High Court of Sri Lanka

Article 111 of the Constitution and section 4 of the Judicature Act, No. 2 of 1978 as amended by Act, No. 16 -1989 describes that The High Court must consist of not less than ten and not more than Forty Judges. Article 154P of the Constitution provides for the establishment of the Provincial High Courts to which Judges are appointed by the Chief Justice from among Judges of the High Court of Sri Lanka[1]

Coat of arms of Sri Lanka, showing a lion holding a sword in its right forepaw surrounded by a ring made from blue lotus petals which is placed on top of a grain vase sprouting rice grains to encircle it. A Dharmacakra is on the top while a sun and moon are at the bottom on each side of the vase.
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Appointment and removal of Judges

According to the Article 111 of the Constitution as amended by the 17th Amendment - Judges of the High Court are appointed by the President on the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission made after consultation with the Attorney General and removable by the President and are subject to disciplinary control by the President on the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission. Age of retirement of the Judges of the High Court is 61 years [Section 6(3) of the Judicature Act, No. 2 of 1978].[2]

Judicial powers

The High Courts exercise both the Criminal jurisdiction and the Commercial jurisdiction (through Commercial High Courts). It can conduct a trial by jury or trial at bar and impose any sentence or penalty prescribed by law. Under the 13th amendment to the constitution it has the appellate and re-visionary jurisdiction by way of the Provincial High Court.[3]
The Provincial High Court has been vested with appellate and re-visionary jurisdiction in respect of orders and judgments of the Magistrates Court, Primary Courts, Labour Tribunals, Agrarian Services Commissioners Tribunals within the province.[4]

The High Court of Civil Appeal

The High Court of Civil Appeal has been established with the objective of expediting the civil appeals in District Courts Appeals in District Courts are heard by the High Court of Civil Appeal.

High Court And The Provincial High Court

High Court cases can be heard in the presence of a Judge of the High Court or a Jury. The High Court take cognizance of cases to be heard on submission of indictments submitted by the Attorney General.

The Commercial High Court

The Commercial High Court was originally established under the High Court of the Provinces Act of 1996.[5] It has jurisdiction to hear civil actions where the cause of action has arisen out of commercial transactions in which the debt, damage or demand exceeds Three Million Sri Lankan Rupees (LKR).[6]

See also



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