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Lands and Titles Court

ACEO: Tuiloma Lopez Williams    Email: l.williams@mjca.gov.ws

1. Court of First Instance Section

This Section is headed by a Deputy Registrar/Principal Officer and is responsible for scheduling dates for court hearing in the Court of First Instance. Matters referred to the Court of First Instance are matters that were not resolved or settled through mediation.

Scheduling of cases before the Court of First Instance:

  • This Section receives the file from the Mediation Section of the petition lodged and outcome of mediation conducted;
  • In receipt of the file, a date of court hearing based on the existing work schedule and availability of dates will be scheduled.
  • The petition will be published for public notice in the Savali Newspaper to inform other heirs to the matter;
  • Upon publication, summons will be prepared and delivered to inform parties involved in the matter. (Note: copies of summons are signed by the recipient and are brought back as proof of service to the court therefore no excuse for non-appearance)
  • Court hearing commences.

2. Leave to Appeal & Court of Appeal Section

The Court of Appeal Section is headed by a Deputy Registrar or Principal Officer. This Section receives petitions of appeal against a decision by the Lands and Titles Court. Any matter from the Court of First Instance Appealed is heard before the Leave to Appeal Court to determine whether it shall proceed and be heard before the Court of Appeal.

Leave to Appeal process:

  1. It is important that if a party(ies) wishes to appeal a decision of the Court of First Instance, the petition must be lodged within 21 days from the date the decision was made (LTC Act Section 81 (a));
  2. However if litigant/petitioner cannot meet the 21 days to lodge petition, petitioner should write a letter to the President of the Lands and Titles Courts asking for an extension to submit petition on a later date. This letter should contain reasons why the petition couldn’t meet the time given of 21 days. According to the Lands and Titles Act Section 81 (b) the extension is no further than 2 months.
  3. When an appeal petition is lodged the following takes place:
  • Copies of Appeal applications will be distributed to parties involved;
  • Copies of summons and correspondences will be delivered to all parties. (Correspondences (fetusiaiga) include petition, affidavit (tala tete’e ma tali o tali tete’e) from both sides.
  • Court commences on the date scheduled in the Leave to Appeal Court.

d. When a petition has been decided to proceed to the Court of Appeal the following will take place.

Court of Appeal process:

  • The hearing date will be scheduled;
  • Summons will be prepared and delivered to all parties (note: copies of summons are signed by the recipient and are brought back as proof of service to the court);
  • Court hearing commences in the Court of Appeal.

3. Research and Report Writing Section

This Section is headed by a Deputy Registrar/Principal Officer. This Section provides internal administrative service to the President of the Lands and Titles Court and the Lands and Titles Court. Its main responsibility is to conduct research and prepare reports on Lands and Titles Court matters.

There are three (3) types of reports prepared:

1) Reports to assist the Lands and Titles Court: Court of First Instance and Court of Appeal;
2) Report for the President of the Lands and Titles Court and;
3) Report for the Registrar upon request.

About MJCA

Ministry of Justice, Courts and Administration

Mulinuu, Samoa

P.O. Box 49

info@mjca.gov.ws

Upolu Numbers:

  • phone : (685) 22671 - 74
  • Fax : (685) 21050

Savaii Numbers:

  • Phone : (685) 53514
  • Fax : (685) 53513
Please address all correspondences to the Chief Executive Officer / Registrar of the Courts.


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