Introducing the National Court Framework
- About the National Court Framework
- Update on the National Court Framework
- Benefits for Litigants
- Description of National Practice Areas
- NCF Presentations
- Contact information
The Court possesses a national and international reputation for jurisprudence and practice of the highest quality. The Court has earned this reputation by undertaking continuous improvement to its practices, processes and technology.
With the introduction of electronic court files, the Court has the opportunity to create a truly national court across its subject areas and to create efficiencies in case management. A national court structure allows the Court to organise the Court's work along practice area lines rather than the current practice of organising the Court's work along Registry lines.
The Court is in the process of reinvigorating its case management approach through the National Court Framework (NCF). The NCF has four main goals; to:
- organise and manage nationally the whole of the Court's work by reference to the great subject matter areas of the Court's work;
- organise the Court's resources to meet the demands of the broad range of work done by the Court;
- develop the confidence of the profession and the community, particularly in areas requiring a degree of specialised skill and knowledge; and
- broaden the base of judicial knowledge and experience in the Court.
To achieve those goals, the Court will restructure itself, broadly, as follows:
- Restructure the system of allocation of matters to ensure efficiency, national consistency and the allocation of matters to Judges in the most appropriate manner;
- Create, with consultation, new simplified practice notes reflecting the national practice areas, driven by a central case management practice note which offers guidance to parties, the profession and judges about critical aspects of practice; and
- Operate a carefully managed docket system to support judges and facilitate timely judgment delivery, with allocation principles taking account of workload management, practice area expertise, and the character of matters filed.
The Court has conducted a public consultation exercise to seek feedback from the profession on the draft Central Practice Note, draft National Practice Area (NPA) Practice Notes and the draft Class Actions Practice Note. This feedback is being reviewed and considered by the Court.
The National Court Framework reinvigorates the Court's case management approach.
The benefits for litigants include:
- Simplified practice and procedure
- Access to judicial experience and expertise
- Early scheduling conference
- Enhanced facilitation of ADR (mediation)
- Bearing in mind the interests of the parties, the Court will endeavour, where possible, to set a matter down for hearing within six months of the case management hearing
- Judgment delivered within approximately 3-6 months of the completion of the trial
- Encouragement of lump sum or apportioned cost orders at the time of judgment
The Court recognises the need for a degree of specialisation. This will be reflected in the NPAs and sub-areas. The subject matter areas of the Court's work will be organised under the NCF into eight National Practice Areas (NPAs) and sub-areas. The NPAs and sub-areas are:
National Practice Areas
- Commercial and Corporations NPA
Commercial and Corporations NPA sub-areas:
Commercial Contracts, Banking, Finance and Insurance
Corporations and Corporate Insolvency
General and Personal Insolvency
Economic Regulator, Competition and Access
Regulator and Consumer Protection
International Commercial Arbitration
- Administrative and Constitutional Law and Human Rights NPA
- Native Title NPA
- Taxation NPA
- Intellectual Property NPA
Intellectual Property NPA sub-areas:
Patents and associated Statutes
Copyright and Industrial Designs
- Employment and Industrial Relations NPA
- Admiralty and Maritime NPA
- Criminal Cartel Trials NPA
- Commercial and Corporations NPA - Practitioners' Consultation Forum (pptx - 168 kb)
- Employment and Industrial Relations National Practice Area - Practitioners' Consultation (pptx - 361 kb)
For further information about the National Court Framework, please email email@example.com.
Updated March 2016