report stated that the Court was a necessary institution
for Caribbean independence and the development of
an indigenous jurisprudence and it was against this
background that, at the Nineteenth Meeting of the
Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean
Community it was agreed that "A Caribbean Court
of Appeal should be established to replace the Judicial
Committee of the Privy Council as the final appellate
court for the Commonwealth Caribbean." A decision
later made resulted in the renaming of the institution
to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).
CCJ will be the final court of appeal from civil and
criminal decisions of the Courts of Appeal of those
Member States of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM)
which presently send appeals to the Judicial Committee
of the Privy Council. By bringing the Court to the
people, the CCJ will enhance access to justice in
terms of reducing distance and expense for populations
of the Caribbean Community and will have the challenge
of establishing respect as the binding authority of
its decisions, while assuring public support and confidence
in its administration of justice.
an Appeal Court, the CCJ is designed to give moral
leadership to our societies. As an international Court,
the CCJ will ensure that the regional international
movement develops along a structured, sustainable
and rule-based entity. More importantly, as the tribunal
responsible for interpreting and applying the Revised
Treaty of Chaguaramas establishing the Caribbean Community,
including the CARICOM Single
and Economy, the CCJ will be the guarantor of the
rights of national, accorded by the Revised Treaty.
Important rights in this context are the rights of
skilled professionals to practice their professionals
in any jurisdiction of the Community and for artisans
and other specified categories of skills to provide
services as independent contractors in any area of
the Caribbean Community.
Court will function in two jurisdictions - an original
jurisdiction and an appellate jurisdiction. The CCJ
in its appellate jurisdiction will apply the laws
of the Member States from which they are hearing appeals.
In the exercise of its original jurisdiction, the
CCJ will be performing the role of an international
Court, applying rules of international law in interpreting
and applying the revised Treaty of Chaguaramas.
terms of staffing, the Regional Judicial and Legal
Services Commission is established and has responsibility
for the appointment of Judges and other Court employees.
The Court will comprise a president who will be chairman
of the Commission and at least nine judges and will
also determine wages, salaries and conditions of work.
trust Fund has been set up to finance the Court and
is intended to insulate it from political interference
and will be managed by a board of trustees. The Agreement
Establishing the Fund has entered into force with
its signature by Members at the Twenty-Fourth Heads
of Government Conference held in Montego Bay, Jamaica.
seat of the Court is in Trinidad and Tobago but as
the circumstances warrant, the Court may sit in the
territory of any other Contracting Party.