Frequently Asked Questions

We're happy to answer your questions!

We encourage anyone who recognises that they need legal advice to see a lawyer. Law is complex and a lawyer has the education and  training to assist to resolve your legal issue. Articles in newspapers and magazines; comments from friends and family does not constitute legal advice. Although on occasion they can turn out to be on point, it is always advisable to seek legal consultation for your legal problem.

Divorces can take an average of six months to three years in Saint Lucia depending on the complexity and issues to be resolved. Further, it also depends on the availability of the parties to attend the court hearings and the court's diary. A lawyer cannot guarantee a client that the divorce will be completed in a particular period of time because of some of the variables mentioned.

The Claimant and the Defendant/ Respondent must attend court on each occasion unless the court has granted leave for the parties not to attend or there is a reasonable excuse for being absence from one court hearing such as illness or travel. However, if one of the parties to the case is absent from court repeatedly; they run the risk of the matter being dismissed (Claimant) or adjourned with costs awarded against them. In any event, your lawyer should be present to explain your absence.

Your lawyer, and the judge will guide you in terms of when you should sit or stand in court. Once you are addressing the judge, you are expected to stand unless told otherwise.

Your lawyer will direct you on the documents you will need to acquire to complete a deed of sale which includes compliance letters from the National Insurance Corporation and Inland Revenue, Your Identification Card ( e.g. Driver's licence, passport); map sheet and land register of the property being purchased.

Your lawyer will explain the court process and what to expect at your first hearing. It varies depending on the type of matter before the court. For example, in a divorce proceeding, in the first hearing the Petitioner (the individual who filed the divorce), your lawyer will ask you some questions under oath about your petition. It is usually a short hearing to determine whether the first stage of the divorce can be granted.

On average, an adoption takes about one year from the date of filing. Again this depends of the the court's diary and whether there were any issues arising at any stage of the adoption.

You should think of going to court as you would going to church. Wear a suit and if you do not have a suit, make sure you are not dressed for the beach. Long sleeved pants and long sleeved shirts, not short skirts, sleeveless tops or transparent clothing. You should dress modestly, no clevage or tight fitting clothes.

Please address the judge respectfully! This is very important. If you do not remember the following designations go with 'Sir' or 'Madam' . In the High Court, Criminal Assizes or before the Master of the High Court, it is 'Your Ladyship 'or 'Your Lordship' , in the Magistrates Court, ' Your Honour' .

A mediation session is scheduled for three hours. However, depending on the matter, it could last a shorter or longer period of time.

A mediation session is not held in a courtroom. A court appointed mediation is held in one of the mediation rooms located in the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court Building on the Waterfront. However, private mediations can be held at a comfortable and convenient location agreed on by the parties. This could be the mediator's office or another location.