Important Federal Circuit Court of Australia ‘fast-tracking’ matters announcement – further callovers

Important Federal Circuit Court of Australia ‘fast-tracking’ matters announcement – further callovers

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

8 and 9 February, 13 March are new callover dates for matters listed for trial in April, May and June

The Melbourne Registry of the Federal Circuit Court of Australia (FCC) has been addressing waiting times.

The FCC has advised that a further callover of matters will occur on 8 and 9 February and again on 13 March 2018 for matters that are listed for trial in April, May and June 2018.

Callover(s) timing

  • 8 and 9 February – matters listed in April 2018 – compliance listing is the week of 13 March 2018
  • 13 March 2018 – matters listed in May and June 2018 – compliance listing for May 2018 trials will occur in late April 2018 (date TBC), and compliance listings for June 2018 trials will occur in late May 2018 (date TBC).

Prepare for your clients contacting you

The court will send letters to all parties in those matters advising them of the case management callover in early January. The letter encloses a document for the parties to complete, to assist with triaging of matters prior to the case management callover. Download an Example of the callover letter that will be sent to parties and solicitors (pdf, 34.59 KB). Please read that letter carefully so you are prepared to assist clients with associated queries.

The document enclosed in the letter must be completed and returned to the registry

The document enclosed in that letter must be completed and returned to the registry on the date nominated in the letter. On 8 and 9 February, and 13 March 2018, the FCC will conduct case management callovers at the Melbourne Registry. These callovers will run alongside the existing duty lists and will be conducted via staggered sittings. Parties will be advised of the callover date and time in their letter.

Matters will remain listed for trial but the triage process being put in place will help determine which matters may be suited to alternative case management pathways.

Victoria Legal Aid Family Dispute Resolution Service (FDRS)

It may be appropriate to refer your matter to FDRS for mediation, if at least one party to the proceedings is eligible for a grant of legal aid. An FDRS case manager will attend the February and March callover dates at the Melbourne registry to assist with any referrals made to the service. This can include booking a date for an FDRS conference, subject to the usual suitability assessment process. To contact FDRS with any questions prior to the February callover dates please call (03) 9269 0500.

Any requests for assistance, should be submitted as soon as possible – please be patient

If your legally aided matter is affected by this case management process, please ensure you have the appropriate grant of assistance. Any requests for assistance should be submitted as soon as possible. We expect that there will be an increase in the number of requests for assistance during this time. Assignments will endeavour to process requests within a reasonable period, but ask for your patience and understanding during this time.

Let us know whether you have capacity to take on any new clients

During this time, our duty lawyers will be providing referrals to any self-represented litigants who may be eligible for legal assistance. We would appreciate if you could let us know whether you have capacity to take on any new clients. If you are available for any client referrals please email AssignmentsFamily@vla.vic.gov.au, indicating your availability. If you indicate that you have capacity for referrals, our duty lawyers will contact you during this time with any potential referrals.

More information

If you have any questions, phone the Family Law Assignments team on (03) 9269 0600 or email AssignmentsFamily@vla.vic.gov.au.