About the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court, established pursuant to Article 34 of the Constitution of Ireland, is the court of final appeal.

 

Appellate jurisdiction

 

Significant changes have been made to the Supreme Court's appellate jurisdiction with the coming into effect on the 28th October 2014 of the amendments comprised in the Thirty-third Amendment of the Constitution ("the Thirty-third Amendment"). The 28th October 2014 ("the establishment day") was the day on which the Court of Appeal was established under the Thirty-third Amendment.

 

With effect from the establishment day, the Supreme Court exercises, subject to such regulations as may be prescribed by law, appellate jurisdiction -

 

(a) from a decision of the Court of Appeal if the Supreme Court is satisfied that-

 

  i. the decision involves a matter of general public importance, or

  ii. in the interests of justice it is necessary that there be an appeal to the Supreme Court (Article 34.5.3 of the Constitution) and

 

(b) from a decision of the High Court if the Supreme Court is satisfied that there are exceptional circumstances warranting a direct appeal to it - a precondition for the Supreme Court being so satisfied of the presence of either or both of the following factors:

 

  i. the decision involces a matter of general public importance;

  ii. the interests of justice (Article 34.5.4 of the Constitution).

 

The jurisdiction and powers of the Supreme Court from 28th October 2014 are outlined in the "Jurisdiction" section of this website.