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Coronavirus and the Courts

The coronavirus pandemic is having a substantial impact on courts all around Australia.

We have created this page to help courts, and court users, understand the different practices that have been put in place across the jurisdictions.

This information was last updated on 3 April 2020 at 4.00pm.

Victoria 
Federal
New South Wales
Queensland 
South Australia
Western Australia 
Tasmania
ACT
Northern Territory

Victoria 

Supreme Court

annoucnment Latest announcement 

Measures:

  • Registry Services – Registry, Probate Office, Court of Appeal – Application Books and Authorities and Inspection of Subpoenaed Material to be done via appointment
  • Filing of documents in Probate related matters must be sent via post
  • All ‘in person’ applications for admission indefinitely adjourned. Admissions to occur ‘on papers’.
  • Schedule available on Supreme Court website lists names of those admitted to practice on 31 March 2020 - The Chief Justice extends her warmest congratulations
  • Crimes Mental Impairment applications – where appropriate and consented to by parties will be decided on papers. Presiding judge will set timeline for written submission via email. Where necessary hearing submissions or oral evidence will likely be done via AV link
  • Costs Court – Filing summonses for taxation to be done electronically. 5 May 2020 callovers to be conducted by telephone, the Court cannot confirm a time and asks parties to be available on the date. 
  • Mediations and Taxations to be conducted via phone or Zoom
  • Preliminary hearings or reviews to be conducted on papers (preferred) or via phone or Zoom
  • Probate Office - From Monday, March 30, an affidavit of searches is no longer required for applications for probate and administration. The documents required to accompany those applications must be sent via post
  • In the Common Law Division, jury trials will now proceed before a judge alone, will be heard via telephone or AV link and parties will be asked to lodge court books electronically
  • Practice Court matters will be dealt with on papers
  • Civil Circuit, Institutional Liability, Major Torts, Personal Injuries and Professional Liability Lists to be dealt with on papers, unless otherwise specified
  • Fast tracking homicide matters to the Supreme Court – with consent from the accused, parts of the committal process may progress straight to the Supreme Court to assist the Magistrates’ and Children’s Courts
  • Initial directions hearings for fast tracked homicide matters in the Supreme Court will be dealt with on papers or via AV link
  • New jury trials suspended from 16 March until further notice. Existing trials to be completed 
  • Admissions ceremonies suspended from 17 March until further notice. Admissions may be conducted on the papers, with applicants swearing or affirming their oaths or affirmations remotely before an authorised affidavit taker, and submitting an affidavit of proof of taking the oath or affirmation. Court will then make orders admitting those applicants 
  • Persons affected by COVID-19 who are required to attend court to notify the Prothonotary 
  • All Court of Appeal hearings to be conducted by AV link. Judges and court staff will be present in court, but parties will appear remotely. With agreement, Court of Appeal will determine matters on the papers 
  • Court of Appeal judgments to be delivered without the parties’ attendance 
  • Commercial Court directions hearings and interlocutory applications will only be heard in-person in exceptional circumstances. If consent orders are not possible, parties to outline areas of disagreement and matter will be dealt with on papers, by AV link or telephone 
  • From 25 March 2020 all company winding-up applications will be heard by telephone 
  • Commercial Court trials will be conducted electronically with witnesses giving evidence remotely. Short trials will be prioritised. Judgments will be delivered without the parties’ attendance 
  • In the Common Law Division, matters that were listed as jury trials will now proceed as judge-alone, unless a judge adjourns the proceedings. Trials will be conducted using telephone or AV links for parties, counsel and witnesses unless a judge directs otherwise. Where in-person hearings are required, strict time limits will be imposed, and listing times staggered to allow for social distancing 
  • Practice Court applications and Common Law interlocutory and case management hearings will be determined on the papers unless a judge orders otherwise. Judgments will be delivered without the parties’ attendance 
  • Non-jury matters in the Criminal Division will continue where parties are available. AV links will be used where required and available. Where in-person hearings are required, listing times may be staggered to allow for social distancing 

County Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • The Court will scale down its work from Monday 30 March 2020, until Thursday 9 April 2020. The Court will focus on high priority, urgent or essential matters. Details for each Division outlined on the Court's website
  • Registry remains open. From 31 March, face-to-face services will only be available in urgent circumstances after an initial assessment via telephone
  • File documents electronically using the Court’s e-filing systems. The Court will allow electronic signatures temporarily 
  • Appointments must be made for witnessing affidavits, certifying documents and inspecting subpoenaed material and must only be made for urgent matters. Registry will assess urgency over the phone
  • New jury trials suspended from 16 March until further notice. Existing trials to be completed at the direction of the presiding judge 
  • Persons affected by COVID-19 who are required to attend court to notify the Registry 
  • Social distancing measures introduced for matters heard in person, limiting the number of people presenting the courtroom and staggering appearances 
  • Legal practitioners are not required to robe in the Criminal Division 
  • Parties strongly encouraged to email documents to avoid handing documents up in court. 
  • Court is installing separate lecterns on the Bar table in the most frequently used courtrooms, where possible 
  • Moving to conducting all pre-trial Directions Hearings and case management matters on the papers or remotely 
  • Rolling Special Directions List to begin on 1 April to manage listing of vacated jury trials, but no bail applications based on suspension of trials to be entertained before or at the special directions hearing. Jury trials not expected to resume until Q4, 2020 
  • Parties may seek administrative adjournment of matters in Reserve List if: 
    • there are no pre-trial arguments and no outstanding issues for resolution 
    • there is no need for case management 
    • both parties agree to an administrative adjournment 
  • Pre-trial argument will continue, with delivery of required rulings 
  • Indictable pleas and sentences, and appeals against sentence from Magistrates’ Court brought forward. Pleas and sentence-only appeals to be conducted as much as possible on the papers. However, for especially serious matters, this may be difficult given the need of the accused to give instructions and test evidence. The court is exploring how to address this 
  • For sentence-only matters, the Court is working to limit the number of non-practitioners in court, including AV links for remanded prisoners, remote viewing for non-parties (friends, family, victims, support-people) and AV links or telephone for witnesses 
  • Appeals against conviction from Magistrates’ Court temporarily suspended 
  • Common Law and Commercial Divisions to focus on judge-alone trials of short duration (2 days or less in Common Law Division, 5 days or less in Commercial Division), with greater use of AV links.  Parties to provide information on duration and required number of witnesses for court to consider whether listing should be maintained. Parties encouraged to engage in Judicial mediation where scheduled listing cannot be maintained 
  • Directions Hearings in Common Law Division to be conducted by AV link, except for Confiscation List, Adoptions List, and Appeals and Post Sentence Applications List
  • For cases in Appeals and Post Sentence Applications List, matters with current hearing date will proceed. Parties expected to make every effort to ensure matters are heard and determined within 2 days, and that witnesses give evidence remotely. Longer matters may be adjourned. No further directions hearings will be held except for matters under the Serious Offenders Act 2018 and applications for compensation under Sentencing Act 1991 s 85B
  • Appeals against decisions under the Family Violence Protection Act 2008, the Personal Safety Intervention Orders Act 2010 and the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 will not be listed for directions or hearing
  • Longer Trials in the Commercial Division will be referred to Judicial Registrars to vacate and re-timetable. Shorter trials will be listed for directions hearing before Judicial Registrars by AV link or telephone to determine if the trial can proceed, given need to ensure physical distancing and avoid passing physical documents 
  • Summons listed in Commercial Division before Duty Judge will proceed, but parties encouraged to co-operate with Duty Judge chambers for determination on the papers or by remote determination using AV link or telephone. Judicial Registrar determinations will almost all be made on the papers 
  • Directions Hearings, interlocutory applications and applications under security of payment legislation and s 57(4) of the Domestic Building Contracts Act 1995 in the Building Cases List will be determined on the papers where possible. If hearing is required, AV link or telephone will be used, with in-person hearings only in exceptional circumstances 
  • County Koori Court will sit on a case-by-case basis, hearing urgent matters if appropriate to ensure vulnerable Indigenous accused are diverted from custody with appropriate community supports. Social distancing arrangements will be in place for the sentencing conversation 
  • All Court Divisions to conduct hearings remotely or electronically (including Zoom video conference software) where possible 

Magistrates’ Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Magistrates’ Court venues remain open, however a range of non-urgent matters have been adjourned
  • Persons affected by COVID-19 who are required to attend court to phone the court before entering the building

Civil Matters

  • No practitioners or parties are to attend court unless otherwise directed
  • All required documents to be filed via email or post
  • Parties encouraged to resolve matters by consent
  • Non-urgent matters will be heard on papers
  • All decisions will be delivered in writing, by telephone or AV link
  • All proceedings to be referred to Prehearing Conference to be conducted via teleconference with Registrars.
  • All required documents to be emailed 14 days prior to Prehearing Conference
  • Contested hearings to be adjourned, and listed for Early Neutral Evaluation (ENE) before Magistrate who will not hear the contested hear. Time line for ENE specified by Practice Note. ENE to be conducted by telephone or AV link
  • Civil prehearings will be conducted by telephone
  • Workcover hearings limited to cases where the plaintiff is the only witness, with consent orders to be done on the papers
  • Personal service may be effected by registered post, with service proved by an Australia Post received receipt. Ordinary service may be effected by email

Bail and Summons Matters

  • All criminal proceedings (except filing hearings, committal mentions and committal hearings) where the accused is on summons or bail adjourned until 15 June 2020
  • All summons and bail matters (except filing hearings, committal mentions and committal hearings), the accused is not required to attend. Bail will be extended in the absence of the accused.
  • Filing hearings and committal mentions will proceed. Where accused is on summons or bail their attendance is not required if legal representative attends with instructions
  • Bail custody and contested committals – new listing dates detailed on Court website
  • No appearance required by practitioners or accused in special mentions provided they inform the Court
  • Legal practitioners and prosecution to consult with each other and court to set dates for contested committals
  • Where accused is in custody, the Court will continue to hear most criminal proceedings via AV link. Summary contests will be vacated and listed for mention on 15 June 2020
  • First listing time for criminal matters extended to at least 20 week (summons) or 12 weeks (accused on bail)
  • Koori Court suspended
  • Therapeutic programs (Drug Court, ARC List, CISP, family violence practitioners) to use telephone contact as much as possible
  • Intervention order proceedings
  • New listing timeframes available on Court website. First listing for urgent matters to be decided on a case by case basis

VOCAT 

  • VOCAT will continue to process application
  • For urgent requests, parties instructed to contact local court VOCAT registrar
  • Directions hearings via telephone
  • Listed hearings adjourned until 15 June 2020 
  • Authorised psychological counselling and urgent report assessments to be undertaken by phone or remotely

VCAT

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • All venues closed to the public, VCAT will be hearing some matters via telephone
  • No face-to-face hearings are scheduled, and all non-critical cases listed up to and including 15 May 2020 will be adjourned for the foreseeable future
  • VCAT will contact you regarding your matter
  • Residential Tenancies and Guardianship matters and a small number of other critical matters to be heard by telephone. Any material for these lists to be emailed to the Tribunal
  • VCAT is still accepting applications about any matter that falls in VCAT's jurisdiction. All non-critical matters will be postponed to a future date

Children’s Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

Attending Court

  • Entry to Children’s Courts restricted. All persons who do not need to be at Court are asked not to enter
  • Wherever possible, court users are not to appear in person but via AV link or telephone
  • People are NOT permitted to enter the Children’s Court if they have travelled overseas in the last 14 days, been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 or have flu-like symptoms

Family Division

  • Families are not required to attend Court if lawyers hold up-to-date instructions
  • Children are not to be brought to Court, unless no other arrangements are available
  • Conciliation conferences will be conducted with lawyers only in attendance and family members (including children) participating by telephone
  • Clinical assessments made prior to 23 March will be reviewed. Thereafter any clinical assessments will be suspended unless ordered by the Court
  • Family Drug Treatment Court will suspend face to face meetings and will provide support via electronic/telephone communication. Monitoring hearings will be conducted via telephone
  • For cases in which parties consent or do not oppose proposed orders, parties are to complete an electronic form available on Children’s Court website

Criminal Division

  • Children’s Koori Court suspended until further notice
  • Charges on Summons to be listed or adjourned for 12 weeks, unless otherwise ordered by Court
  • For cases in which parties consent or do not oppose proposed orders, parties are to complete an electronic form available on Children’s Court website
  • All CAYPINS matters to be adjourned for 16 weeks

Coroners Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • No hearing which requires the physical attendance of any person at the Coroners Court will proceed
  • Inquest Findings, Summary Inquests, Direction Hearings and Mention Hearings will be facilitated through technology
  • Inquests are adjourned to a date to be fixed but not before 31 May 2020
  • Investigations are ongoing
  • The Court is exploring alternative ways to conduct hearings

Federal 

High Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Registry services will be provided via telephone and online. In urgent circumstances, face-to-face services may be provided after initial assessment via telephone
  • Documents to be filed electronically using electronic filing facility. Documents may be faxed or emailed to relevant registry where electronic filing is unavailable
  • The Court will temporarily allow electronic signatures on documents 
  • Inspection of documents by appointment only. Appointments only for matters in the subsequent 4 weeks or otherwise urgent matters
  • Arrangements will be made to hear some matters on papers or via telephone or AV link. If these arrangements are not able to be made, matters may be vacated or adjourned
  • Short listings may be conducted on papers or via telephone
  • Longer listings will undergo a triage process to prioritise matters and may continue through the use of remote access and file sharing technology 
  • New Practice Direction -  documents to be filed for cases commenced before 1 January 2020 to be emailed as PDF attachment to relevant Registry Office
  • Office hours of Registry will be from 10.00am to 1.00pm
  • All sittings suspended in April, May and June. Future sittings will be reviewed in June
  • Judgements will continue to be delivered
  • Special leave applications and urgent matters will be dealt with

Federal Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Public facing counters and face-to-face services closed from Tuesday 24 March 2020 
  • Registries are still working to provide services via telephone and online
  • Documents to be filed electronically or via email. Those who do not have access to these methods to contact registry by telephone
  • Court will allow electronic signing of documents
  • Viewing subpoenaed materials by appointment only for matters to be heard in the next 4 weeks
  • Court will contact parties for regarding newly filed judge matters
  • Court will contact parties for listed matters to make arrangements to hear matters on papers, via telephone or AV link
  • If alternative arrangements are not possible, matters may be vacated or adjourned
  • For longer listings, practitioners and parties must work with the court to identify how and when listings may proceed
  • Federal Court has commenced communicating with all parties with matters listed for hearing in the upcoming months
  • Parties are requested to identify (with the assistance of the Court) opportunities for listings to proceed via telephone or other remote access technology

Family Court and Federal Circuit Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Family Court remains open to assist people and recognises that compliance with court orders may be difficult in changing circumstances
  • Registries are open for telephone calls and online services
  • Parents are encouraged to reach alternate agreements, if necessary. These should be in writing and consent order applications for varied parenting orders may be filed electronically
  • The Court will continue to conduct hearings via AV link or telephone and face-to-face in limited circumstances
  • Family Dispute Resolution services remain available online
  • Public facing counters and face-to-face services closed from Tuesday 24 March 2020 
  • Registries are still working to provide services via telephone and online
  • Priority will be given to urgent matters (e.g. those involving risk of family violence)
  • New Practice Direction taking effect immediately - all documents should be e-filed or emailed to relevant registry. Hard copy documents should not be posted or delivered to Registry
  • Viewing of subpoenas by appointment only. Parties should only request to view subpoenaed material if the matter is urgent
  • Signatures on documents and affidavits may be done electronically
  • Different protocols for different lists, wherever possible matters will continue via telephone or AV link, or will follow face-to-face protocols
  • Parties will be contacted by the Court indicating that a matter will be heard by telephone
  • Parties will have an opportunity to approach the court seeking that a matter not proceed via telephone
  • For face to face hearings, priority will be given to urgent matters that the judge considers cannot be dealt with over the phone
  • Urgent and priority trials and contested hearings to proceed in safest manner possible
  • Non-urgent property only and parenting trials may be adjourned at discretion of the judge
  • Trials or hearings to be conducted by telephone where possible
  • High volume lists to be staggered to reduce the number of people in attendance at one time
  • For final hearings the judge will conduct a telephone callover for defended hearings in the next 2 months. Parties should the judge of the urgency and status of the case
  • Low priority cases may be sent to ADR event and the matter will be adjourned until further notice
  • High priority cases will remain listed and following in-court protocol 
  • Security screening will also be staggered
  • Appeals in Sydney commencing the week of 20 April and 18 May will be conducted for no longer than 1.5 hours in court with judges appearing via AV link or telephone if necessary
  • Appeals in Adelaide commencing the week of 4 May will be conducted for no longer than 1.5 hours in court with presiding judge and the other two judges appearing via AV link or telephone
  • Appeals in Melbourne commencing the week of 4 May will be conducted with all three judges appearing via AV link or telephone
  • Trials or hearings to be conducted by telephone where possible. Parties will be provided with listing times and operational instructions for telephone hearings by the Court
  • 8 person cap on non-court staff in a courtroom at one time. Any additional people must remain outside the courtroom
  • Sydney Federal Circuit Court callovers vacated and adjourned to a date to be fixed. Callovers in Federal Circuit Court in Brisbane, Parramatta and Adelaide postponed until further notice
  • Regional circuits of the Federal Circuit Court under review and may be adjourned or conducted by telephone
  • Migration matters that can be conducted by telephone or AV link to proceed. If an in-person hearing is required, it may be postponed, subject to urgency of the case
  • Other general federal law matters may proceed in person at judge’s discretion, if safe and subject to 8 person in-court cap
  • Registrar migration lists suspended
  • Parties encouraged to only bring essential attendees to court
  • Parties not to enter courtroom until matter is called
  • Changes to Registrars’ practices to maximise the use of telephone and AV link hearings
  • High volume lists to be staggered to reduce the number of people in attendance at one time
  • Matters may be adjourned if not practicable via telephone and non-urgent
  • Matters that are not practicable via telephone and are urgent will proceed face-to-face
  • Interpreters will also appear via telephone if possible
  • Short matters for mention or directions hearings will be listed at 30 minute intervals
  • Longer contested matters will not be listed for more than 1.5 hours, with time between hearings for cleaning to occur
  • 8 person cap on non-court staff in a courtroom at one time. Any additional people must remain outside the courtroom
  • Social distancing in the courtroom is required. Seats will be marked in each courtroom (1.5-2 metres apart). 
  • All applications and documents must be e-filed or emailed to Registry. Where possible, avoid handing up documents directly
  • Child Dispute Conferences will be conducted via telephone, parties will be sent details
  • Family report interviews will proceed, unless otherwise advised

AAT

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • AAT is closed to all visitors from Thursday 26 March 2020 until further notice. 
  • Cases will be heard by telephone or AV link.
  • Applications and documents must be lodged online.
  • Staff remain available to answer calls, emails and process online applications

New South Wales 

Supreme Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Court of Appeal – in addition to filing physical Appeal Books and White Folders, parties should also file electronic copies on USBs, CDs, DVDs or via email. Contact Registry to arrange delivery
  • Common Law Duty List – no in person hearings unless otherwise approved by Chief Justice. Matters to be dealt with via telephone or AV link, or in chambers where appropriate. 
  • Documents to be provided by email, except for lengthy documents which can be provided in hard copy to be arranged with Associates
  • Equity Duty List Matters to be dealt with via telephone or AV link. Applications for urgent matters may be made to Associates via email 
  • Commercial, Technology & Construction and Commercial Arbitration Lists, (if not dealt with on consent) will be dealt with on papers unless a hearing is deemed necessary. Hearings will be conducted via telephone or AV link
  • Court of Appeal – practitioners should no longer provide hard copies of authorities, these should be provided electronically by email
  • Corporations List will continue to be available for urgent matters. Appearance by AV link or telephone, only in person for exceptional circumstances with leave of Chief Justice or the Chief Judge in Equity
  • In the Real Property List parties must confer in advance of listing date and make every effort to agree upon suitable consent orders, which can be made in Chambers. Otherwise parties must submit proposed order to the Associate in advance
  • From Tuesday 24 March 2020 no personal appearances in any matters unless in exceptional circumstances with leave from the Chief Justice or head of jurisdiction
  • Documents must be submitted via Online Court, E-Subpoena or Online Registry 
  • Documents may only be sent by email where facilities do not currently exist for online submission . Details for email contacts will be provided via Court website
  • Public Registry will be closed from Tuesday 24 March 2020 
  • Face-to-face duty registrar services will be suspended. Telephone appointments will continue
  • Face-to-face Court annexed mediations suspended from Monday 23 March 2020. Mediations can proceed by teleconference
  • Court will review operations with a view to maintaining open justice, consistent with current health advice
  • Registrars lists to be conducted by AV link or online
  • New jury trials suspended until further notice. Existing trials to be completed

District Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Media may access Virtual Courtrooms online. Instructions on how to access on Court’s website
  • From 1 April, applications to vary bail will be dealt with in chambers. Applications by the defendant, and consent or opposition by the prosecution to the variation, is to be emailed. Only in compelling cases will a hearing take place, which will be via AV link
  • From Monday 30 March the Court will conduct hearings as much as possible through AV link
  • From 1 April 2020 new Judge alone trials, sentencing hearings, Local Court Appeals, arraignments and readiness hearings, where the defendant is not in custody will be temporarily suspended
  • The Court will continue to hear criminal matters where the defendant is in custody as much as possible
  • Registry will notify parties to matters that have been suspended and will advise of new listing dates which will be after 1 May 2020
  • Practitioners are encouraged to notify the Court of any urgent criminal matters where the defendant is in custody
  • Current jury trials and Judge alone trials to continue 
  • No new trials in either the criminal or civil jurisdictions are to commence today
  • Exceptions for new sentence matters or appeal matters in which defendant is appearing via AV link or otherwise authorised by Chief Judge
  • Criminal trials which may proceed by Judge alone or in which there are pre-trial issues to be determined are to be stood over until Wednesday 25 March 2020 
  • All other criminal trials are to be vacated and given dates after October 2020 
  • Readiness Hearings to be conducted by AV link
  • General civil list and motions list managed by judicial registrar to be conducted online or by telephone

Local Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement 

Measures:

  • From 1 April to 1 May 2020 AVO hearings:
    • ADVO proceedings with related CAN will be adjourned until CAN listing date
    • ADVO without CAN adjourned for no less than 3 months
    • Provisional orders may be listed up to 6 months from date of order
  • Urgent AVO applications will still be accepted. Applications to be emailed to the Court, which will assess urgency 
  • Private applications for AVOs – persons encouraged to seek remedies from the Police, where this is not possible contact Registry
  • Appearances by persons in custody to be by AV link
  • No prisoner will be taken to a Court
  • It will not be possible to hear defended hearings where defendant is in custody
  • Any hearings listed (both Criminal and Civil) in which the defendant is NOT in custody listed from 23 March 2020 to 1 May 2020 to be vacated and listed for mention in the week of the 4 May 2020. If a change of plea is indicated, may be listed earlier to be dealt with
  • List matters which are not listed for hearing to be dealt with electronically
  • Those who have recently returned from overseas, have flu-like symptoms or have been in close contact with a suspected or diagnosed case of COVID-19 are not to attend Court
  • First return dates with self-represented litigants may be dealt with by email, along with requests for adjournments
  • Self-represented defendants can (on fist occasion only) contact the court to request an adjournment or enter plea via email or written notice
  • Self-represented defendants can enter a plea of guilty by email or in writing and will not be required to attend for sentencing unless magistrate considers that is absolutely necessary
  • Not guilty pleas may be entered by email or in writing
  • Return dates and fixing dates for hearing to be dealt with in the absence of the parties
  • Proceedings where the defendant does not respond will be adjourned until June
  • Applicants for domestic violence orders do not need to attend police applications unless the proceedings are fixed for hearing
  • Where proceedings are listed for hearing, parties to notify the court if there is a change of circumstance (guilty plea / withdrawal of proceedings) which removes the need for attendance
  • Civil notices of motion and review list to be conducted by teleconference, with argument limited to 15 minutes
  • Small claims to be heard by teleconference

Children's Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement 

  • The conduct of care hearings are suspended until at least 1 May 2020 unless a hearing can be conducted on the papers or a part-heard case can be concluded safely
  • Urgent care applications where a child has been removed or assumed into care will continue to be heard at Parramatta Children’s Court until further notice
  • Directions lists will continue
  • Lawyers for the applicant are to contact all other parties, propose directions or orders and attempt to achieve consent, then email the Court a summary
  • If a party disputes the proposed directions or orders, this may in writing via email or orally. The Court will determine the matter on written submissions (via email) or via AV link (for oral submissions)
  • The Court will receive unsworn affidavits and may receive unsigned documents if it is not possible to get electronic signatures
  • Documents to be filed should be emailed to Registry
  • Criminal proceedings listed between Tuesday 24 March and Friday 1 May will be vacated and listed for call-over after 1 May 2020 
  • Part heard matters may continue at the discretion of the presiding judicial officer
  • Any applications to relist for bail variation, release, variation of orders, hearing on the papers or further directions should be made via email to relevant registry
  • Where defendant is in custody matters may be heard by telephone or AV link if the accused is legally represented
  • Where defendant does not have legal representative, matters will be adjourned for 4 weeks
  • Lists scheduled in the Care jurisdiction will continue. Parties should not attend court premises wherever possible
  • Travel of judicial officers for circuit sittings is suspended. Judicial officers will appear at circuit locations by AV link from other courts

Coroners Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement 

  • Up to 30 June 2020, only Court matters that can be conducted using technology to allow parties, witnesses and families to appear will continue. 
  • All other inquests in that period will be adjourned to a later date. Families and parties are being notified by the Court
  • All inquests scheduled in country locations in that period will be given new dates
     

NCAT

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • From Monday 30 March 2020 the Tribunal will conduct all hearings in all Divisions and the Appeal Panel via telephone, AV link or on papers
  • No face-to-face hearings will take place without approval of the President
  • Priority will be given to urgent cases. Non-urgent matters will be listed in the last quarter of 2020
  • The Tribunal has outlined which matters are urgent in each list on their website
  • Documents may be filed via email and post
  • Water jugs and water glasses removed from hearing rooms
  • Hearings closed to those who are not parties or representatives of established news-media organisations
  • Those who have recently returned from overseas, have certain symptoms or have been in close contact with a suspected or diagnosed case of COVID-19 are not to attend NCAT

Queensland 

Supreme Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • All new jury trials in the Supreme and District Courts are suspended. Existing trials to be completed
  • Parties are encouraged to take steps to agreeing on orders or directions. Agreed orders or directions are to be emailed to court
  • Applications to be emailed to Court. Will be heard on papers where appropriate or via telephone or AV Link. Only urgent applications will be dealt with in person
  • Appearances will be by telephone or AV link
  • Presiding judge will determine if matters can be conducted via telephone or AV link
  • Social distancing measures enacted for face-to-face hearings
  • Admissions ceremonies suspended. Admissions scheduled for 6 April cannot proceed. Applications for admission will be adjourned to a later date
  • Those who are unwell or have been overseas instructed not to attend a court location
  • Those not directly participating asked to consider whether attendance at court is necessary

District Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • All new jury trials in the Supreme and District Courts are suspended. Existing trials to be completed
  • Presiding judge will determine if matters can be conducted via telephone or AV link
  • Social distancing measures enacted for face-to-face hearings
  • From 23 March onwards, staggering of hearings at 30 minute intervals starting at 9.30, subject to judges deciding otherwise
  • If parties reach consents, notify Associate via email for matter to be heard on papers. Parties should seek matters to be heard on papers where possible, or via telephone or AV link. Face-to-face appearances will only occur where necessary
  • Parties are encouraged to seek administrative listing or delisting of sentence hearings and non-jury matters, where both sides are in agreement

Land Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

  • Land Court will continue to deal with matters as listed via AV link or teleconference. No parties need apply for leave of the Court to appear in this way
  • Social distancing measures will be enforced for in person hearings
  • All parties are requested to file documents by mail or email wherever possible

Magistrates’ Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • From 30 March 2020 no physical appearances in court except, by an Aggrieved in an urgent non-police, private domestic violence application, by the media, or with leave of the Court 
  • All matters to be conducted via telephone or AV link including persons in custody 
  • All documents to be emailed to the Court
  • Courts will hear:
    • Overnight custody arrests – both adults and children 
    • Urgent domestic violence applications including applications to vary domestic violence orders 
    • Urgent child protection applications including applications to vary existing child protection orders 
    • Bail applications including applications to vary bail 
    • Domestic violence applications currently before the Court which have not been considered 
    • Sentences, including lengthy sentences, where a person is likely to be released from custody 
    • Where a defendant is in custody- committal and summary mentions 
    • Urgent regional Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) matters heard in the Magistrates Court. 
    • Applications under the Police Powers and Responsibilities Act 2000 
    • Civil applications dealt with on the papers 
    • Other matters where leave is given by a Magistrate
  • All other matters, civil and criminal, will be adjourned to a later date. Parties will be notified. 
  • Temporary domestic violence orders will continue for period of adjournment
  • Until further notice, all criminal matters where a defendant is on a Notice to Appear or bail will be adjourned to a date not less than 2 months from the first appearance
  • Urgent applications for leave to hear a matter may be made via email

Children’s Court

  • Same practices apply as in Magistrates’ Court, except for the below
  • Each of the Courts sitting will hear: 
    • Overnight custody arrests - children 
    • Urgent child protection applications 
    • Bail applications including applications to vary bail 
    • Sentences, including lengthy sentences, where a child is likely to be released from detention 
    • Sentences where any delay affects whether an offender is treated as an adult or child under Part 6 Division 11 subdivision 4 of the Youth Justice Act 1992. 
    • Where a defendant is in detention- committal and summary mentions 
    • Applications under the Police Powers and Responsibilities Act 2000 
    • Other matters where leave is given by a Magistrate
  • All other criminal and child protection matters be adjourned on the papers by a Magistrate without appearance to a date to be fixed
     

QCAT

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • From Monday 30 March 2020 Guardianship matters to proceed via telephone or AV link, documents to be filed via email
  • From Monday 30 March 2020 urgent Tenancy matters to proceed via telephone or AV link. Applications must include all relevant material. If applicant intends to appear in person, they must contact registry
  • All non-urgent Minor Civil Disputes from Monday 30 March will be adjourned
  • All other hearings in week of Monday 30 March will proceed via telephone or AV link
  • All other hearings listed between 6 April and 26 June will be adjourned
  • All Directions Hearings, Compulsory Conferences and Dispute Resolution hearings will be conducted by telephone
  • All other Mediations to be adjourned to a later date
  • Persons are not encouraged to appear in person at QCAT

Coroners Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

  • All inquest hearings scheduled to commence in Brisbane before 30 June 2020 will be adjourned
  • Inquests across the rest of the State will also be adjourned to a date to be fixed after July 2020
  • The Court will continue to finalise findings and deal with applications via telephone or AV link

South Australia 

Supreme Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • From Monday, 6 April 2020 the Courts Administration Authority will no longer be accepting cash or cheque payments. Payments can be made with a debit or credit card. Exceptions will be made for the payment of cash bails ordered in court
  • From Monday 30 March 2020 all Mediations will be postponed until June 2020
  • Documents to be filed via email or registered post
  • Directions hearings to be conducted by electronic audio communications unless otherwise decided by the judge. Any documents to be submitted by email 
  • Civil and Criminal Listing Conferences to be conducted by electronic audio communications unless otherwise decided by the judge
  • No changes to arraignments 
  • Applications for Permission to Appeal (criminal and civil – single judge) to be decided on papers. Written submissions to be provided by email
  • Applications for Permission to Appeal (civil – full court) – no changes
  • Magistrates Appeals – Parties required to provide full written submissions. Documents must be provided by email before the hearing. Hearing time will be shortened to reflect full submissions required
  • Sentencing Hearings – Parties required to take reasonable steps to minimise length of hearing, including providing factual summaries, chronologies and submissions the day before the hearing
  • Length of hearings will be limited to 2 hours. 
  • Defendants in custody will appear via AV link
  • Jury trials will be managed consistent with public health directions. Jurors will not be confined to jury box. Public access to courtroom limited. Jurors will retire to adjacent court room for breaks. Exemptions granted for jurors who are genuinely anxious about or physiologically vulnerable to COVID-19
  • Civil trials to continue. Parties to provide documents electronically wherever reasonably practicable. Counsel required to consider measures to expedite hearing or limit hearing to truly contested issues. Counsel to raise with the Judge if safe distancing practices or other public health practices have limited their capacity to properly prepare for the trial
  • Public encouraged not to attend court
  • Possession matters (except where order for possession sought) or matters under Corporations Act 2001 (except for winding up applications) to be dealt with in same way as directions hearings
  • Settlement conferences to be held at alternative venues
  • Mediations postponed unless all parties consent to mediation taking place
  • Admissions ceremonies cancelled until further notice. Certified applicants will be admitted. Contact Court to arrange taking the oath and signing the Roll

District Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • All matters before District Court Masters for the 4 weeks commencing 14 April will be:
    • All non-contentious directions hearings to be conducted via email. All adjournments and consent orders via email
    • If parties cannot agree on consent orders, a telephone link will be arranged for hearings. If this is not possible, only as a last resort, will an in-person hearing take place observing social distancing measures 
    • Currently listed settlement conferences may be conducted via telephone or AV link without court involvement. Parties are to advise chambers of the outcome
    • No documents are to be handed up in court
    • Parties are to do their utmost to resolve arguments and if not, consider whether they can limit the argument to submissions on the papers
  • From Monday, 6 April 2020 the Courts Administration Authority will no longer be accepting cash or cheque payments. Payments can be made with a debit or credit card. Exceptions will be made for the payment of cash bails ordered in court
  • Documents to be filed via email or registered post
  • Public encouraged not to attend court
  • New jury trials suspended on 16 March. Existing jury trials to continue at discretion of presiding judicial officer
  • Judge alone criminal trials, pre-trial argument, bail applications, guilty pleas, arraignments and civil trials unaffected. Court is looking to bring forward trial dates for judge-alone trials from later in the year.
  • New applications for election for judge-alone trial may be dealt with administratively, and if granted, an early trial date will be considered
  • Not guilty arraignments to be listed with a view to minimising the number of people in court at any one time. Accused in custody to appear by AV link unless parties notify the court otherwise. Counsel encouraged to wait with their client outside the courtroom until the matter is called
  • First directions hearing callovers cancelled
  • Guilty plea arraignments will be listed with view to minimising the number of people in court at any one time
  • Sentencing to be conducted by AV link if defendant in custody unless request for defendant to appear in person
  • Non-contentious directions hearings before Masters to be done by email
  • Masters hearings to be conducted with 1.5m social distancing rule, and parties encouraged to contact the court to arrange possible telephone hearing in contentious interlocutory matters
  • Settlement conferences to be held at alternative venues
  • Practitioners instructed not to come to court if they have fever, flu-like symptoms, have returned to Australia in last 14 days or have had close contact with a COVID-19 case
  • Practitioners vulnerable to infection to contact the court to make alternative arrangements

Magistrates Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • From Monday, 6 April 2020 the Courts Administration Authority will no longer be accepting cash or cheque payments. Payments can be made with a debit or credit card. Exceptions will be made for the payment of cash bails ordered in court
  • Courts will continue to run overnight custody lists, bail applications, major indictable lists and Family Violence lists
  • The first return and general lists will be vacated and fresh dates given to defendants who already have received a summons
  • The matters vacated from general lists in April will be moved into July. May will go into August and June into September.  Parties will be given a new date
  • Upon written application to the Registry, defendants wishing to finalise their matters by way of guilty plea will be given a date and time
  • No documents to be handed up in court
  • All necessary documents must be emailed to the relevant registry and other parties by 3pm the business day prior to hearing 
  • Practitioners instructed not to come to court if they have fever, flu-like symptoms, have returned to Australia in last 14 days or have had close contact with a COVID-19 case
  • Practitioners vulnerable to infection to contact the court to make alternative arrangements
  • Parties and practitioners to maintain at least 1.5m distance from court staff and each other
  • Directions hearings to be conducted by email or phone
  • Applications listed for argument may be conducted by phone
  • Conciliation conferences to be held at alternative venues or by telephone
  • Civil trials to proceed as normal except for 1.5m social distancing and restriction on handing up documents
  • Greater use of administrative adjournments
  • Treatment Intervention Court program modified to reduce social contact, with group activities suspended.
  • Abuse Prevention Program under the Family Violence Court suspended. Assessment interviews will take place by telephone. New people may be referred to the program, but it will not start until program recommences

Youth Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • From Monday, 6 April 2020 the Courts Administration Authority will no longer be accepting cash or cheque payments. Payments can be made with a debit or credit card. Exceptions will be made for the payment of cash bails ordered in court
  • Trial books and applications to be made electronically via email
  • Practitioners instructed not to come to court if they have fever, flu-like symptoms, have returned to Australia in last 14 days or have had close contact with a COVID-19 case
  • Practitioners vulnerable to infection to contact the court to make alternative arrangements
  • Parties and practitioners to maintain at least 1.5m distance from court staff and each other
  • No documents to be handed up in court
  • Criminal matters may be administratively adjourned on consent. Parties to contested adjournments may apply to appear by phone or AV link
  • Care and Protection Interlocutory Hearings are not being automatically adjourned, but may be adjourned on application. Parties may apply to be heard by AV link
  • Care and Protection applications to be lodged electronically
  • No change to trial proceedings, but presiding judicial officer to decide how trial should proceed
  • Leave may be granted for witnesses to appear by AV link or telephone 

SACAT

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • From Monday, 6 April 2020 the Courts Administration Authority will no longer be accepting cash or cheque payments. Payments can be made with a debit or credit card. Exceptions will be made for the payment of cash bails ordered in court
  • Reception is closed for face-to-face services
  • Documents are to be lodged via email
  • All offsite hearings and visits suspended
  • Requirement for physical attendance at hearings suspended from Monday 23 March, with majority of hearings to be conducted by AV link or telephone
  • SACAT may require some matters to proceed in person, with hearings conducted in accordance with public health information and available social distancing
  • Matters that can be deferred will be identified and relevant parties will be contacted
  • All non-essential meetings, presentations or training will be conducted via telephone, AV link or postponed

Western Australia 

Supreme Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Chief Justice has clarified that the prohibition on public gatherings of more than 2 people does not apply to Courts and Tribunals, as they are essential services. However, Courts have taken measures to limit the number of people, observe social distancing and hygienic practices
  • Civil proceedings involving witnesses giving oral evidence will only proceed with approval of the Chief Justice based on the urgency of the matter. Arrangements for remote witnesses should only be made if approval has been granted
  • Civil proceedings will still be conducted by telephone or AV link where possible
  • New jury trials suspended. Judge alone trials not affected
  • People with flu-like symptoms or who have traveled overseas in the last 14 days directed not to enter Court precincts. Parties and practitioners affected by this direction to contact the associate of the presiding judicial officer
  • Recommendation that only practitioners, parties, witnesses and media attend hearings. General public asked not to attend
  • No in-person filing of documents in the Court of Appeal or Supreme Court Registry. Page limits previously imposed for documents to be filed by email or fax machine suspended
  • Practitioners and parties seeking to inspect documents produced under subpoena must make arrangements to avoid unnecessary attendances at Court building
  • In-person appearances at appeal hearings suspended. Appeals to be conducted by telephone or AV link. Offenders in criminal appeals will appear by AV link or, if necessary, phone
  • In appeals that involve calling witnesses, only counsel and self-represented parties must be present in the courtroom. Social distancing measures will be applied. Witnesses must appear by AV link from a remote location
  • In-person appearances at status conferences and directions hearings suspended. Status conferences and directions hearings to be conducted by telephone or AV link
  • Public access to Court of Appeal limited to sitting in upstairs gallery. Well of the court limited to judges, personal staff of judges and any necessary security
  • Directions hearings, case management conferences and strategic conferences to be conducted by telephone. Delivery of judgments to be conducted by telephone or on the papers
  • Contested chambers hearings and General Division appeals to be conducted by telephone or on the papers
  • No new mediation conferences other than in exceptional circumstances (e.g. plaintiffs suffering from dust diseases). Mediations may be conducted by telephone or in larger mediation rooms to ensure appropriate social distancing
  • Civil trials before judges and criminal trials before judges alone continue, but only in courtrooms that can ensure appropriate social distancing. Otherwise they will be vacated
  • Documents other than exhibits not to be handed up in open court save in exceptional circumstances. Documents to be provided electronically before the hearing
  • Formal admissions ceremonies to be deferred. Urgent applications for admissions may be dealt with by a single counsel moving all admissions, with only applicants to attend the hearing

District Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Chief Justice has clarified that the prohibition on public gatherings of more than 2 people does not apply to Courts and Tribunals, as they are essential services. However, Courts have taken measures to limit the number of people, observe social distancing and hygienic practices
  • Hearings will be conducted via telephone or AV link where possible. 
  • Those in custody will not be brought up or AV linked unless unrepresented
  • Where in person hearings continue, social distancing measures will be implemented 
  • All vacated matters will be listed for Compulsory Case Conferences 
  • New jury trials suspended. Judge alone trials not affected
  • Pre-trial conferences may be conducted off-site with the agreement of all parties
  • Sentence mention list to be broken into small groupings. Practitioners may appear by telephone. Accused on bail may answer bail by attending practitioner’s office and practitioner confirming client’s attendance, unless there is an issue with continuing bail or surety
  • Court users with COVID-19 symptoms and possible exposure, or who have recently travelled overseas or have contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case should contact the associate to the presiding judge on whether attendance is appropriate. Where possible, arrangements will be made for telephone or AV link attendance
  • Recommendation that only practitioners, parties, witnesses and media attend hearings. General public asked not to attend
  • No hard-copy filing of court documents. Documents to be e-filed or sent by email
  • Copy documents will not be accepted during hearings

Magistrates' Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

  • Chief Justice has clarified that the prohibition on public gatherings of more than 2 people does not apply to Courts and Tribunals, as they are essential services. However, Courts have taken measures to limit the number of people, observe social distancing and hygienic practices
  • Any person experiencing COVID-19 like symptoms and has travelled overseas or has been in contact with a confirmed or unconfirmed case of COVID-19, is directed not to enter the Court precincts. Instead, they must ring the Court to request that the hearing be adjourned
  • The Court recommends that only legal practitioners, parties, witnesses and media should attend court hearings. Other members of the public are requested not to attend.
  • People in the court building must comply with safe hygiene rules including hand washing, 1.5m social distancing, and hygienic approach to coughing / sneezing and disposal of tissues
  • Registry will remain open, but all parties are strongly encouraged to lodge documents electronically using the Court’s Electronic Document Management System (“EDMS”).
  • Where possible, documents should not be handed up to the judicial officer. Documents should be submitted electronically
  • At the discretion of judicial officers, hearings other than trials may be conducted by telephone.
  • Parties may reach an agreement whereby the accused is not required to attend court. 
  • Trials will continue as listed
     

WASAT

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Chief Justice has clarified that the prohibition on public gatherings of more than 2 people does not apply to Courts and Tribunals, as they are essential services. However, Courts have taken measures to limit the number of people, observe social distancing and hygienic practices
  • WASAT continuing to operate
  • Hearings and mediations will be conducted by telephone or AV link. Only in exceptional circumstances will face-to-face hearings occur
  • All persons instructed not to enter tribunal premises if they are unwell, have recently returned from overseas or been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
  • Documents to be lodged by email, post or fax and not in person
  • Priority will be given to Guardianship and Administration Applications or matters deemed urgent by Judges or Senior Members
  • Mediations and hearings deemed non-urgent will be vacated until a future date

Tasmania 

Supreme Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Criminal Registry – those on bail must still turn up to Court. Any cases listed under ‘Bail For Consent’ have been adjourned to a different date
  • As much as possible, cases will be heard via telephone or AV link
  • Bail applications to be made via email. Defendants in custody will not be brought to Court, unless otherwise directed by a judge
  • Judges will continue to hear guilty pleas. Including those in custody and on bail. Arrangements will be made on a case-by-case basis
  • Otherwise steps will be taken to identify and adjourn as many cases as possible
  • New listings will be communicated via email
  • Judges may conduct directions hearings via telephone
  • Jury trials will not resume until at least 21 July 2020
  • Those in custody will appear via AV link where necessary
  • All filing of documents to be done electronically by email to the court using PDF format
  • Full court appeals will be subject to telephone directions hearings. Parties to consider appearances by AV link and full written submissions 
  • Civil trials to be subject to telephone directions hearings. Parties to consider the use of written witness statements and written submissions, as well as the use of AV link for witness evidence, oral submissions or cross-examination
  • There will be no civil jury trials until further notice
  • Probate Registry remains open and is only accepting documents by mail or Document Exchange
  • No jury trials to commence for at least 4 months
  • Other cases including guilty pleas, bail matters, appeals, pre-recording of evidence and civil cases to proceed, with steps take to avoid the need for people to come to court and protect against risk of infection when at court

Magistrates Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Parties (including defendants in custody) may appear by telephone or AV link. Parties must provide contact details at least 2 days before hearing date
  • Some matters may be adjourned until after 1 July 2020
  • Priority will be given to hearings where defendants are in custody
  • Lodgement of documents to be done by email to relevant registry
  • Bail applications and variations may be heard by telephone or AV link, or emailed to relevant registry (for non oral applications)
  • Family Violence Order applications, Court Mandated Diversion, Mental Health List and Contest Mention Lists to continue via telephone or AV link
  • Youth Justice and Child Protection to continue via telephone or AV link. Priority given to matters where young person is in custody 
  • Traffic not guilty hearings and Commonwealth matters are suspended. Defendants will be advised or a new date
  • Restricted Licence applications that have been listed will be adjourned until after 1 July 2020
  • Civil Court Listings to be conducted by telephone or AV link
  • Any urgent matters must be accompanied by a note setting out why it is urgent 
  • Directions Hearings, Mediations and Conciliation Conferences to be conducted by telephone or AV link. Registry will contact parties to arrange this
  • Civil Hearings and Interlocutory applications etc. to be adjourned to a date to be determined by registry

ACT 

Supreme Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Any person who meets the guidelines for self-isolation or quarantining must not attend court premises. Any person who does not have immediate business at court (except for one support person for defendants/witnesses and journalists) must also not attend the court premises
  • All documents (except the original will) in the following probate applications: Grant of Probate, Letters of Administration (with will or without will) and Reseal of Foreign Grant are to be lodged with the Court via email
  • Where an original will is required, the original will is to be lodged by post or by placing in the post box located in the Court’s foyer
  • Anyone required to self-isolate should not attend court precinct. Including individuals on bail, summons or subpoena. Such people must contact registry to make other arrangements
  • Critical documents to be filed electronically via portal or via email (if unable to access portal). New practice note provides details on critical and non-critical documents and e-filing guidelines
  • Registry will not accept over the counter documents unless the person filing documents cannot access email or they are Court of Appeal appeal books
  • Recipients of critical documents via email are to acknowledge receipt of documents via email response
  • Registry will advice parties of “appearance dates”
  • Mediations and Criminal Case Conferencing will proceed as usual
  • Magistrates’ Court appeals will be conducted via AV link
  • Criminal and civil applications to be conducted via AV link
  • Jury trials to continue
  • Viewing subpoena material by appointment only for matters to be heard in the next 4 weeks. Only two people in viewing room at a time. Appointments made over the telephone with Registry
  • Registrar’s lists to be conducted by AV link
  • Court functioning with measures in place to adhere to government advice on social distancing

Magistrates' Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Any person who meets the guidelines for self-isolation or quarantining must not attend court premises. Any person who does not have immediate business at court (except for one support person for defendants/witnesses and journalists) must also not attend the court premises
  • From 30 March 2020 parties may apply to have urgent matters heard sooner
  • All other parties to matter must be copied in on applications. Parties will be advised of outcome via email or telephone

Civil Matters 

  • Some matters listed before 1 July 2020 will be vacated. Parties will be notified
  • Some lists will be heard via telephone or AV link

Family Violence and Personal Protection Order 

  • Applications will continue to be processed via email.
  • Final hearings before 1 July are vacated
  • Preliminary conferences up to and including 10 April 2020 will be vacated

Adult Criminal Matters

  • Documents to be filed by email or post, or in urgent matters hard copies can be left in post box at Court
  • Defendants in custody to appear via telephone or AV link
  • Matters before the Court on summons where the defendant is not in custody, not on bail and not scheduled to appear before the court for sentence will not proceed
  • Final hearings and breach lists before 1 July are vacated 
  • Defendants excused from appearing in Mentions and Pre-Hearing Mentions, unless entering a guilty plea which will be done by telephone or AV link
  • Criminal Party Conferences postponed until 1 July 2020
  • Documents to be filed with relevant registry electronically or via email

Children’s Court 

  • Criminal same arrangements as adult criminal matters apply
  • Children’s Court Civil – Case Conferences to proceed via telephone
  • All Children’s Court Care listing hearings and final hearings currently listed to occur before 1 July 2020 are vacated. The Court will inform parties in due course of future listing dates. 

ACAT

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • ACAT counter is closed
  • No face-to-face hearings will occur
  • Conferences, mediations and hearings will be via telephone or AV link
  • If you need to inspect documents or subpoenaed material contact the Tribunal to organise this
  • Current listings will continue unless otherwise specified
  • There will be no new listings before October 2020 (with some exceptions noted on ACAT website)
  • Documents can still be lodged by post
  • Some matters may be heard on papers only
  • Parties, representatives and witnesses invited to attend conferences, mediations and hearings by telephone
  • Instruction to people to stay home if they are unwell, have recently been overseas, have COVID-19 or have been in close contact with a confirmed case. Such people must ask to attend by telephone or ask for an adjournment
  • Advice to those attending in person to wash hands and use hand sanitiser on arrival
  • Water not provided in hearing rooms
  • Applications continue to be lodged in the usual way. But those who are unwell may ask for options to lodge by email or by online form.
  • Parties may ask for hearings to be conducted on the papers

Northern Territory 

Supreme Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • From Wednesday, 1 April 2020 the public facing counters in Supreme Court Civil Registry and Sheriff’s Office will be closed. Registry will continue to provide services via telephone and email
  • All new jury trials until 5 June 2020 are suspended. Current jury trials where a jury has already been empanelled will continue
  • Any matters that do not require empanelment of a jury will continue as listed
  • Registry will contact parties in relation to suspended trials to organise pre-trial hearings, mentions and directions hearings
  • Where possible, these hearings will be conducted by telephone or AV link
  • People advised not to enter court if they meet screening criteria for COVID-19
  • Judge’s Associate will contact parties one week prior to listing to advise of AV link or telephone hearing details 
  • In criminal matters, accused is excused from attending if represented
  • Parties wishing to proceed face-to-face to email Judge’s Associate explaining reasons for that position, and judge will decide whether counsel should appear in person
  • Associate Judges lists to be conducted by telephone (excluding criminal callover)

Local Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

Measures:

  • Circuit / ‘bush’ courts cancelled except for Tennant Creek
  • Remandees from remote areas will be held in local communities rather than transported to major centres. Will then appear by telephone or AV link
  • Those currently on remand will be dealt with in major court centres, with witnesses appearing by AV link or telephone
  • E-filing and appearances by telephone and AV link fast tracked
  • Mentions and pre-trial hearings to be held by AV link where possible

Children's Court

annoucnmentLatest announcement

  • All youths in detention will appear via AV link or telephone
  • Represented youths need not attend court unless matter is being finalised 
  • Responsible adults may appear via AV link or telephone

NTCAT & MHRT

annoucnmentLatest announcement

  • All parties strongly encouraged to attend via AV Link or telephone, rather than in person
  • Documents must be provided electronically to Tribunal and other parties
  • No hard copy documents (including USB drives) will be accepted of registry counter
  • All MHRT members will sit remotely via AV Link