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Legal Guidance

Legal Guidance is core to the decision making of the CPS and in making the guidance publicly available, we underline our commitment to open and transparent decision making. We will strive to keep apace of changes in the law and procedure and will regularly update our guidance.

We hope that you will find the guidance informative and a useful form of reference in what is a fast moving and dynamic environment.

You may use and re-use the information (not including logos) produced by the Crown Prosecution Service free of charge in any format or medium. For further information see our copyright page. Please note that our website also holds copies of publications issued by other agencies. You are advised to check the policies on reproducing those publications directly with the publishing agencies.

Many of the judgements referred to in our Legal Guidance are available in online databases run by commercial bodies or charitable organisations, for example: The British and Irish Legal Information Institute at

CPS Public Consultations

We want to hear your views about our prosecution policy and so we conduct consultations to help inform our policy making.

Please visit the consultations page to participate in our consultations and read our reports.

A to Z of contents

New and improved legal guidance

The newly refurbished Legal Guidance section has now been completed.

We hope you find the guidance informative and a useful form of reference in what is a fast moving and dynamic environment.

Latest updates include:

  • A full revision of Legal Guidance.
  • An A-Z search function ensuring the documents you require are stored in an easily navigable fashion.
  • An improved search facility allowing you to pinpoint legal guidance documents quickly and easily.
  • Details on CPS consultations.

How to use this Legal Guidance

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The easiest way to search is through our handy A-Z menu (on the left side of the page). Simply think of the title of the Guidance you need and click on the appropriate letter. See the user guide for more information.

Legal Guidance notifications

When we need to notify users of our Legal Guidance of major changes, or provide additional advice regarding any of the content of this section of the site, we will publish it here.