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Patent under the Great Seal of this United Kingdom, to erect, constitute, and establish Two such Superior Courts of Judicature, having such exclusive Jurisdiction as herein-after mentioned, within His Majesty's Islands aforesaid in the West Indies; and which Charters or Letters Patent shall be promulgated in the several Islands aforesaid, by Proclamations to be therein respectively made in the Name and on the Behalf of His Majesty, by the respective Governors or Officers administering the Government thereof respectively.
II. And be it further enacted by the Authority aforesaid, That for the Purposes of this present Act His Majesty's said Islands or Governments of Barbadoes, Saint Vincent, Grenada, Tobago, Antigua, Montserrat, Saint Christopher, Nevis, Dominica, and the Virgin Islands shall be divided into Two separate and distinct Judicial Districts; one of which Districts shall comprise the said Islands of Barbadoes, Saint Vincent, Grenada, and Tobago, with their several Dependencies, and the other of which Districts shall comprise the said Islands of Antigua, Montserrat, Saint Christopher, Nevis, Dominica, and the Virgin Islands, with their several Dependencies.
III. And be it further enacted, That it shall be lawful for His Majesty, by such Charters and Letters Patent as aforesaid, to erect and establish within the said first-mentioned District One Superior Court of Judicature, which shall be styled "The Supreme Court of His Majesty's Windward Caribbee Islands," and to erect and establish within the said last-mentioned District One other Superior Court of Judicature, which shall be styled "The Supreme Court of His Majesty's Leeward Caribbee Islands."
IV. And be it further enacted, That each of the said Courts shall consist of and be holden in each of the said respective Islands or Governments by a Chief Justice and a Senior Puisne Justice, and by a resident Puisne Justice; which said Chief Justices and Senior Puisne Justices shall act in and for each and all of the Islands and Governments comprised in their respective Districts; but which said resident Puisne Justices shall severally act in and for the several and respective Islands or Governments within which they shall be respectively resident, and in no other Parts of the said respective Districts.
V. And be it further enacted, That the said Chief Justices and Senior Puisne Justices shall be respectively Barristers at Law in His Majesty's Courts of Chancery, King's Bench, Common Pleas, and Exchequer at Westminster or Dublin, or Advocates in the Court of Session in Scotland, and shall have been admitted as such, the said Chief Justices for Seven Years at the least and the said Senior Puisne Justices for Five Years at the least previously to such their Appointments; and that the said resident Puisne Justices shall at the Time of such their Appointments be either such English or Irish Barristers or such Advocates in Scotland as aforesaid of not less than Five Years standing, or shall at the Time of such their Appointments have been admitted for at least the Term of Five Years to practise at the Bar in some or one of His Majesty's Colonial Possessions, or shall have acted as Judges of some or one of the Supreme Courts of Judicature of some or one of such Colonial Possessions; and the said Justices of the said
Superior Courts in the West India Island".
The Islands to
His Majesty may erect a Superior Court in each of such Districts.
Of what Judges the Courts are to be composed.
Qualifications of the Judges.
Judges how ap. pointed, and
how to hold their Offices.
Provisional Appointment of Judges.
ThcJurisdiction of the Courts.
Courts to be holden Twice a Year.
Supreme Courts shall from Time to Time be appointed to such their Offices by His Majesty by Warrants under His Signet and Sign Manual, and shall hold such their Offices during His Majesty's Pleasure, and the ministerial and other Officers of the said Court respectively shall be appointed to and removed from their respective Offices in such Manner as His Majesty shall by such Charters or Letters Patent as aforesaid direct .
VI. Provided always, and be it further enacted, That in case of the Death or Resignation of any of the said Justices, or in case of any such Sickness or Infirmity as shall render any such Justice incapable of performing the Duties of his Office, or in case of the Absence of any such Justice from the District to which the Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to which he may belong shall extend, it shall be lawful for the Governor or the Officer administering the Government of Barbadoes within the District of the said Supreme Court of His Majesty's Windward Caribbee Islands, and for the Governor or the Officer administering the Government of Antigua within the District of the Supreme Court of His Majesty's Leeward Caribbee Islands, respectively to appoint some fit and proper Person to act in the Place and Stead of any Justice so dying, resigning, becoming incapable, or being absent, until a Successor shall be appointed by His Majesty, or until any such Justice shall return to the Execution of his Office; and in the meantime, until a Successor shall be so appointed, or until such Justice shall return as aforesaid, and shall enter upon or resume the Discharge of his Office in the said Courts respectively, the Person so to be appointed by such Governor or Officer administering the Government shall have and exercise all the Jurisdiction, Powers, and Authorities hereby or by the said Charters or Letters Patent granted to or vested in the Justices of the said Courts respectively.
VII. And be it further enacted, That the said Supreme Courts respectively shall be Courts of Record, and shall within the said Islands or Governments comprised within their Jurisdiction respectively, and within all and every the Islands and Territories which now are or hereafter may be dependent upon the respective Governments thereof, have cognizance of all Pleas, Civil or Criminal, and Jurisdiction in all Cases whatsoever, as fully and amply to all Intents and Purposes as His Majesty's Courts of King's Bench, Common Pleas, and Exchequer at Westminster, or either of them, lawfully have or exercise, and the said Courts respectively shall also at all Times be Courts of Oyer and Terminer and General Gaol Delivery in and for the said Islands and Territories and the Dependencies thereof respectively; and the said Justices so to be appointed shall have and exercise such and the same Jurisdiction and Authority in the said Islands and Territories and the Dependencies thereof respectively as the Judges of the Courts of King's Bench, Common Pleas, and Exchequer in England, or any of them, lawfully have and exercise, and as shall be necessary for carrying into effect the several Jurisdictions, Powers, and Authorities committed to the said Courts respectively.
VIII. And be it further enacted, That the said Supreme Court of His Majesty's Windward Caribbee Islands shall be holden Twice at the least in each Year in the Islands of Barbadoes, Saint Vincent, Grenada, and Tobago respectively; and that the said Supreme Court of His Majesty's Leeward Caribbee Islands shall be holden Twice at the least in each Year in the Islands of Antigua, Montserrat, Saint Christopher s, Nevis, Dominica, and Tortola respectively.
IX. And be it further enacted, That for the Exercise of the Tw0 TeTMs '° legal Jurisdiction vested in the said Supreme Courts Two Terms . ea"°ua yf at the least thereof respectively shall be holden in each Year within
each of the several Islands aforesaid, and that in all Sittings of the said Supreme Courts in Banco the Judgments, Orders, and Acts of the Majority of the said Justices shall be deemed and taken to be the Judgments, Orders, and Acts of the said Supreme Courts, and shall have Force and Validity and be executed accordingly.
X. And be it further enacted, That in anv Actions at Law to Actions to be be brought in the said Supreme Court of His Majesty's Windward tried by a single Caribbee Islands and of His Majesty's Leeward Caribbee Islands -Judgefwltha
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respectively, when the Parties, Plaintiff and Defendant, in any such jjgi
XI. And be it further enacted, That in each of the Islands or Resident Puisne Governments aforesaid the resident Puisne Justice of the said Judge may do Supreme Courts shall, within the Islands or Governments respec- "J1 Actf *nicn a tively in which they shall be so resident, and the Dependencies slng d " ^ thereof, have and exercise all such Powers, Authorities, and Juris- England, diction as by the Law of England are or is vested in or can
be exercised by any single Justice of His Majesty's Courts of King's Bench or Common Pleas at Westminster, or by any single Baron of His Majesty's Court of Exchequer, sitting apart from the other Judges of the same Courts, and more especially all Powers, Authorities, and Jurisdiction which may be exercised by any One of the Judges of the Court of King's Bench at Westminster for taking and justifying Special Bail in Causes depending in the same Court; and it shall and may be lawful for such resident Puisne Justice in the Interval between any Two successive Terms of the said Supreme Courts to hold One or more Special Sittings thereof for the Purpose of entering Actions, or of confessing Judgments, or of making any such Rules or Orders of Court as may be necessary for making up the Records of the said Court, until Issue shall be thereupon joined upon any Matter of Law or of Fact, which Issues shall nevertheless be adjudged or tried during such Terms as aforesaid, and not at any other Time; and all Rules, Orders, and Judgments so to be made or entered up at any such Special Sitting as aforesaid shall be taken to be as of the Term immediately preceding or of the Term immediately succeeding the Date thereof, as such resident Puisne Justice shall in tach Case direct.
Appeal to the
Jurisdiction in Cases of Offences committed on the
Courts to have an Equitable Jurisdiction.
Chief Justice empowered to hear Equity Causes; and, in his Absence, the Puisne Justice.
Equitable Jurisdiction of the resident Judge during the Nonsession of the Court.
XII. And be it farther enacted, That for reversing any Judgment of the said Supreme Courts, or either of them, for any-Error of Law, it shall be lawful for the Parties, either Plaintiff or Defendant, to appeal to His Majesty in Council upon and subject to such Terms and Conditions as His Majesty by such Charters or Letters Patent as aforesaid shall be pleased to direct.
XIII. And be it further enacted, That the said Supreme Courts of His Majesty's Windward Caribbee Islands and of His Majesty's Leeward Caribbee Islands respectively shall and may inquire of, hear, and determine all Treasons, Piracies, Robberies, Murders, Conspiracies, and other Offences, of what Nature or Kind soever, committed or that shall be committed upon the Sea, or any Haven, River, Creek, or Place where the Admiral or Admirals have Authority, Power, or Jurisdiction, according to the common Course of the Laws of the Realm of England, and used for Offences committed upon the Land within the Realm of England, and not otherwise; and that all Persons convicted of the Offences so to be inquired of, heard, and determined in the said Courts respectively shall be subject and liable to and shall suffer all such and the same Pains, Penalties, and Forfeitures as by any Law or Laws now in force Persons convicted of the same respectively would be subject and liable to in case the same were respectively inquired of, tried, heard, determined, and adjudged in England; any Law, Statute, or Usage to the contrary notwithstanding.
XIV. Ahd be it further enacted, That the said Supreme Courtsrespectively shall be Courts of Equity within the Limits of the Jurisdiction thereof, and shall have Power and Authority to administer Justice, and to do, exercise, and perform all such Acts, Matters, and Things necessary for the due Execution of such Equitable Jurisdiction as the Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain can or lawfully may do, exercise, or perform within the Realm of England.
XV. Provided nevertheless, and it is hereby further enacted, That the Chief Justice for the Time being of each of the said Supreme Courts respectively shall have Power to hear and determine all Causes, Matters, and Things which shall be at any Time depending in the said Courts respectively as Courts of Equity; and that if any such Chief Justice shall, by Sickness or other unavoidable Cause, be prevented from sitting for the Purposes aforesaid, then it shall and may be lawful for the Puisne Justice or the resident Puisne Justice of such Courts respectively to hear and determine such Causes, Matters, and Things; and that the Decrees, Orders, and Acts of the said Chief Justice, or in case of his being prevented as aforesaid, then of such Puisne Justice or resident Puisne Justice as aforesaid, shall be deemed and taken to be respectively the Decrees, Orders, and Acts of the said Supreme Court in such their Equitable Jurisdiction, and shall have Force and Validity to be executed accordingly.
XVI. And be it further enacted, That during the Non-session of the said Supreme Courts respectively in any of the Islands or Governments aforesaid it shall be lawful for the resident Puisne Justice for such Island or Government to hear and determine alt Applications which shall be made to the said Supreme Courts
respectively respectively as Courts of Equity for any Decree to which all the Parties, Plaintiff and Defendant, shall be consenting, or for any Interlocutory Order in any Cause there depending, which Orders shall nevertheless be subject to the Review of the full Court in such Manner, and upon, under, and subject to such Conditions, as His Majesty by such Letters Patent or Charters as aforesaid shall direct and appoint.
XVII. And be it further enacted, That the said Supreme Courts Courts to have respectively shall have Power to grant Probates under the Seal of Ecclesiastical the said Courts of the last Wills and Testaments of all or any JunsdicttonInhabitants of the said Islands or Governments respectively, and
of all other Persons who shall die and leave personal Effects within the same, and shall also have Power to grant Letters of Administration of the Goods, Chattels, Credits, and all other Effects whatsoever of the Persons aforesaid who shall die intestate, or who shall not have named an Executor resident within such Islands or Governments respectively, or where the Executor, being duly cited, shall not appear and sue forth such Probate, annexing the said Will to Letters of Administration when any such Persons shall have left a Will without naming any Executor who shall be then alive and resident within the Islands or Governments aforesaid, and who, being cited thereunto, shall not appear and sue forth a Probate thereof, and to sequester the Goods and Chattels, Credits and other Effects whatsoever of such Persons so dying, in Cases allowed by Law, as the same is and may now be used in the Diocese of London, and to demand, require, take, hear, examine, and allow, and, if Occasion require, to disallow or reject, the Accounts of such Executors or Administrators, in such Manner and Form as may be used in the said Diocese of London, and to do all other Things whatsoever necessary in that Behalf: Provided always, that in the Interval between any Two successive Terms of the said Supreme Courts it shall be lawful for such resident Puisne Justices as aforesaid in the Islands in which they shall be so respectively resident to do all and every the judicial Acts, and to exercise the Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction aforesaid, in all Cases in which there shall be no Caveat entered or Opposition made.
XVIII. And be it further enacted, That it shall be lawful for Appeal to King either of the Parties, Plaintiff or Defendant, to appeal to His in Council reMajesty in Council against any Decree, Order, or Sentence made SyCt"lgj?'j"i|" or pronounced by either of the said Supreme Courts in the ^.^^ jurisExercise of such Equitable or Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction as afore- diction.
said, in such Manner and upon and subject to such Terms and Conditions as His Majesty by such Charters or Letters Patent as aforesaid shall please to direct.
XIX. And be it further enacted, That nothing herein contained Courts of Quarshall extend or be construed to extend to take away or abridge ter Sessions to any Jurisdiction, Powers, or Authorities which now is or are vested
m any Courts of General Quarter Sessions holden in and for the several Islands and Governments aforesaid, and their Dependencies, or to prevent the Erection by Law in any of the said Islands and Governments of Courts of General Quarter Sessions with Power and Authority to take cognizance of all Matters and Things cognizable in all Courts of Quarter Sessions of the Peace m England, as far as the Circumstances and Condition of the