Lay magistrates have come a long way within the English legal system

Lay magistrates have come a long way within the English legal system, going back to the Justices of the Peace Act 1361, which, in response to the crime wave, giving Judicial powers to appoint lay magistrates. Their main focus point as of then and now, has been dealing with criminals, but also exercising certain administrative functions, furthermore until the nineteenth century the business of local government was largely entrusted to them. Lay people perform an important role, bringing back valuable and vital experience, background and common sense of ordinary people to the justice system, and freeing large amounts of time serving their community and country. The public views the magistrates as a prime example of a form of role models, respected citizens of the community, that the government has sworn to promote.