The Sharia courts have general jurisdiction over most civil and criminal cases. At present, there are two types of courts of first instance: general courts and summary courts dealing with lesser cases. Cases are adjudicated by single judges, except criminal cases if the potential sentence is death, amputation or stoning when there is a panel of three judges.
There are also two courts for the Shia minority in the Eastern Province dealing with family and religious matters. Appellate courts sit in Mecca and Riyadh and review decisions for compliance with Sharia.
There are also non-Sharia courts covering specialized areas of law, the most important of which is the Board of Grievances. This court was originally created to deal with complaints against the government, but currently also has jurisdiction over commercial and some criminal cases, such as bribery and forgery, and acts as a court of appeal for a number of non-Sharia government tribunals. These administrative tribunals, referred to as "committees", deal with specific issues regulated by royal decrees, such as labor and commercial law.