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On Thursday, 1 July 2010, the new Commercial Court facilities were officially opened in Hamilton, Bermuda. While the Commercial Court has operated as a distinct entity within the Supreme Court of Bermuda since January 2006, before the opening of the new Commercial Court facilities, all commercial matters were dealt with in the existing Supreme Court rooms. The opening of the Commercial Court marks a specific location to deal with commercial matters in Bermuda.
The facilities which contain two court rooms, judges’ chambers and administrative offices are modern and well-equipped. Given the volume of commercial matters before the Courts, the sums of money often the subject matter of the dispute and the international consequences of the Court’s decisions, these facilities provide a professional and efficient environment in which these matters may be conducted.
The Commercial Court is located on the 2nd floor of the Government Administration Building on Parliament Street. The Court is staffed by two Judges: the Honourable Chief Justice Richard Ground and Mr Justice Ian Kawaley. Mr Justice Geoffrey Bell retired last year, but returns to the Court on an acting basis if needed.
Both the Attorney General Kim Wilson and Chief Justice Richard Ground were on hand for the opening of the facilities. As part of her opening comments Ms Wilson said, “The occasion of the official opening of the Commercial Courts represents a milestone in the modernization and development of the infrastructure that supports the proper and efficient administration of justice in Bermuda.”
Ms Wilson also remarked that Bermuda must continue to look to the future to expand its services to accommodate alternative forms of commercial dispute resolution. Chief Justice Richard Ground, as part of his opening remarks, said, “We now have a seat for the Commercial Court which matches the professionalism of the Judges who sit in it, and the importance of the cases they hear. It projects the right image for Bermuda. It is something that we can all be proud of.”
Conyers’ Litigation department advises on a broad range of corporate and commercial matters. With the growth of international business in the areas of insurance and reinsurance, banking and trusts, we have developed specialist knowledge in these areas and the expertise and advocacy required for highly complex legal disputes.
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Bermuda Opens New Commercial Court