They are more senior but in a different region of the English “county court.”

So how does this work?

2 Answers 2


Yes, if it's a binding precedent.

And it could be the other way round, also. The main difference is that district judges hear the higher value, more complex and/or protracted cases.

  • But anyway, what makes it a binding precedent? What determines what type of ruling is each one? Commented Mar 18, 2023 at 2:50
  • And did you mean to say that circuit judges hear the higher value etc cases? Honestly, I’m sorry to say it but I have to say that you have hardly really answered the question at all. Commented Mar 18, 2023 at 2:52
  • Are you arguing that trial court judgments are binding precedents?
    – ohwilleke
    Commented Mar 18, 2023 at 18:41
  • @ohwilleke me, or Rick? Commented Mar 18, 2023 at 21:50
  • 1
    @Seekinganswers Rick.
    – ohwilleke
    Commented Mar 18, 2023 at 22:16


Your circuit judge could be a member of the Crown Court, the County Court or a specialized sub-division of the High Court of Justice.

The hierarchy of the courts of England and Wales is:

Court hierarchy England and Wales

The Crown Court and the County Court are the same level so they do not create binding precedent on themselves or each other. If your circuit judge is a member of the High Court then their decisions do bind the County Court.

England and Wales is a unified jurisdiction so it doesn’t matter where the courts are located. There is no such thing as a “circuit split” as can happen in the US Federal system.

  • Sorry my circuit judges were intended to be ruling on civil case in the county court. Thanks Commented Mar 18, 2023 at 21:52
  • Please see the edit and clarification to my question. Commented Mar 18, 2023 at 22:16
  • 1
    @Seekinganswers A CJ and a DJ both make decisions for the County Court. Neither outranks the other.
    – Dale M
    Commented Mar 18, 2023 at 23:07
  • 1
    How can that be when one appeals from a DJ to a CJ? Commented Mar 18, 2023 at 23:14
  • 1
    I thought one appeals from a CCDJ to a CCCJ and then from a CCCJ to the EWHC, and only then to the EWCA. Commented Mar 19, 2023 at 0:06

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