More JPs needed across the Coffs Coast

The Coffs Central JP desk with Irene and Terry Perry.

A 100 PERCENT increase in Justice of the Peace (JP) desks across the Coffs Coast means more JPs are needed to provide the key community service.

With eight JP desks now operating across the region, the local additions are at Coffs Harbour Library, Woolgoolga Library and Dorrigo Library.

NuEra Kitchen and Bathroom Renovations PTY LTDAdvertise with News of The Area today.
It’s worth it for your business.
Message us.
Phone us – (02) 4981 8882.
Email us –

Further north, Yamba Library is also gaining a new JP desk.

“Whilst the new desks have a small number of clients, we are sure it will grow as people become aware of the service,” local JP Mike Blewitt to News Of The Area.

Busiest of all is the JP desk located at Park Beach Plaza.

“Our total documents signed for the ten months to the end of October through all desks was in excess of 10,000.

“Park Beach Plaza, with a Monday and Thursday desk, accounts for about 75 percent,” said Mike.

To become a JP, most of the application requirements can be completed online.

“Essentially applicants need to be familiar with the JP Handbook, complete the knowledge test (20 questions) and then the appointment application.

“They then take the Oaths of Office and are ready to start,” said Mike.

The appointment is for five years.

“On our Community Desks we witness statutory declarations and affidavits, certify a copy of an original document; we also witness clients signing documents and other JP functions.”

Hot heads need not apply – this is a role for the calm and level headed.

“I believe some attributes that would help a JP are being patient and a good listener,” Mike said.

The role allows plenty of flexibility to fit your lifestyle.

“Being a voluntary position, you accept the shifts that suit your other activities,” he said.

“Two to four hours a week is about normal.”

Some volunteers commit to a time and day while others opt to be on call as required to fill a vacant shift.

“I enjoy meeting people of all ages and helping them with their current issues,” said Mike.

“This may be a divorce application, to all the signatures and declarations required when somebody passes.

“Plus we get the humorous ones, like for an insurance claim statutory declaration: ‘The cat has eaten my hearing aid’.”

Having been in Coffs Harbour for 45 years, Mike provided service to many people he’s known through business or Rotary over the years.

“Many people are surprised that a retired Ford Dealer would still be pushing the pen, but I do enjoy putting back into the community and that goes for all our JP volunteers,” he said.

All details about becoming a JP can be found at

The JP Coffs Harbour group has recently held its second AGM, thanking the Salvation Army for the use of their rooms.

Ms Soseh Cowham of the Salvation Army acted as an observer for the election of Office Bearers at the AGM.

The committee now consists of Terry Tweedie, President; Doug Wigg, Vice President; Jill Woodlock, Secretary; Terry Perry, Treasurer; Irene Wells, Desk Liaison; Mike Blewitt, Publicity Officer and Jill Woodlock, Membership.

Coffs Harbour JPs are listed on

Once in the directory you need to click on Local Advocacy Services.


Leave a Reply