18 March justice sector updates due to COVID-19

18 March justice sector updates due to COVID-19

Wednesday, 18 March 2020

Organisations across the justice sector are taking active steps to limit the spread of COVID-19. 

An update about courts and tribunal services across Victoria, correct as at 18 March 2020:

  • Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal will be conducting residential tenancy and guardianship matters only by phone, with all other matters being adjourned.
  • The Magistrates' Court of Victoria has announced a number of operational changes, though all court venues remain open and operating.
  • The Children’s Court is operating as usual.
  • The Chief Justice of Victoria made a statement on Monday about no new jury trials in the County and Supreme Courts, and possible further measures. The court user survey has also been postposed
  • The Administrative Appeals Tribunal is screening parties and making alternative arrangements if a risk is identified.
  • The Federal Court has vacated all matters requiring in person attendance, with exceptions and is looking at technological alternatives.
  • The Family Court is still hearing urgent, priority and FV matters and adjourning property and non-urgent parenting matters. There are limits on the number of people allowed in courtrooms. As many matters will be done by phone as can be.
  • The High Court will not be sitting in Canberra or on circuit in the months of April, May and June. The question of future sittings will be reviewed in June.

There are also changes to services from many community legal centres, please refer to individual centres for details. 

The government’s ban all non-essential indoor gatherings of more than 100 people does not apply to public transport, courts and prisons, offices, factories and construction sites.

More information

Department of Health and Human Services information about COVID-19


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