- Under the National Court Framework, the Federal Court’s practice documents have been consolidated and refined from 60 practice documents to 25 new national practice notes.
- The new practice notes took effect on 25 October and, to the extent practicable, apply to proceedings whether filed before or after that date.
- The aim of the reforms is to ensure consistent but flexible practices across all registries.
- Through the reforms, there is an emphasis by the Court on eliminating process-driven litigation and tailoring case management to the needs of the case and the parties.
The Federal Court of Australia is in the process of implementing its National Court Framework (‘NCF’) reforms. A key component of the reforms is a review of the Court’s practice documents to ensure nationally consistent and simplified practice.
Under the NCF, the Court’s practice documents have been consolidated and refined from 60 practice documents to 25 new national practice notes.
The new national practice notes took effect from 25 October 2016, and to the extent practicable, apply to proceedings whether filed before, or after, the date of issuing. Although these practice notes have become effective immediately, the Court is aware that, depending on the nature of each case and what stage it may be at, a period of adjustment will be necessary. To that end, the Court will take a flexible and common sense approach to any difficulties that may arise with any new procedures being applied in any existing cases.
At the time of issuing the new practice notes, all previous practice documents were revoked. There will no longer be any administrative State-based notices.
The new practice notes fall into three categories: