No 4 of 2005

Committal Proceedings - Adjournments

For your information, I attach a copy of an Administrative Direction (No 1 of 2005) issued by the Chief Magistrate.

The background to that Direction is the Court’s experience that adjournments to the taking of depositions, usually before Justices of the Peace, are both frequent and occur on short notice. In many cases, adjournments are occurring for reasons which could have been avoided if timely preparation of cases had occurred.

Such adjournments undermine the due administration of justice and they are wasteful of public resources.

Adjournment requests pursuant to the Justices Act 1959 section 50B with regard to the taking of depositions will be considered by the Chief Magistrate in chambers on the basis of the Court file and any affidavit material that the parties see fit to file with the Court. Any such affidavit must set out, in detail, any facts that a party requests the Chief Magistrate to consider. Supporting documentary material must be exhibited to the affidavit.

The representatives of the parties should be ready to appear before the Chief Magistrate on short notice in order to support their joint application

A party should anticipate that an application to a Justice of the Peace on the day allocated for the taking of depositions for adjournment of those proceedings, whether part heard or not, will be adjourned to a magistrate for determination. That application will be listed as soon as practicable on that day before a magistrate, by video link is necessary.

It should be anticipated that:

(a) the taking of depositions will not be listed for hearing until a magistrate has been assured that the matter is ready to proceed to completion without adjournment, and

(b) the representatives of the parties will be required to attend before a magistrate for the mention of the matter approximately 14 days before the date set for the taking of depositions in order to provide a final reassurance to the Court that the matter is ready to proceed to completion without adjournment or to advise the Registry in writing as to that matter.

DATED the 13th day of January 2005

Roger Illingworth
North and North-West
Magistrates Court of Tasmania