The Provincial Courts Act of 1940 is an act of the Grand Assembly of Washingtonia which established the two Provincial Courts for North Island and South Island respectively. The Provincial Courts were the first legislatively established courts in the Kingdom, the second and last of which was the Court of Appeal, by way of the Court of Appeal Act of 1956. These courts are distinguished with the constitutionally established courts, the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court.
Under Chapter 6, Section 3 of the Constitution, the Grand Assembly may create more courts or judicial entities which are independent of the executive, legislature and monarchical branches of government.
- Section 1: Definitions
- Section 2: Basic provisions
- A: There shall be a Provincial Court for each province of the Kingdom as established by the Grand Assembly.
- Section 3: Structure
- A: Each Provincial Court membership must consist of at least six (6) Provincial Judges.
- B: Each Provincial Court membership must in addition to the aforementioned Provincial Judges have an additional Chief Provincial Judge (CPJ) which shall lead that Court.
- Section 4: Jurisdiction
- A: The Provincial Courts shall act as a court of first instance in all cases concerning class D offenses and above.
- B: The Provincial Courts shall act as a court of first instance in all cases concerning a demanded compensation or restitution of more than fifty thousand Columbards (C50,000)
- Section 5: Presiding officer(s) and jury
- A: In criminal cases, if the accused has under Chap. 2 Sec. 4(d) of the Constitution elected to be tried by presiding officers, the Provincial Court bench shall consist of three Provincial Judges.
- B: If in the above circumstance the accused has elected to be tried by a jury of his peers, the Provincial Court bench shall consist of one Provincial Judge.
- C: In civil cases, the Provincial Court bench shall consist of one Provincial Judge.