en English
Mrs. Janine Harris-Lake

Registrar of the High Court

High Court

Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs

The functioning of the High Court is part and parcel of the jurisdiction of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) and is governed by the provisions of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (Saint Christopher and Nevis) Act Cap 3.11. The functions of the High Court are executed in conjunction with local government ministries in each respective territory of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS).  The judicial aspects of the court’s work are directly administered by the ECSC. Meanwhile, the administrative and registry services are carried out by our locally appointed staff under the leadership of a Registrar.

In the case of St. Kitts and Nevis, these operations fall within the purview of the Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs. Together, we provide the necessary administrative and legal support for the functioning of the High Court and the Appeal Court when it sits in the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis.

Our staff complement includes:

  • The Registrar
  • Assistant Registrar
  • Court Administrator
  • Executive Officer
  • Court Stenographers
  • Senior Bailiff
  • Senior Clerks
  • IT Clerk
  • Secretary
  • Bailiffs
  • Clerks

On St. Kitts our operations are housed at The Sir Lee Lewellyn Moore Judicial Complex in Basseterre while The Theodore L. Hobson Q.C. Building on Nevis houses our operations on that island.  

What We Do

  1. Court Administration
  2. Registry Services (Civil and Criminal Legal Actions, Probate, Bills of Sale, Other Legal Documents)
  3. Mediation Services

In greater detail, the functions performed by the Registry include the following: 

  • Maintains records of filings 
  • Registers Probates, 
  • Registers Bills of Sale
  • Registers Criminal and Civil Suits
  • Registers Deed Polls, Marriages, Divorces, Births and Deaths,
  • Make arrangements and sets the calendar regarding the dates and times of the hearing of applications and appeals
  • Determines the dates and times of scheduled sittings of the Court
  • Manages and monitors the process of moving cases through the court system
  • Prepares and executes service of directions and certificates of result to interested parties
  • Directly notifies parties and their legal representatives regarding the dates of hearing of appeals and applications; dates of case management conferences and dates of delivery of judgments
  • Distributes judgments directly to the relevant parties
  • Serves as liaison between Parties and the Court
  • Provides information on the status and disposition of matters
  • Maintains a computerized case management system
  • Prepares digests of sittings 
  • Provides research assistance to the Judges

Please note that the Registry cannot engage in:

  • Providing legal advice to anyone
  • Recommending any particular lawyer to act on your behalf
  • Telling you whether or not your matter will succeed
  • Changing an order once it has been made by the Court
  • Allowing you to speak or otherwise communicate with a judge, except at a hearing, regarding your matter
  • Telling you what the decision of the Court will be, or give you an opinion of what it might be.

 

Recent High Court Judgments in St. Kitts and Nevis

https://www.eccourts.org/category/saint-kitts-and-nevis/

How We Are Financed

The operations of the court administration and the registry services are financed by budgetary allocations via The Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs as outlined in the Annual Estimates and Budget of the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis.

How We Serve the Public

We facilitate:

  • Filing of cases
  • Filing of legal documents of all types
  • Filing of documents relating to civil and criminal matters to be handled by the court

Our court hearings may be carried out:

  • in Open Court; or
  • in Chambers

The administrative operations cater to processing of all matters for consideration by the Court

Individual parties (and their counsel where necessary) are given adequate notice regarding the hearing of their particular matters.

The public is informed regarding the dates and times when the court sits. This is done by the timely publication/circulation of Court Lists

https://www.eccourts.org/category/sittings/high-court-sittings/  

 

Our New Thrust In Mediation

With the training of an expanded group of mediators in March 2019 and the establishment of the National Mediation Committee in November of 2019, we are now in a position to offer mediation services to litigants in civil matters. This will provide the opportunity to avoid the cost and time constraints of the regular trial process in the case of a number of civil litigation scenarios. Upon completion of construction in 2020, the annex to the Judicial Complex will house specially designated mediation facilities.

For more information on mediation, See:

https://www.eccourts.org/mediation/

Examples of disputes that can be dealt with through mediation: 

  1. Land Matters
  2. Family Matters
  3. Rental Property Matters
  4. Commercial Contract Matters 
  5. Matters Pertaining to Wills and Estates 
  6. Employment Related Matters
  7. Debt Collection Matters
  8. Personal Injury Matters

Who We Mostly Interact With 

A variety of persons interact with the court as:

  • Plaintiffs
  • Complainants
  • The Director of Public Prosecutions
  • Lawyers/Attorneys
  • Defendants
  • Persons Appealing Conviction, etc

How You May Interact With Us

For normal registry services you may visit our public reception area on the ground floor of the Sir Lee Llewellyn Moore Judicial Complex in Basseterre on St. Kitts and the Theodore L. Hobson Q.C. Building in Charlestown on Nevis

E-Litigation

The recently established E-Litigation portal of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court provides easy access to the various services related to litigation matters. The official launch in St. Kitts and Nevis took place on 18th November 2019.

See Related Links Below

https://www.eccourts.org/category/e-litigation-publications/

https://www.eccourts.org/ecsc-e-litigation-portal-user-information/

https://www.eccourts.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/ECSC-E-Litigation-Portal-User-Guide-for-Legal-Practitioners.pdf

https://www.eccourts.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Guidelines-to-Legal-Practitioners-for-Filing-via-ECSC-ELP-Version-3.1-December-4-2019.pdf

https://www.eccourts.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/SLU-ECSC-ELP-Terms-and-Conditions-of-Use-ECSC-ELP-Version-1.0.pdf

Fees

Filing of court related documents at the Registry is accompanied by the payment of fees. See fees below:

Civil Procedure Rules

https://www.eccourts.org/wp-content/uploads/court_docs/CPR_2000_Revised_Edition_Nov_2015.pdf

Criminal Procedure Rules

See Criminal Procedure Act

Forms In Use

The Website of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court https://www.eccourts.org/  carries samples of forms at: https://www.eccourts.org/court-forms/

 ECSC NEWS

https://www.eccourts.org/ecsc-launches-court-connected-mediation-public-awareness-campaign-in-st-kitts-and-the-nevis/

It is the principal mission of the Office of the Attorney General to provide legal advice and services to and on behalf of The Crown, and to conduct and respond to all matters of litigation for and against The Crown or any Ministry or Agency of the Government.

Importantly, its mandate includes the extensive oversight of the legislative agenda of the Government.

The Office of the Attorney General also provides administrative support for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and superintends all matters relating to the Electoral Office.

Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs

The Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs ensures that the rule of law is facilitated and supported by the various mechanisms by which citizens can have equal access to the justice system and by which they can be afforded the protection of the law. It also takes responsibility for ensuring that the statutes are updated and modernized to keep pace with an evolving society.

Quick and convenient access to important and noteworthy matters relevant to entities under the Office of the Attorney General and departments within the Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs.

Hon. Mr. Vincent Byron
Attorney General

Ms. Diana Francis
Permanent Secretary

(Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs)

The Office of the Attorney General

The Office of the Attorney General is chiefly responsible for providing legal counsel and advice to the Executive Branch of the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis. The functioning of the Office is rooted in the Constitution and is further detailed by the provisions of the Attorney General’s Act Cap 3.02 of the laws of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis.

One of the more prolific manifestations of the advisory functions of the Office of the Attorney General is its contribution to the legislative agenda of the government. As such, the responsibility of preparation of all legislation: from conceptualization to the presentation of Bills and the crafting of Regulations falls within the purview of the office.

Get In Touch

Government Headquarters,
Church Street, Basseterre, St. Kitts

+1(869) 467-1013

attorneygeneral@gov.kn