About Vermont JPs

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Are you a Vermont JP?

How to become a Vermont Justice of the Peace

Information from the Vermont Justice of the Peace Guide

  • To become a justice of the peace, you must be elected at a general election or be appointed to fill a vacancy. Although elected by a town, justices of the peace are actually county officers.
  • A person must be a legal voter of the town and have been nominated by party caucus or the town committee in order to be elected justice of the peace. A person may also run as an independent.
  • The number of justices of the peace for every town are determined based on population, and the term begins on February 1 of the year following the general election, and runs for two years.

Duties and Responsibilities of a Justice of the Peace

Vermont Justices of the Peace may perform marriages anywhere in the state. Discrimination on the basis of race, sex, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, age or disability is forbidden, and goes against JPus’ code of ethics as well.

In addition to performing marriages, JPs have other duties. Justices of the peace must serve as election officials (and may deliver absentee ballots to voters). In addition, they must sit as members of the town board for abatement of taxes to determine whether a taxpayer’s tax obligation should be forgiven. They also sit to hear and decide appeals when citizens do not agree with the final decision of the listers.

Justices of the peace may administer oaths and may act as a notary public. Justices of the peace may also serve as a magistrate when so commissioned by the Supreme Court.

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