The Registration Department carries primarily responsibility for
The Court of Appeal
The Court of Appeal was constituted in November 1992. It exercises
both criminal and civil jurisdiction, and hears appeals from the
decisions of the High Court and the Magistrates' Courts. Matters are
heard by a 'Full Court' comprising three (3) Justices of Appeal, or
by a single Justice of Appeal sitting in Chambers.
The High Court
The High Court is divided into three divisions, each exercising
separate jurisdiction. A Judge of the High Court may sit in any
division. The divisions are:
1. Civil Division
2. Criminal Division
3. Family Division
Matters in the Civil and Family Divisions are heard before a
Judge sitting alone and in the Criminal Division (Criminal Assizes),
matters are tried by a Judge and Jury. Matters are sent to the
Criminal Assizes after an accused has been examined by a Magistrate
and committed for trial.
The Magistrates' Courts
The Magistrates Courts are courts of summary jurisdiction. It
jurisdiction in Criminal, Civil, Domestic, Domestic Violence and
Juvenile matters in accordance with the Magistrates Court Act
Cap.116A of the laws of Barbados. The Magistracy also has
jurisdiction to hear matters relating to Coroners Inquests, Liquor
Licences and performs civil marriages.
The jurisdiction of the Magistracy is limited both geographically
and according to the value of the subject matter of the dispute.
However, by virtue of section 45 of
subsection (2) of the Severance Payments Act, the Magistracy has
unlimited original jurisdiction in civil wrongful dismissal actions.
In its civil division it can hear and determine any action founded
in Contract or Tort where the debt, demand or claim does nor exceed
ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00).
The Court Process office
The Court Process Office was established in to carry service
documents required by any court or by any law for the time being in
force to be performed and seize goods for sale in satisfaction of a
The Records Branch administers the registration of events such as
births, still-births, deaths, marriages and is responsible for the
administering statutes relating to the registration of
professionals. It also makes available to customers public records
about individuals and issues birth, death, marriage certificates.
The Records branch has a statutory duty to report each year on
vital statistics and registrations. This Annual Reportis then laid
before Parliament by the Attorney General. It contains an overview
of civil registrations in Barbados, based on demographic data
collated for the previous calendar year. The annual report is
supplemented by a set of Tables that include detailed information on
births, deaths, marriages, divorces, and population estimates for
the same period.