Family Law Courts to resume face-to-face hearings as COVID-19 restrictions ease
Since March 2020, the Family Law Courts have conducted over 80% of their work via electronic hearings due to the effects of the COVID-19 crisis. As Australia now begins to “re-open”, The Honourable Chief Justice Alstergren has advised that the Family Law Courts will begin to gradually resume face-to-face hearings.
From 15 June 2020 each major Registry will open four courtrooms to conduct face-to-face hearings. Given the health concerns and social distancing requirements, a full utilization of courtrooms may still be a number of months away as further restrictions continue to be eased.
As stated above, there will be strict social distancing and capacity requirements in place that will have to be met in relation to not only the space within courtrooms but also people queuing at security and waiting to use an elevator. An updated Court Face-To-Face Protocol is available via this link to the Family Court website.
Watts McCray Lawyers continue to be able to advise our existing clients and any new clients experiencing family law issues by telephone and arrangements can also be put in place for video conferencing as appropriate. Please visit our Contact page for further assistance. Alternatively, you can read about the changes we have implemented here: Watts McCray addresses the challenges of COVID-19.