An overview of the Jersey courts
Jersey has its own distinct and separate legal system which is separate from that of other jurisdictions.
Jersey’s litigation procedure is mainly embodied in the Royal Court Rules (the “Rules”). The Rules broadly reflect the English Supreme Court Practice as it was prior to the introduction of the Civil Procedure Rules in 1999.
The Civil Courts
The Royal Court and the Petty Debts Court are the courts of first instance for civil cases in Jersey.
The Petty Debts Court has jurisdiction to deal with both liquidated and unliquidated claims. The maximum that may be claimed before the Petty Debts Court is £30,000.
The Royal Court deals with all claims exceeding £30,000.
There are four divisions of the Royal Court:
- Samedi Division
- Family Division
- Probate Division
- Héritage Division
The Héritage Division deals with disputes concerning title to land.
The Family Division and Probate Division are self-explanatory courts.
All other matters fall to be dealt with by the Samedi Division of the Royal Court.
The Master of the Royal Court, who is a lawyer exercising a similar jurisdiction to that of a Master in the High Court of Justice in England and Wales, deals with minor interlocutory applications or procedural hearings. Appeal lies from a decision of the Master to the Royal Court.