Magistrates' Allowances

Magistrates are unpaid volunteer members of the judiciary, however allowances may be claimed for certain expense

Expenses can cover certain costs, including travel and subsistence where required. 

It is expected that magistrates will commit to a minimum of 26 half-day sittings in court each year. The law requires employers to grant magistrates sufficient time off work to enable them to fulfil their magisterial duties; please check the Employment Rights Act to ensure you know your rights.

Magistrates who suffer a loss of earnings as a result of their duties can claim a loss allowance, usually at a set rate; evidence of financial loss must be provided before magistrates can make a claim. 

Below you will see the rates of allowance for financial loss, travel and subsistence (as of May 2010). Please note that these are maximum figures. 

Financial Loss Allowance

Allowance Type

Allowance Rate

Gross Rate

(self employed justices)

Up to four hours


Over four hours


Net Rate

(other justices)

Up to four hours


Over four hours


Motor Vehicle Allowance


Allowance Rate in Pence per Mile

Engine Capacity

Up to 1100cc

1101 – 1549cc

Over 1550cc

Standard MVA




Other Rates not dependent on engine size
Additional rate per passenger


Bicycle rate


Subsistence Allowances

Allowance Type

Allowance Rate

Night Subsistence: outside London


Night Subsistence: within London


Day Subsistence: 4 to 8 hours absence


Day Subsistence: 8 to 12 hours absence


Day Subsistence: over 12 hours absence