Tribunals are specialist judicial bodies, which decide disputes in a particular area of law.
Tribunals decide a wide range of cases ranging from workplace disputes between employers and employees to appeals against decisions of Government departments (including social security benefits; immigration and asylum; and tax credits).
Some tribunals are administered through local authorities (for example the School Exclusion Panels), some by government departments (e.g. Valuation Tribunals) and others through Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS), an agency of the Ministry of Justice.
Tribunals often sit as a panel, incorporating a legally qualified tribunal judge, as well as panel members with specific areas of expertise. They hear evidence from witnesses but decide the case themselves. Tribunals have limited powers (depending on the jurisdiction of the case) to impose fines and penalties or to award compensation and costs. Other types of tribunal decisions might result in the allowance or disallowance of a benefit, leave or refusal to stay in the UK or the extent of provision of special educational help for school-age children.
Tribunal appointments can be held on a fee-paying or salaried basis. The Judicial Appointments Commission is normally responsible for tribunal appointments.
For more information visit: https://www.judiciary.uk/about-the-judiciary/who-are-the-judiciary/judicial-roles/tribunals