1   Short title

   2   Interpretation

   3   Application of existing Acts


Constitution, Judges, Officers, their Salaries, the Seal
and Offices of the Supreme Court

   4   Consolidation of the Superior Courts

   5   Constitution of the Supreme Court

   6   Judges of the Court; their qualification appointment and status

   7   Vacancies

      Illness or absence of Judges

   8   Master of the Court

   9   Powers of a Master

   10   Appeals from a Master

   11   Officers of the Court

      Their appointment

   12   The Registrar, his qualifications, remuneration and duties and Circuit Court Clerks duties

   13   Registrar may make orders

   14   Procedure where cases are not concluded by Master or Registrar

   15   Appointment, qualification and duties of Deputy Registrars

   16   Appointment and duties of shorthand writers

   17   Bailiffs' additional duties

   18   Power to appoint a Bailiff to execute the process of the Supreme Court in its Admiralty Jurisdiction

   19   When Bailiff of Resident Magistrate's Court deemed Officer of Supreme Court

   20   Salaries of officers

   21   Employment of experts by the Court

   22   Who may administer oaths, etc

   23   Summary jurisdiction of the Court over its officers

   24   Transfer of books and property of existing Courts to the Supreme Court

   25   The Seal

   26   Officers of the Court


Jurisdiction of Supreme Court of Judicature

   27   Jurisdiction of the Court

   28   How Jurisdiction to be exercised

      Power of Court to make order for sale of land

   28B   Conduct of sales of land tinder order

   28C   Certificates of purchase and effect thereof

   28D   Power of Court to make charging orders

   28E   Costs in civil proceedings in Court

   28F   Power of Court to order interim payments

   29   Jurisdiction of Circuit Court Judges


Sittings and Distribution of Business

   30   Where Court to be held ordinarily and specifically

   31   Orders for the holding of Circuit Courts

   32   Arrangement and vacations of Circuit Courts

   33   The extent of the local jurisdiction of each Circuit Court

   34   Change of venue in criminal cases

   35   Transfer of trial from one parish to another

   36   Provisions as to commitments and recognizances when change made in arrangements for holding Circuit Courts

   37   Sittings of the Supreme Court and vacation business

   38   Venue of civil suits and proceedings

   39   Powers of a single Judge

   40   A Judge on Circuit or sitting as an Election Court constitutes a Court

   41   Reservation of a case or point of law for argument before the Court of Appeal

   42   Matters to be heard before the Court of Appeal

   43   References by the Court to the Registrar

   44   Evidence


Trial by Jury in Civil Proceedings

   45   Trial with Jury

   46   Trial without Jury



   47   Costs


Provisions regulating the administration of Law
and Equity by the Supreme Court

   48   Provisions as to the concurrent administration of law and equity

   49   Provisions as to the administration of law in special cases


Sale of Lands under Decree

   50   Sale of lands under decree


Interest on Judgments in Supreme Court

   51   Interest on Judgment debt, and rate of

      Definition of "judgment"


Abolition of Prerogative Writs of Mandamus, Prohibition and Certiorari

   52   Orders of mandamus, prohibition and certiorari to be substituted for prerogative writs of mandamus. prohibition and certiorari


Council of Judges

   53   Council of Judges to be held annually

      Its functions.



   54   Payment of salaries and expenses

   55   Fees payable in stamps



[Date of Commencement: 1st January, 1880]

Cap 180.

46 of 1955,
39 of 1956,
56 of 1959,
10 of 1960,
15 of 1962.

50 of 1963,
1 of 1966,
29 of 1966,
43 of 1968,
49 of 1968,
42 of 1969,
32 of 1970,
14 of 1971,
15 of 1971,
25 of 1971,
29 of 1971,
30 of 1973,
42 of 1973,
2 of 1976,
29 of 1997,
4 of 1999,
38 of 1999,
3 of 2003,
14 of 2008,
8 of 2012.

Preliminary (sections 1-3)

1   Short title

   This Act may be cited as the Judicature (Supreme Court) Act.

2   Interpretation

   In this Act-

   "cause" includes any suit or other original proceeding, between a plaintiff and a defendant, and any criminal proceeding by the Crown;

   "defendant" includes every person served with any writ of summons or process, or served with notice of or entitled to attend any proceedings;

   "judgment" includes decree;

   "land" includes all corporeal or incorporeal hereditaments, or any legal or equitable estate therein;

[3/2003 s 2.]

   "matter" includes every proceeding in the Court not a cause;

   "officers" includes clerks;

   "party" includes every person served with notice of or attending any proceeding, although not named on the record;

   "plaintiff" includes every person asking any relief (otherwise than by way of counter-claim as a defendant) against any other person by any form of proceeding, whether the same be taken by cause, suit, petition, motion, summons or otherwise;

   "rules of Court" includes forms;

   "suit" includes action.

   "the Registrar" means a person appointed as a Registrar pursuant to section 11.

[4/1999 s 2.]

3   Application of existing enactments

   (1) Subject to subsection (2) all enactments relating to the Courts and Judges and officers whose jurisdictions and functions are hereby transferred to the Supreme Court, or to any of the Judges or officers thereof or wherein any of the Courts or Judges or officers are referred to, shall be construed, so far as relates to anything done after the commencement of this Act, as if the Supreme Court established by this Act, and the Judges and officers thereof, as the case may be, had been named therein instead of such Courts or Judges or officers.

[15/1962 s 35.]

   (2) After the 30th July, 1962-

[15/1962 s 35.]

   (a)   all references in this or any other enactment to the High Court shall as respects enactments in force immediately prior to that date be construed as references to the Supreme Court; and

   (b)   where in this or any other enactment reference is made to the Supreme Court in the exercise of its jurisdiction, such reference shall not include those powers exercised by the Supreme Court prior to the date aforesaid and thereafter reserved to the Court of Appeal or to any of the Judges of that Court.

Constitution, Judges, Officers, their Salaries, the Seal and Offices of the Supreme Court (sections 4-26)

4   Consolidation of the Superior Courts

   On the commencement of this Act, the several Courts of this Island hereinafter mentioned, that is to say-

   The Supreme Court of Judicature,

   The High Court of Chancery,

   The Incumbered Estates' Court,

   The Court of Ordinary,

   The Court for Divorce and Matrimonial Causes,

   The Chief Court of Bankruptcy, and

   The Circuit Courts,

shall be consolidated together, and shall constitute one Supreme Court of Judicature in Jamaica, under the name of "the Supreme Court of Judicature of Jamaica" hereinafter called "the Supreme Court".

5   Constitution of the Supreme Court

   (1) The Judges of the Supreme Court shall be the Chief Justice, a Senior Puisne Judge and not less than twenty-four nor more than forty other Puisne Judges.

[50/1963 s 2(a) and (b); 2/1976 s 2(a) and (b); 38/1999 s 2; 14/2008 s 2(a).]

   (2) The Chief Justice shall be the President; and the Chief Judge of the Supreme Court, and shall be styled "The Chief Justice of Jamaica".

   (3) The Puisne Judges shall be styled "Puisne Judges of the Supreme Court of Judicature of Jamaica".

   (4) The Minister may by order published in the Gazette amend subsection (1) so as to increase the number of Puisne Judges, which order shall be subject to affirmative resolution.

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