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|Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal
The logo features the Court of Final Appeal Building
|Location||8 Jackson Road, Central,
|Composition method||Appointed by the Chief Executive acting in accordance with the recommendation of the Judicial Officers Recommendation Commission with the endorsement of the Legislative Council|
|Authorized by||Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Ordinance|
|Judge term length||The Chief Justice and permanent judges shall vacate their offices when they attain the age of 65, but there is no retiring age for non-permanent judges|
|No. of positions||20 (permanent and non-permanent judges)|
|Website||Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal|
|Since||1 September 2010|
|This article is part of the series: Courts of Hong Kong|
|Law of Hong Kong|
Before 1 July 1997, Hong Kong was a British Dependent Territory, and the power of final adjudication on the laws of Hong Kong was vested in the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council in London. The sovereignty of Hong Kong was transferred from the United Kingdom to the People's Republic of China on 1 July 1997. Based on one country, two systems principle, Hong Kong retains its highly autonomous power and maintains its own legal system. The Court of Final Appeal was thereby established in Central, Hong Kong. Since then, it serves as the court of last resort, thus executing the power of final adjudication on the laws of Hong Kong.
Under the Basic Law, the constitutional document of Hong Kong, the special administrative region remains a common law jurisdiction. Judges from other common law jurisdictions can be recruited and serve in the judiciary as non-permanent judges according to Article 92 of the Basic Law. Judges appointed pursuant to Article 92 have served in the judiciaries of England and Wales, Australia or New Zealand.
The court has the power of final adjudication with respect to the law of Hong Kong as well as the power of final interpretation over local laws including the power to strike down local ordinances on the grounds of inconsistency with the Basic Law. The power of final interpretation of national law including the Basic Law is vested in the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress of China (NPCSC) by virtue of Article 158 of the Basic Law and by the Constitution of the PRC, however national laws which are not explicitly listed in Annex III of the Basic Law are not operative in Hong Kong.
Article 158 delegates such power to the courts of Hong Kong for interpretation while handling court cases. Although this arrangement has attracted criticism of "undermining judicial independence", an interpretation by the NPCSC does not affect any court judgments already rendered. Controversy regarding this power of interpretation arose in the right of abode issue in 1999.
From its inception until September 2015, the court was located in the Former French Mission Building, in Central. In September 2015 the court relocated to the former (until 2011) Legislative Council Building, which was originally the colonial Supreme Court (1912–1985).
The Court of Final Appeal building seen from Chater Road before its renovation
The Court of Final Appeal of Hong Kong was housed in the Former French Mission Building until September 2015
Entrance of the Former French Mission Building
|Title and Name||Date of birth and age||Appointed by||Took office||Prior positions|
|Chief Justice of the Court of Final Appeal
The Hon Mr Justice Geoffrey Ma
|11 January 1956
|Donald Tsang||2010||Barrister since 1978, Recorder of the Court of First Instance of the High Court (2000–2001), Judge of the Court of First Instance (2001–2002), Justice of Appeal of the Court of Appeal (2002–2003), Chief Judge of the High Court in Hong Kong (2003–2010)|
|The Hon Mr Justice Ribeiro||1949
|Tung Chee-Hwa||2000||Former legal academic and lawyer since 1979, Recorder of the High Court (1997–1999), Judge of the High Court (1999–2000), Justice of Appeal of the Court of Appeal (2000)|
|The Hon Mr Justice Tang||7 January 1947
|Leung Chun-ying||2012||Barrister since 1970, Deputy District Judge 1982–1986, Deputy High Court Judge 1986–1995, Recorder for the High Court of Justice/Court of First Instance 1995–2005, Justice of Appeal of the Court of Appeal (2005), Vice-President of the Court of Appeal (2006–2012)|
|The Hon Mr Justice Fok||24 September 1962
|Leung Chun-ying||2013||Barrister in Hong Kong since 1986, Recorder of the Court of First Instance of the High Court (2003–2009), Judge of the Court of First Instance (2010–2011), Justice of Appeal of the Court of Appeal (2011–2013)|
|Chinese title and name||English title and name||Tenure||Prior positions|
|司徒敬法官||The Honourable Mr Justice Frank STOCK||1 September 2010 –||Vice-President of the Court of Appeal of the High Court of Hong Kong|
|夏正民法官||The Honourable Mr Justice Michael John HARTMANN||1 September 2010 –||Judge of the Court of Appeal of Hong Kong|
|包致金法官||The Honourable Mr Justice Syed Kemal Shah BOKHARY||25 October 2012 –||Judge of the Supreme Court of Hong Kong (1989–1993), Justice of Appeal of the Supreme Court of Hong Kong (1993–1997), Permanent Judge of the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal (1997–2012)|
|陳兆愷法官||The Honourable Mr Justice Patrick CHAN Siu-oi||21 October 2013 –||Judge of the District Court (1987–1991), Deputy Registrar of the High Court (1991–1992), Judge of the High Court (1992–1997), Chief Judge of the High Court (1997–2000), Permanent Judge of the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal (2000–2012)|
|Chinese title and name||English title and name||Tenure||Remarks|
|賀輔明勳爵||The Right Honourable the Lord HOFFMANN||12 January 1998 –||Lord of Appeal in Ordinary (1995–2009)|
|苗禮治勳爵||The Right Honourable the Lord MILLETT||28 July 2000 –||Lord of Appeal in Ordinary (1998–2004)|
|紀立信先生||The Honourable Mr Justice GLEESON||1 March 2009 –||Chief Justice of Australia (1998–2008), Chief Justice of New South Wales, (1988–1998)|
|華學佳勳爵||The Right Honourable the Lord WALKER of Gestingthorpe||1 March 2009 –||Justice of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom (2009–2013), Lord of Appeal in Ordinary (2002–2009)|
|廖柏嘉勳爵||The Right Honourable the Lord NEUBERGER of Abbotsbury||1 March 2009 –||President of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom (2012–present), Master of the Rolls (2009–2012), Lord of Appeal in Ordinary (2007–2009)|
|郝廉思勳爵||The Right Honourable the Lord COLLINS of Mapesbury||30 June 2011 –||Justice of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom (2009–2011); Lord of Appeal in Ordinary (2009)|
|簡嘉麒勳爵||The Right Honourable the Lord CLARKE of Stone-cum-Ebony||30 June 2011 –||Justice of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom (2009–present), Master of the Rolls (2005–2009)|
|范理申勳爵||The Right Honourable the Lord PHILLIPS of Worth Matravers||1 October 2012 –||President of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom (2009–2012), Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales (2005–2008), Master of the Rolls (2000–2005)|
|施覺民法官||The Honourable Mr Justice SPIGELMAN||8 April 2013 –||Chief Justice of New South Wales (1998–2011)|
|甘慕賢法官||The Honourable Mr Justice GUMMOW||8 April 2013 –||Justice of the High Court of Australia (1995–2012)|
|范禮全法官||The Honourable Mr Justice FRENCH||31 May 2017 –||Chief Justice of Australia (2008–2017)|
|韋彥德勳爵||The Right Honourable Lord REED||31 May 2017 –||Justice of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom (2012–present), Senator of the College of Justice (1998–2012)|