Previous FAQs were incorporated into the new JP handbook, released in January 2014.
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As part of providing JP services, a JP should not ask or prompt a person to make a donation or purchase, even if it is for charitable purposes.
Doing so may create the perception that the JP service is carried out in exchange for the donation or purchase. This perception risks undermining community confidence that JPs perform their functions impartially.
Some JPs perform their duties in public places where charity tins or raffle ticket books are located next to them. Those JPs should take care to separate their JP functions from any charity collection or raffle ticket selling activities.
For example, a JP who is staffing a JP desk in a shopping mall may offer raffle tickets to a passerby, but must not offer or sell them to a person who is seeking the JP’s services.
A JP should not accept any ongoing benefit from a person for whom (or an organisation for which) the JP may be expected to provide JP services.
The Code of Conduct for JPs states that ‘A JP must not charge a fee or accept a gift for providing JP services’. Generally speaking, accepting a minor offer of hospitality such as a cup of tea or free parking in relation to an isolated instance of providing JP services would not be considered a breach of the Code of Conduct.
However JPs who are given minor benefits such as free parking or refreshments on any ongoing basis should not perform JP services to any person or organisation who provides or facilitates that benefit.
For example, Marian staffs a JP desk at the Eastcliff shopping centre. Eastcliff’s manager arranges for Marian to have free parking during those times. When the manager needs a JP to witness the statutory declaration of one of his security officers, Marian explains she has to refer him to another JP. This avoids any possible perception that Marian may have witnessed the declaration in return for having free parking.
See Section 4.4 of the JP handbook.
See Section 4.3 of the JP handbook.