Since March 2020, the Courts of the Northwest Territories have issued Directives in response to the COVID 19 pandemic. These Directives were adjusted over time, to reflect the evolution of the public health situation. All the measures that had been put in place have been lifted and all court operations have returned to normal until further notice.

Supreme Court

The Supreme Court is the superior court of record in the Northwest Territories. Its judges are appointed by the federal government.

The Supreme Court is based in Yellowknife and also sits in other communities throughout the Northwest Territories as the need arises. It sits with and without a jury. It also exercises powers of judicial review over decisions of Territorial boards and tribunals.

The Supreme Court hears appeals in summary conviction criminal matters heard by the Territorial Court and the Justice of the Peace Court, as well as other appeals as provided for by statute. This Court also has jurisdiction over divorce, probate and estate administration.

Appeals from decisions of the Supreme Court are heard by the Court of Appeal for the Northwest Territories.

Rules of the Supreme Court can be found here.

The schedule of the Supreme Court can be found here.

Supreme Court Justices

  • The Honourable Justice S. H. Smallwood, Chief Justice
  • The Honourable Justice K.M. Shaner
  • The Honourable Justice A.M. Mahar

The list of matters set before the Courts of the Northwest Territories by location and date.