Whether in mainland China or in the Australian Chinese community, the title of the Justices of the Peace (the Justices of the Peace) often appears on some people's business cards or in media reports. Who are the Australian justices of the peace? What responsibilities can they all perform and how can they become Australian justices of the peace? We use this short article to explain.
The Justice of the Peace in Australia is neither an official title nor a symbol of social status, and has no privileges other than the obligation to perform their duties. Simply put, a justice of the peace is a person who has been approved by the relevant government department and is qualified to witness copies of legal documents or certification documents.
However, it is composed of a group of people who are enthusiastic about public welfare. The main duty of justices of the peace is to prove to those in need that the legally binding copy of the document is consistent with the original. People in Australia need a lot of supporting documents and their copies when they encounter problems in handling immigration, buying a house, litigation, taxation, etc. in their daily lives. Proving that these copies are true is a complicated and cumbersome task. The few lawyers or the few impartial lawyers are incapable of failing to pay. Moreover, lawyers and impartial lawyers usually charge fees for doing these things. It is this kind of demand that creates the existence of justices of the peace.
The job content of justices of the peace does not require too many skills. They are responsible for witnessing the authenticity of the documents and do not care about the correctness of the contents of the documents. The justices of the peace must ensure that the copy is consistent with the original when certifying the document; there should be no blanks in the filled position of the document to prevent other content from being filled in afterwards; the writing paper must conform to the specifications to prevent it from being exposed and replaced. Do not write with a pencil to prevent it from being altered afterwards, etc. The law stipulates that all service content of justices of the peace must be free.
How to apply to be a Justice of the Peace?
Due to the above-mentioned backgrounds, it is naturally not particularly difficult to apply for justices of the peace. The main law governing justices of the peace in Australia is the Justices of the Peace Act 2002. According to the Act, all states have set the conditions for applying for justices of the peace in their own states. To put it simply, any Australian citizen who has reached the age of XNUMX and does not need to graduate from high school can become a Justice of the Peace if he has not been sentenced to a certain period of punishment.
Applications for justices of the peace generally need to be nominated by state legislators. Since state legislators usually don’t directly know people who want to apply to become justices of the peace, in order to be nominated by state legislators, the usual approach is to first have two professionals considered to be reliable in the society, such as registered lawyers who have worked for five years. Recommendation letters from teachers, nurses, etc. (justices of the peace are not eligible to recommend other applicants to become justices of the peace). After having two letters of recommendation, members of parliament usually nominate.
Therefore, on the whole, almost every good-behaved Australian can become a justice of the peace, but to truly become a justice of the peace does require a high degree of enthusiasm for serving the society, because the work of a justice of the peace is not only not taking money but also has errors or irregularities. Certification duties will also be punished by up to 2 years in prison.
Under what circumstances will justices of the peace be cancelled?
The term of office of a justice of the peace is 5 years. You can apply for re-election before the expiration of the term. If you do not want to continue to serve or if one of the following situations occurs, the title of justice of the peace will be cancelled:
1) Submit written resignation;
2) Dismissed by the government when: a) bankruptcy; b) mental disorder; c) sentenced to 12 months or more imprisonment for crimes in New South Wales;
3) Failure to take the oath within 4 months after receiving the appointment notice;
4) The Minister of Justice believes that the character of this person is no longer suitable for serving as a justice of the peace, for example, the certification is not the original, etc.;
5) The Minister of Justice believes that the person cannot continue to properly perform the duties of a justice of the peace;
6) The justice of the peace is in criminal proceedings against him (her).