World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

High Court of South Africa

Article Id: WHEBN0001413162
Reproduction Date:

Title: High Court of South Africa  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Courts of South Africa, Constitution of South Africa, Trial of Oscar Pistorius, Navi Pillay, Grahamstown
Collection: Courts of South Africa, High Court of South Africa
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

High Court of South Africa

This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
South Africa
Foreign relations
A crowd outside the Johannesburg High Court during the Jacob Zuma rape trial.

The High Court of South Africa is a superior court of law in South Africa. At present it is divided into seven provincial divisions, some of which sit in more than one location. Two further divisions are in the process of being established. Each High Court division has general jurisdiction over a defined geographical area in which it is situated, and the decisions of a division are binding on magistrates' courts within its area of jurisdiction. The High Court has jurisdiction over all matters, but it usually only hears civil matters involving more than 100,000 rand, and serious criminal cases. It also hears any appeals or reviews from magistrates' courts and other lower courts.

The court and its divisions are constituted in their current form by the Superior Courts Act, 2013, and replaced the previous separate High Courts, which in turn replaced the provincial and local divisions of the former Supreme Court of South Africa and the supreme courts of the TBVC states.

Important officers in a High Court division

Each division is headed by a Judge President. The registrar keeps all the official court documents. The family advocate must be consulted on all matters involving children, as the High Court is the "upper guardian" of all children in South Africa. The Master of the High Court keeps all the records relating to people's estates (deceased or insolvent). The Sheriff delivers certain documents to the parties in a civil case, and also attaches property when a warrant is issued. The Director of Public Prosecutions, who used to be called the Attorney-General, is responsible for criminal prosecutions by the state. The State Attorney is the lawyer who represents the state in civil actions (where the state is suing or being sued).


The Superior Courts Act, 2013, divides the High Court into nine divisions, one for each province. Some divisions have multiple seats of the court; the main seat has jurisdiction over the whole province, while the local seats have concurrent jurisdiction over some part of the province. The divisions are:

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.