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 Court of Appeal Session

 Draft 4 - MARCH 2014

Welcome from the Chief Justice of Bermuda, the Hon. Ian R.C. Kawaley

Welcome to the Portal pages of the Bermuda Judiciary.

The Judicial Oath requires all judicial officers to “do right to all manner of people after the laws and usages of Bermuda without fear or favour, affection or ill will.” The primary function of the courts is shaped and informed by this fundamental judicial commitment.

All court users are entitled to expect and to enjoy the same fair hearing rights, in conformity with this fundamental principle of equality before the law.

The courts of Bermuda are committed to dealing with all cases quickly and fairly. Waiting times are short. On the criminal side Supreme Court trials can expect to be tried within three months of arraignment. On the civil side, the courts always have time to take urgent matters immediately, and to set longer matters down at a time convenient to the parties. 

Although much of our law and practice derives from England, Bermuda has, throughout its history, crafted models derived from England & Wales and other common law jurisdictions to fit its special circumstances. In particular our approach to civil procedure reflects the realities of a small jurisdiction, giving judicial officers the case management tools they need without blindly adopting procedures more suited to a larger jurisdiction.  

On the portal pages of the Bermuda Judiciary you will find a general Introduction to our Court System, as well as more detailed information for members of the public and lawyers alike.

 Mission & Mandate  

  • The Judiciary is established by the Constitution as a separate and independent branch of government.
  • Its task is to adjudicate charges of criminal conduct, resolve disputes, uphold the rights and freedoms of the individual and preserve the rule of law.
  • Its mission is to carry out its task fairly, justly and expeditiously, and to abide by the requirement of the judicial oath “to do right by all manner of people, without fear or favour, affection or ill-will.”
  • The mission of the administrative section of the Judiciary is to provide the services and support necessary to enable the Judiciary to achieve its mission and to embody and reflect the spirit of the judicial oath when interacting with members of the public who come into contact with the courts.