Retired judges of Australia's High Court, Federal Court, and Family Court retain the title "The Honourable" for life. 'The Honourable Katharine Brooke' is used on envelopes and name tags. You start a letter with "Dear Justice Brooke" as a courtesy. If she was married she would be called "Mrs." followed by her husband's first name.
Judges are not required to retain their titles after retirement, but most do so for professional recognition and out of respect. Some have gone as far as to say that they no longer consider themselves to be judges at all but to be "former judges".
There are currently only two living former judges in Australia: Virginia Gaudron and Murray Gleeson. Both were judges of the Federal Court; both are well known within the legal community; and both use "Mr." before their names. Virginia Gaudron was born in Melbourne on March 24th, 1925; she is the daughter of Australian parents who had moved to London before she was born. She was educated at St Paul's School and then studied law at Oxford University where she graduated with a Bachelor of Civil Law in 1949. In 1950, she was called to the Bar in England and Australia and began practising law in Melbourne. In 1975, she was appointed a Judge of the Federal Court and has been sitting on the court ever since.
"The Honourable (complete name) Judge of ____________," the entire title reads. "Mr./Madam Justice (name)" in conversation. "Dear Mr. or Madam Justice (name)," in correspondence.
In court, they are still addressed as "My Lord" or "My Lady." High Court Judges are traditionally addressed as "The Hon. Mr. Justice Bugginwallop." They are not Privy Councillors and are not addressed as "Right Honourable." If you are writing regarding a professional topic, address the envelope as "The Hon. Mr. Justice Bugginwallop."
If she is a woman Judge, then you must refer to her as "Your Ladyship." Otherwise, you will be in trouble with the law!
In England and Wales, women have the right to hold office of honorific degree. That means a woman can be a judge or a lord chancellor or even a queen. However, it is not usual for women to hold those positions. When addressing a woman judge, it is appropriate to use the title "Your Ladyship." It is also acceptable to use "Lady" or "Ma'am" if the woman is well-known.
In Australia, women have the right to hold office of honorific degree. That means a woman can be a judge or a governor-general.
In Canada, women have the right to hold office of honorific degree.
To write a letter to a magistrate judge, use the judicial honorific "Honorable, Magistrate Judge" and address it to her at the courthouse. Instead of "Sincerely," or something similar, begin the letter with "Dear Judge:" and end it with "Respectfully submitted." Do not omit the word "Magistrate."
If you are writing to more than one judge, then write each letter individually. Each letter should include the name of the court along with the address for that court. You can find their addresses on the back of any mail received from the court.
In addition to the judicial honorific, letters to magistrate judges should include their title. Magistrate judges are appointed by district courts to serve as temporary judges when they are unable to hear cases due to unavailability or disqualification. Thus, their title will be "Magistrate Judge."
Letters to judges should begin with "Sir/Madam:" or "Your Honor." If they are male, then add "Mr." before their surname. Female judges do not receive an honorific title; thus, letters to them should only include their first name.
Judges have different levels of authority. At a minimum, all judges must be addressed as "Sir" or "Madam." More senior judges may be called "Judge" alone; however, this is uncommon.
Most judges can be addressed as "Dear Judge" at the opening of a letter (or "Dear Justice" if they serve on a U.S. state or federal Supreme Court, or in certain foreign courts). When addressing the envelope, include the judge's full title as well as the complete name of the court in which he or she serves. For example, an email to a Federal District Court judge would go out as follows: "Dear Judge Jones: I am writing to request that the above-captioned case be assigned to your courtroom."
If the judge is a member of another court within the same government body, such as a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, then write the letter to that court instead. For example, an email to a judge on the Fifth Circuit would go out as follows: "Dear Judge Stewart: I am writing to request that the above-captioned case be assigned to your courtroom."
Some courts have separate divisions that handle different types of cases. A letter should always be sent to the court directly, even if you want it to reach a particular judge. For example, if you are trying to convince the judge on the Third Circuit to take up your case, then send a letter to the court at 3 Church Street, Richmond, Virginia 23219.
In addition to the court division, some judges have chambers offices with other judges.
Outside of the Supreme Court, always address your message to "The Honorable (complete name)." Include the addressee's name and address on the letter and envelope. Salutation THE FEDERAL COURTS The United States Supreme Court: The Supreme Court's Chief Justice The Right Honorable (full name) Dear (surname) Chief Justice: Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court The Address of the United States Supreme Court
A retiring judge should be addressed as "The Honorable (Full Name)." The only stipulation is that the judge was not removed from office and instead retired honorably. The title should be written completely but might be reduced to "the Hon." for space concerns.
The title "Honourable" is used with the person's complete name, for example, "The Honourable A.B. Lastname," or "The Honourable Firstname Lastname," or "The Honourable Mr./Ms. Lastname." In writing or speech, avoid saying "Honourable Jones." Say "Jones Honours You."
In English law, an honour is a distinction bestowed upon someone in recognition of good service. Only persons who have attained the rank of colonel can be granted honorary commissions in the British Army, for example. When referring to an honor, it is customary to add "Sir" or "Madam" depending on the age and position of the recipient.
In Canada, members of the Canadian Royal Family are referred to as "His/Her Royal Highness", with "Mr./Mrs." added if appropriate. Other people hold various styles of office; for example, senators are "His/Her Excellency", the governor general is "Your Excellency", and prime ministers are "Mr. Prime Minister".
In New Zealand, judges are referred to as "His/Her Lordship", while other officials use "Lord" or "Lady".
In Australia, judges are referred to as "His/Her Honor", while other officials use "Dr." or "Mister".