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    Changes to the Courts in the wake of COVID-19

    18/03/20 9:39 AM

    On the 17th March 2020 most Courts announced measures to combat COVID-19. Here are the media releases from the High Court, Federal Court and Family Court.

    This means that most Court events will be cancelled until 30th June 2020. This is a significant announcement with major consequences for what the legal system will look like for the next few months. If you are currently in the process of a court matter, it is important to be in communication with your lawyer to see what this announcement will mean for you.

    Court events will be moving to electronic hearings as much as possible. Check the Court List or the Court portal to see if your matter is still listed. If your case moves to be online, you or your lawyer should be in touch with the Associate to the Judge in your matter to confirm details.

    If you believe your matter still needs to be heard by a Judge in person, you may have to make an application to the Courting via email outlining your reasons.

    If you or your lawyer have been directly impacted by COVID-19, then it is quite likely that the Court will accommodate a request for an adjournment or alternate orders. It is also important that if you have COVID-19 or have been in contact with someone who does, or someone who has travelled overseas in the last 14 days, that you do not attend Court. If this is you, you must contact the Court urgently to adjourn your matter or appear by telephone.  

    If you or your representative was waiting until the next Court date to negotiate, then that avenue is no longer available to you. Steps should be made to actively resolve all matters rather than relying on the burdened Court system.

    This announcement will mean that the Court system will be heavily burdened and there will be extensive delays. The ripples from this announcement will be felt for a long time.

    If you have further questions about what the closure of the Courts means for you, please contact us by calling our firm on (02) 9699 6023, or emailing us at 

    Andrea Harrold

    Written by Andrea Harrold