Practice Direction 9 of 2020
FAMILY DIVISION – COVID-19 EMERGENCY PROTOCOL
MELBOURNE, MOORABBIN & BROADMEADOWS VENUES OF THE CHILDREN’S COURT
This Practice Direction is issued pursuant to Section 592 of the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005.
This Practice Direction introduces further temporary measures necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic for the management of proceedings in the Family Division of the Children’s Court of Victoria (the Court) at Melbourne, Moorabbin and Broadmeadows. This Practice Direction revokes Practice Direction 1 of 2020 for these venues of the Court only.
This Practice Direction is to be read in conjunction with Practice Direction 6 of 2020 – Readiness Hearings and the Reintroduction of Reserved Submissions that commenced on 1 June 2020.
In accordance with Practice Direction No. 9 of 2020 the following procedure applies in all Family Division matters currently listed for mention.
- All mentions will be adjourned by the court except where consent minutes to some other order or a request for hearing are filed by 5pm on the preceding day. The court will adjourn the mention in the absence of the parties and the existing order will be extended on the same terms and conditions for 6 weeks where the child is in Out of Home Care and for 8 weeks where the child is in parental care.
- Where minutes of consent or a request for hearing form are filed by 5pm on the preceding day, a Magistrate will consider the proposed minutes or the request for hearing. If granted, the hearing will be listed and the parties notified.
- At any time after the adjournment, any party may apply for a Conciliation Conference, Reserve Submissions Hearing or a Readiness Hearing by completing and filing the request for hearing form with the court. A Magistrate will then determine whether the matter is suitable for such a hearing having regard to the grounds set out in the application, and in the absence of the parties. If a hearing is granted, it will be listed to be heard remotely, and the parties notified.
- Minutes of consent may also be filed at any time in advance of the new mention date.