Welcome to the online Magistrates’ Court Sentencing Guidelines
You will find on these pages all the Sentencing Council guidelines and other materials magistrates need when sentencing offenders in court.
You can search for any of the guidelines using ‘Search offences’ on the left-hand side bar.
The explanatory material and fines calculator, as well as other useful documents and links, are also available on the left-hand side bar.
Sentencing guidelines app for use offline
If you do not have access to wifi, the Magistrates’ Court Sentencing Guidelines (MCSG) are also available as an app.
You can access the MCSG app via the Bench Solution iPads or download it to your own iPad free of charge from the App Store.
We launched a new version of the app (2.0.0) on 5 December 2017. We have prepared a quick reference guide for users.
With the new-look app users are able to:
- view the guidelines in portrait as well as landscape
- see guidelines on a single page, instead of clicking through multiple pages
- bookmark offences without leaving the current page
- work more easily with more than one guideline at a time, and
- highlight content to help you keep track of information.
Other new features include an improved fines calculator, an A-to-Z list of offences and a help section.
When we publish new guidelines, we flag changes on the MCSG Updates page of this website and in the app.
New guidelines are added to the list of offences using colour coding to clearly distinguish between those guidelines that have yet to come into force and those already in force.
New guidelines are automatically added to the MCSG app.
Provision of guidelines in alternative formats
While not all magistrates have access to iPads and not all courts have wi-fi, we are continuing to provide the guidelines in pdf format.
Help and support
If there is additional material you need, or you have trouble finding something, please do let us know by emailing MCSGsupport@sentencingcouncil.gsi.gov.uk. We aim to respond to emails within 24 hours. If you need help urgently, please call 020 7071 5793.
This site will continue to grow and have new content and tools added. If you have suggestions of things that would be useful or that you need when sentencing, please do get in touch.