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How to become a Court Administrative Officer

court administrative officer careers

What does a Court Administrative Officer do?

Court administrative officers and assistants help with the day to day running of the courts and their supporting offices. They book dates and times for court hearings, allocate cases to courtrooms, and prepare lists showing the day's court sessions.

Court administrative officers are also responsible for collecting records and reports on each case for the judge or magistrate; carrying out the court's orders after a hearing; and dealing with enquiries from the public. Experienced administrative officers may assist in court by taking notes for the court clerk.

Some administrative officers work in a separate section specialising in fines and fees. They may collect fines, send out compensation or maintenance payments, produce summonses, and help members of the public to complete forms.

What's the working environment like working as a Court Administrative Officer?

Court administrative officers usually work between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday. However, they may be expected to work some overtime if a special hearing is held in the evenings or during a weekend. Part-time work, job sharing and flexitime may be available.

What does it take to become a Court Administrative Officer?

To be a court administrative officer you should:

  • have a methodical, well-organised approach
  • be tactful, diplomatic and respect confidentiality
  • have good communication skills with the ability to explain matters clearly to other people
  • have a calm, understanding approach with a polite and helpful manner
  • be able to avoid becoming emotionally involved in distressing cases
  • be computer literate
  • be able to work well in a team and to cope with the demands of a busy schedule
  • be interested in the law.

Court Administrative Officer Career Opportunities

Her Majesty's Court Service (effective from 1st April 2005) brings together magistrates' courts and the court service into one organisation. It is an agency of the Department of Constitutional Affairs and oversees all courts in England and Wales.

The Scottish Courts Service, an executive agency of the Scottish Executive, is responsible for running the 49 sheriff courts, the Court of Session and the High Court of Justiciary. The Scottish district courts are run by local authorities.

The Northern Ireland Court Service is part of the Civil Service and oversees all courts in the country.

Administrative assistants may be promoted to administrative officer and then to executive officer grade. There are opportunities to transfer to courts in other areas in order to gain promotion.

In magistrates’ courts, promotion within administrative grades depends on ability and experience. Some administrative staff in magistrates' courts train to become clerks of court who are legally qualified advisers to the magistrates (see Court Clerk profile).

Further information

If you would like to know anything about Court Administrative Officer that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.

Her Majesty's Court Service
Clive House
Petty France
London
SW1H 9HD
Tel: 020 7189 2000
www.hmcourts-service.gov.uk

Scottish Court Service
Hayweight House
23 Lauriston Street
Edinburgh
EH3 9DQ
Tel: 0131 229 9200
www.scotcourts.gov.uk

Northern Ireland Civil Service Recruitment Service
Orchard House
40 Foyles Street
Londonderry
BT48 6AT
Tel: 028 7131 9900
www.nicsrecruitment.gov.uk