News

Practice Directions [Resumption of the Operations of the Industrial Court of Trinidad and Tobago]

The Industrial Court of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago remains committed to providing access to justice for all citizens, while at the same token ensuring the safety and the protection of all the users of the Court. The Industrial Court in response to the global pandemic known as COVID-19 has put measures in place to protect and to safeguard its staff, stakeholders and the public against exposure to the virus.

 

WHEREAS the Industrial Court reiterates its commitment to the health and safety of all the users of the Court and remains committed to providing a secure and safe environment. The Industrial Court has implemented social distancing guidelines in keeping with the directives issued by the Ministry of Health titled “Guidelines for Businesses/Facilities/Institutions Reopening after lifting of Restriction Post COVID 19”.

 

The following are the directives for social distancing which must be adhered to by all the users of the Court:-

  1. On entry to the Port of Spain and San Fernando Industrial Court buildings, all persons must wear a face mask. Persons without face masks will be denied entry to the buildings. Please note that face masks must be worn at all times
  2. Each person who enters the Industrial Court will be subjected to a body temperature test. The Industrial Court reserves the right to deny persons entry to the Court.
  3. On entry to the Court persons are required to use hand sanitizers which will be provided. Persons may be further required to utilize hand sanitizer stations which are situated throughout various parts of the buildings.
  4. Social distancing guidelines are in effect. Users of the Court will be informed of these protocols upon entry by the staff.
  5. A maximum number of three (3) persons at a time will be allowed in the elevators.
  6. The Drop Boxes which came into effect by “Practice Direction Covid-19 Emergency Directions” must be used by all litigants to submit Evidence and Arguments, Witness Statements, Correspondence and other documents. NO FILING WILL BE ALLOWED AT THE REGISTRIES’ COUNTERS. The staff of the Court will process all documents and parties are required to return for stamped copies one (1) hour after the time of the initial deposit in the said drop box.
  7. Attendees to Court Hearings are limited to those directly involved in proceedings namely the Witnesses, Attorneys and Industrial Relations Practitioners. Please note that persons who are not directly involved in matters before the Court will not be permitted to enter and to sit in the Courtrooms.
  8. Witnesses are to remain seated in the Witness Rooms until they are requested to give evidence in Court.
  9. The Industrial Court continues to provide an environment which is safe by ensuring that:-
  • All door knobs, door handles and the elevators are cleaned and sanitized regularly throughout the day. 
  • All counters, chairs, tables, court rooms, witness rooms, case management rooms, conciliation rooms and washrooms will be frequently sanitized and cleaned daily. 
  • The Court security will be stationed at the entrances and exits of the North and South Industrial Courts and will open and close all doors. This will ensure that the staff and the public do not make contact with the door knobs or door handles in an effort to protect and safeguard them against the potential exposure to the novel coronavirus.

 

COURT SITTINGS

WHEREAS pursuant to the provisions of Section 7(4) of the Industrial Relations Act Chap. 88:01, the President can fix hearings at such places as may be deemed necessary to despatch the business of the Court.

The following directives have been instituted:-

  1. Court shall begin at 9 am daily.
  2. Case Management Conferences, Mention and Reports and Directions, only, will now be available remotely to parties by use of the software Zoom and Microsoft Team. Parties who wish to avail themselves of this facility can do so by contacting the Court’s Registry for Guidelines and Protocols. Parties who do not wish to have Case Management Conferences, Mention and Reports and Directions remotely will continue to appear in person at the Court.
  3. The Court shall hold sessions in the month of August 2020, namely, from 3rd August, 2020 to 27th August, 2020 inclusive.
  4. The Court’s vacation shall commence from 28th of August, 2020 to 15th September, 2020.
  5. The Law term reopens on 16th September, 2020 and the Special Sitting of the Industrial Court will be held on 17th September, 2020.

 

Telephone Numbers :- 1-868-225-4288 ext. 2201-9/2213/2310 (North) or ext. 1103-5 (South)
Email :-                         This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Website :-                     www.industrialcourt.org.tt

 

Dated this 5th day of June, 2020

 

 

/s/ Her Honour Mrs. Deborah Thomas-Felix

President