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Anyone who has been convicted of a criminal offence in England, Wales or Northern Ireland can apply to the CCRC. We can look at cases from the Crown Court or a magistrates’ court. Anyone convicted of a criminal offence in the Court Martial or the Service Civilian Court since after 1st October 2009 can also apply to us.
One of the most important things to think about before you apply to us is whether you have already tried to appeal. The CCRC was set up to deal with potential miscarriages of justice for people who have already lost an appeal at court. If you have not appealed in the normal way through the court where you were convicted, you should try to appeal there first. We usually tell people who come to us before they have appealed that they need to go back and try to appeal in the normal way. You can still try to appeal even if you think you have missed the deadline for appealing.
Applying to the CCRC before you have appealed will usually be a waste of your time. In some unusual cases there are “exceptional circumstances”, or special reasons, that mean we can look at a case even though the person has not tried to appeal before. If you are thinking about applying to us before you have tried to appeal your case, you will need to carefully the “What are “exceptional circumstances” section in our guidance.
The CCRC can only look at criminal convictions. Not everything that happens in the courts has to do with the criminal law. We do not have any power to look at civil cases and things like breaches of court orders such as ASBOs are not usually criminal offences. We cannot deal with things that happen in County Courts or Family Courts or tribunals. We can only deal with cases from the criminal courts of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. There is a separate Scottish CCRC which deals with Criminal convictions in the Scottish courts. Convictions in the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man can only be considered by the Home Office. This guidance for potential applicants is to help people decide whether or not they should be making an application to the CCRC. If you want more detailed information about our casework policies and procedures, you should look at the documents called Formal Memoranda on our Casework policies page.
Find out here How to Apply.