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  Australia Criminal & Civil Court Record Check
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Search Australian Courts, Boards and Tribunals by state or nationwide for Criminal and Civil Court records. Statewide civil or criminal records check, search the court system for the States and Territories of New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia and the territories of Australian Capital Territory, Jervis Bay Territory, Northern Territory and external territories of Ashmore and Cartier Islands, Australian Antarctic Territory, Norfolk Island, Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Coral Sea Islands Territory, Heard and McDonald Islands

Comprehensive Nationwide civil & criminal records check for Australia covers available courts, boards and Tribunals of the following. Lookup lawsuits, judgments, convictions, rulings, opinions, legal proceedings, trials, case summaries, dispositions and other dockets.
 
 

Australia Federal Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

 

High Court of Australia
Family Court of Australia
Federal Court of Australia
Federal Magistrates Court of Australia
Federal Magistrates Court of Australia - Family Law
Industrial Relations Court of Australia
Administrative Appeals Tribunal
Australian Competition Tribunal
Australian Designs Offices Decisions
Australia Domain Name Decisions
Australian Industrial Relations Commission
Australian Patent Offices Decisions
Australian Takeovers Panel Decisions
Australian Trade Marks Offices Decisions
Copyright Tribunal Decisions
Defence Force Discipline Appeal Tribunal Decisions
Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Decisions
Immigration Review Tribunal Decisions
Insurance Ombudsman Service
Migration Review Tribunal Decisions
National Native Title Tribunal Decisions
Refugee Review Tribunal Decisions

 

New South Wales Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

Supreme Court of New South Wales
Supreme Court of New South Wales - Court of Appeal Decisions
Supreme Court of New South Wales - Court of Criminal Appeal Decisions
Compensation Court of New South Wales
District Court of New South Wales (Pharmacist Appeals)
Drug Court of New South Wales
Land and Environment Court of New South Wales
Administrative Decisions Tribunal of New South Wales
Administrative Decisions Tribunal Appeal Panel of New South Wales
Chief Industrial Magistrate's Court of New South Wales
Community Services Appeals Tribunal of New South Wales Decisions
Consumer, Trader and Tenancy Tribunal of New South Wales Decisions
Dust Diseases Tribunal of New South Wales Decisions
Fair Trading Tribunal of New South Wales Decisions
Industrial Relations Commission of New South Wales Decisions
Nurses and Midwives Tribunal of New South Wales Decisions
Pharmacy Board of New South Wales Decisions
Physiotherapists Tribunal of New South Wales Decisions
Psychologists Tribunal of New South Wales Decisions
Residential Tribunal of New South Wales Decisions
Strata Schemes Board of New South Wales Decisions
Workers Compensation Commission of New South Wales

Queensland Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

Supreme Court of Queensland - Court of Appeal
Supreme Court of Queensland
Queensland District Court
Queensland Industrial Court
Queensland Planning and Environment Court
Anti-Discrimination Tribunal Queensland
Land and Resources Tribunal of Queensland Decisions
Queensland Building Tribunal
Queensland Body Corporate and Community Management Commissioner
Queensland Children Services Tribunal
Queensland Commercial and Consumer Tribunal - Architects List Decisions
Queensland Commercial and Consumer Tribunal - Building List Decisions
Queensland Commercial and Consumer Tribunal - Engineers List Decisions
Queensland Commercial and Consumer Tribunal - Gaming List Decisions
Queensland Commercial and Consumer Tribunal - Liquor List Decisions
Queensland Commercial and Consumer Tribunal - Manufactured Homes List Decisions
Queensland Commercial and Consumer Tribunal - Plumbers and Drainers List Decisions
Queensland Commercial and Consumer Tribunal - Property Agents and Motor Dealers
Queensland Commercial and Consumer Tribunal - Retirement Villages List Decisions
Queensland Guardianship and Administration Tribunal Decisions
Queensland Industrial Relations Commission Decisions
Queensland Information Commissioner Decisions
Queensland Liquor Appeals Tribunal Decisions
Queensland Property Agents and Motor Dealers Tribunal
Queensland Racing Appeals Authority Decisions
Queensland Retirement Villages Tribunal
Racing Appeals Tribunal of Queensland

Victoria Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

Supreme Court of Victoria - Court of Appeal
Supreme Court of Victoria
Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Decisions
Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal/Administrative Appeals Tribunal of Victoria
Victorian Anti-Discrimination Tribunal
Victorian Domestic Building Tribunal Decisions
Victorian Legal Profession Tribunal Decisions
Victorian Mental Health Review Board Decisions

Western Australia Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

Supreme Court of Western Australia
Supreme Court of Western Australia - Court of Appeal
District Court of Western Australia
Criminal Injuries Compensation Assessor of Western Australia
Guardianship and Administration Board of Western Australia Decisions
State Administrative Tribunal of Western Australia Decisions
Strata Titles Referee of Western Australia Decisions
Town Planning Appeal Tribunal of Western Australia Decisions
Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission Decisions
Western Australian Information Commissioner Decisions

South Australia Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

Supreme Court of South Australia
District Court of South Australia
South Australian Industrial Relations Court
Licensing Court of South Australia
South Australian Wardens Court
Environment Resources and Development Court of South Australia
Equal Opportunity Tribunal of South Australia
South Australian Industrial Relations Commission Decisions
South Australian Residential Tenancies Tribunal Decisions
South Australian WorkCover Levy Review Panel Decisions
South Australian Workers Compensation Appeal Tribunal Decisions
South Australian Workers Compensation Tribunal Decisions

Tasmania Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

Supreme Court of Tasmania
Anti-Discrimination Tribunal of Tasmania
Resource Management and Planning Appeal Tribunal of Tasmania Decisions
Workers Rehabilitation and Compensation Tribunal of Tasmania Decisions

Australian Capital Territory Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

Supreme Court of the Australian Capital Territory - Court of Appeal
Supreme Court of the Australian Capital Territory
Administrative Appeals Tribunal of the ACT Decisions
Discrimination Tribunal of the ACT Decisions
Residential Tenancies Tribunal of the ACT Decisions
Tenancy Tribunal of the ACT Decisions

Northern Territory Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

Supreme Court of the Northern Territory
Supreme Court of the Northern Territory - Court of Appeal
Supreme Court of the Northern Territory - Court of Criminal Appeal
Northern Territory Anti-Discrimination Commission Decisions
Northern Territory Residential Tenancies Commissioner Decisions

Norfolk Island Criminal & Civil Court records, Boards and Tribunals

Supreme Court of Norfolk Island

 
The Australian Court System

High Court of Australia


The highest court in Australia is the 'Federal Supreme Court, also known as the High Court of Australia'. The Australian Constitution requires that there shall be a Chief Justice and not less than two other Justices of the High Court. Today there are six other Justices. Initially, Justices were appointed for life. An amendment was made to the Australian Constitution in 1977 which limits the terms of Justices appointed after that date such that they retire at seventy years of age. Any constitutional links between Australia and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, including the avenue of appeal from State courts exercising State jurisdiction to the Privy Council, were abolished by the Australia Act of 1986. This does not, make any changes to the position of the Monarch of UK in their capacity as the Monarch of Australia.

The Federal Court of Australia

This Court was created by the Federal Court of Australia Act 1976 and began to exercise its jurisdiction on 1 February 1977.  This Court sits in each State, in the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory.  The Federal Court has such jurisdiction as permitted by laws made by the Commonwealth Parliament, including, for example, in relation to matters in which a writ of mandamus or prohibition or an injunction is sought against an officer of the Commonwealth Government, in bankruptcy, corporations law, industrial relations, taxation and trade practices law. The Federal Court is also a court of disputed returns in respect of elections under the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission Act 1989. The Federal Court of Australia also has appellate jurisdiction over the decisions of single judges of the Court, decisions of the respective Supreme Courts of the Australian Territories, except the Northern Territory, and certain decisions of State Supreme Courts when exercising federal jurisdiction.

The Family Court of Australia

The Family Law Act 1975, became effective on 5 January 1976. This law deals with the dissolution and nullity of marriage, custody and welfare of the children, maintenance and the settlement of property between the parties to a marriage in Australia.

This Act provides that irretrievable breakdown of a marriage is the only grounds of divorce. This ground is established if the husband and wife have lived separately and apart from each other (including separation under the same roof) for twelve months and there is no reasonable likelihood of their reconciliation. The Family Law Act also deals with the guardianship, custody and access to and maintenance of ex-nuptial children and provides jurisdiction for the settling of disputes between divorced persons in respect of their property and for maintenance of spouses where this is appropriate. There is also separate child support legislation providing basis for calculation and enforcement of maintenance of children. The Child Support Agency, established in 1988 as part of the Australian Taxation Office, administers the Child Support Scheme, by which maintenance is assessed on the ability of both parents to pay, and payment of court ordered maintenance enforced by allowing for deductions to be made directly from salaries and wages.

Industrial Relations Court of Australia

This court was established in March 1994 and deals with industrial relations matters, such as the interpretation and enforcement of industrial awards and certified agreements and the regulation of various matters relating to unions. However Legislation effective May 1997 transferred the jurisdiction of the Industrial Relations Court to the Federal Court.

The Federal Magistrates Court

This Court was established by the Federal Magistrates Act 1999. This court is an independent federal court under the Constitution. The Federal Magistrates jurisdiction includes family law and child support, administrative law, bankruptcy law and consumer protection law. This jurisdiction is shared with the Family Court of Australia and the Federal Court of Australia and in some areas state courts.

State and Territory Courts

In Australia State and Territory courts have original jurisdiction for all matters under State or Territory laws, and in issues concerning federal laws, where jurisdiction has been conferred on the courts by the Commonwealth Parliament. Most criminal matters, whether arising under Commonwealth, State or Territory law, are dealt with by State or Territory courts. Every Australian State and inhabited Territory, except the Australian Antarctic Territory and the Jervis Bay Territory, has its own court system consisting of a Supreme Court, in many jurisdictions an intermediate court - generally known as the District or County Courts - and local courts of summary jurisdiction. In some cases States have also established specialist courts that exercise jurisdiction limited by subject matter.

State and Territory Supreme Courts

Australian States and Territories have their own Supreme Courts. These deal with final civil litigation and the most serious criminal cases. These courts have appellate jurisdiction over the lower State courts. A Full Court of a Supreme Court can hear appeals from a decision of the Supreme Court when constituted by a single Judge.

State and Territory Intermediate Courts:

These courts decide a majority of serious criminal offences where a jury is required. They also decide on civil litigation having certain monetary limits.

State and Territory Courts of Summary Jurisdiction

These courts deal with ordinary (summary) offences, such as traffic infringements, minor assaults, street offences, civil litigation for debt recovery, smaller claims by one citizen against another or against a company, as well as certain maintenance, custody and property disputes under jurisdiction conferred by the Family Law Act. These courts are presided over by a magistrate and juries are not used in these courts.

Small Claims Courts

Small claims courts deal with minor legal disputes and have a more informal structure. These courts have a limitation on any recovery of costs. In some jurisdictions legal representation is only permitted by agreement between all parties involved.

Australia Legal System and Classification of crimes.

The Australian legal system is derived from, and still closely follows, that of the United Kingdom. In addition to parliament-made law, there is the "common law~ inherited from the English courts which has since been developed and refined by Australian courts. It should be noted, however, that since 1963 Australian courts have ceased to regard English decisions as superior or even equal in authority to those made by Australian courts. The legal system is adversarial in nature and places a high value on the presumption of innocence. Due to the federalist system of government, there are nine separate legal systems in operation. Although there are some significant differences between these systems, they are essentially similar in structure and operation.

Definitions and Classification of Crimes in Australia

In Australia Crime is generally defined as any conduct which is prohibited by law and which may results in punishment. Crimes can be classified as either felony, misdemeanor or minor offenses, but more commonly they are classified as indictable or not indictable offenses. Indictable offenses are those which are heard by the superior courts and may require a jury, whereas non-indictable offenses, which comprise the vast majority of court cases, are heard in magistrates courts, where no juries are employed. While there are some classification differences among the various jurisdictions, in all jurisdictions indictable offenses generally include homicide, robbery, serious sexual and non-sexual assault, fraud, burglary and serious theft. In some jurisdictions, such as South Australia, there is a group of "minor indictable" offenses which can be heard in the superior or lower courts, according to the wish of the accused. Criminal justice statistics are based on a classification scheme which divides crimes into offenses against the person, property offenses and "other".

Age of criminal responsibility. The minimum age of criminal responsibility and the upper age limit for hearings in juvenile courts varies among Australian States and Territories. The minimum age of criminal responsibility, followed by the maximum age limit for hearings in the juvenile court in the various jurisdictions are as follows: New South Wales: 10 and 17; Victoria: 8 and 16; Queensland: 10 and 16; Western Australia: 7 and 17; South Australia: 10 and 17; Tasmania: 7 and 16; Northern Territory: 10 and 16; and the Australian Capital Territory: 8 and 17. The minimum age of criminal responsibility in juvenile courts is 7, while the minimum age to be tried in an adult court is 16. In all jurisdictions, any child above the age of criminal responsibility who is charged with homicide can be tried in an adult court. In some jurisdictions, juveniles may have their offenses tried in adult courts for offenses such as rape and treason.

Drug offenses. Drug offenses constitute a major focus of all Australian criminal justice systems. The possession, use, sale, distribution, importation, manufacturing or trafficking of a wide range of drugs is illegal in all Australian jurisdictions. Illegal drugs include: marijuana (cannabis), heroin, designer drugs (ice, ecstasy), amphetamines (speed, LSD) and cocaine (including crack). While the possession or use of any of these drugs is illegal, in some jurisdictions, notably South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory, marijuana has been partially decriminalized. Its possession or use may result in the imposition of a relatively small fine without the need to appear in court.

Australian Police powers and Police Procedures

Police officers may use "appropriate" force when encountering violent persons. "Appropriate" is defined by the level of force required to overcome and apprehend the person(s). Police officers may use "lethal" force on a person if they believe their life or the life of another person is in danger. "Lethal" is defined as the level of force that might result in the person's death. All police officers carry handguns and handcuffs. They rarely carry batons; these are usually kept in police cars. In general, a police officer may stop and apprehend any person who appears to be committing, or is about to commit, an offence. The vast majority of arrests are made without a warrant although there are jurisdictional differences concerning prerequistes to arrest. As an alternative to arrest, police can "caution" suspects. There are published guidelines used by the police in relation to the cautioning of suspects, especially for juveniles. Cautioning can be informal, in which the individual police officer warns the offender. Cautioning can also be formal, in which the suspected offender is required to appear before a senior officer for the cautioning, although no court appearance is required.

Search and seizure. Police are generally required to obtain a search warrant from a judge or a magistrate before they enter premises and seize property. However, illegal drugs and weapons can be seized without a warrant.

Confessions. Whereas the issue of obtaining confessions from suspected offenders has been a controversial subject in the past, the controversy has diminished with the onset of video. Virtually all interviews with persons suspected of serious offenses are videotaped.

Australia has one police force for each of the six States and the Northern Territory. There is also a Commonwealth agency known as the Australian Federal Police which provides police services for the Australian Capital Territory and is also involved in preventing, detecting and investigating crimes committed against the Commonwealth. Thus, there are eight separate police forces for the nation. There are, however, a large number of other agencies which have specific law enforcement functions, including health inspectors, tax officials, and immigration and customs officers. All Australian police forces have a hierarchical organization. In the larger police forces, the chief officer is known as the Commissioner, except in Victoria, where he or she is known as the Chief Commissioner. The larger forces also have one or more Deputy Commissioners and a number of Assistant Commissioners. Below these ranks are Chief Superintendents, Superintendents, Chief Inspectors and Inspectors. Officers achieving the rank of Inspector or above are known as commissioned officers. The remaining ranks consist of Senior Sergeants, Sergeants, Senior Constables and Constables. In the State and Northern Territory police forces, the administration is divided into geographical districts, which are themselves divided into divisions and subdistricts. There is also a movement towards increasing the autonomy of regional police commanders in many Australian police forces. The Commissioner of Police is directly accountable to a Minister, but the Minister is usually not permitted to influence the operation and decisions of police commanders. An Australian Police Ministers Council (APMC) meets at least once a year and is supported by the Commissioners in this context as the Senior Officers Group (SOG). The APMC and SOG structures have attempted to create a higher level of cooperation and uniformity of police practices throughout Australia. Australian police forces are not closely associated with the military forces. Australian military forces have no responsibility for the maintenance of civil order. However, on very rare occasions the military forces have been required to provide assistance to the police. In the event of a serious natural disaster, such as a flood or bush fire, the military forces are asked to assist the police and other civilian authorities.

Australia Judicial Process and Rights of the Accused:

In Australia All accused persons have the right to defend themselves in court but in serious cases most prefer to be represented by a legal practitioner. A recent decision by the High Court of Australia held that in all serious matters if the accused does not have access to legal advice, the case must be adjourned. (Dietrich, 1992). In any trial, both the prosecution and the defense have the right to question and cross examine witnesses. In New South Wales, the accused person also has the right to make an unsworn statement, thus avoiding being cross- examined by the prosecution. This practice has been abolished in all other Australian jurisdictions.

Assistance to the accused. A national system for the provision of free legal aid to accused persons was established in 1993 and subsequently some of the States have established legal service commissions which monitor and oversee the provision of this service. Eligibility to receive legal aid depends on the financial means of the individual and the merit of the case being defended. Legal aid is provided either through the salaried staff of a Legal Aid Commission or by assignment to private legal practitioners. Also, an extensive number of Aboriginal legal services throughout Australia receive separate funding from national or state leqal services.

Australian Procedures for bringing suspects to trial:

Arrested persons are brought to a police station where charges are brought against them. Before being charged, the arrested person is usually searched. The police are empowered to use force if the search is resisted. In all serious cases, arrested persons are photographed and finger printed before being charged. If no charges are brought, the accused person is released. In most jurisdictions the police allow arrested persons to make a telephone call to a legal adviser, friend or relative. After the charging procedures are completed, the accused is either released on bail or held in custody. The role of the police in pre-trial decision- making includes performing the necessary investigation and detection work, filing charges and, except for the Australian Capital Territory, prosecuting the case in court. In some cases and in all Federal matters, the Director of Public Prosecutions is involved in determining what charges will be brought. If the Director decides that the case should be heard on indictment (heard in a superior court), a committal or preliminary hearing in a lower court is usually held in order to discover whether there is sufficient evidence to proceed with the trial. If the accused pleads guilty to a charge, the judge or magistrate may immediately impose a sentence without setting the case for trial. Thus, guilty pleas help to speed case flow and reduce case overload in the court system. If the accused pleads not guilty, the evidence of the prosecution and defense are heard in an adversarial manner in court. Cases involving serious charges are heard in a higher court with a 12-member jury. However, in some cases, the accused person has the right to waive a jury trial.

Who conducts prosecutions in Australia?
Police will often conduct the prosecution for lower court cases, but not for those in the higher courts.

Alternatives to trial. In some jurisdictions there are alternatives to formal charging and court appearance procedures. These alternatives involve the use of community justice centers or dispute resolution centers to provide for the resolution of disputes between conflicting individuals. The proceedings in these centers are relatively informal and the hearings are less expensive than court procedures. In addition, most States have small claims tribunals or courts that allow for minor matters to be settled without involving the police or lawyers. Although plea bargaining is not officially permitted in any jurisdiction, some commentators have suggested there exists a form of charge bargaining, an arrangement by which an individual chooses to plead guilty to one or two particular charges with the understanding that other charges will be dropped.

Pre-trial incarceration in Australia.
Pre-trial incarceration is usually referred to as "remanded in custody".

Australia Bail procedure
In all jurisdictions there is a strong presumption in favor of granting bail. Bail can be granted either by police or by the courts. There are three main grounds for the denial of bail and remanding an individual in custody: 1) to prevent the offense from being continued or repeated; 2) to ensure that the offender does not abscond and appears in court as required; and 3) to ensure that the accused person does not interfere with the process of justice (for instance, by contacting jurors or witnesses). Generally, suspects brought on very serious charges, such as homicide, are remanded in custody for a substantial period of time while awaiting trial.

Australia Extradition and Treaties

Extradition. Australia has entered into a number of treaties with foreign countries to facilitate the extradition of offenders and to provide mutual assistance in the investigation of serious crime.

Exchange of prisoners. Australia has not yet, however, entered into any multilateral or bilateral treaties which would facilitate the transfer of foreign prisoners. This subject is under active consideration in Australia at the present time (1993). The available evidence suggests that approximately 200 Australian prisoners are serving sentences in as many as 30 countries in other parts of the world, and a slightly larger number of foreign prisoners are serving sentences in Australian prisons.

 

 

 

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