all family proceedings.

(4)The Lord Chancellor may by rules make provision about—

(a)the grant and revocation of authorisations,

(b)the appointment of chairmen of family proceedings courts, and

(c)the composition of family proceedings courts.

(5)Rules under subsection (4) may confer powers on the Lord Chancellor with respect to any of the matters specified in the rules.

(6)Rules under subsection (4) may be made only after consultation with the Family Procedure Rule Committee.

(7)Rules under subsection (4) are to be made by statutory instrument.

(8)A statutory instrument containing rules under subsection (4) is subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(2)Omit section 68 of the 1980 Act (combined family panels for two or more petty sessions areas).