Which Court do I sue in?

From 25 July 2011, the jurisdictional limit of the ACT Magistrates Court will increase from $50,000 to $250,000.

Background

From 25 July 2011, all matters in which the amount claimed is between $10,000 and $250,000 must be started in the Magistrates Court.

At present, matters up to $10,000 fall under the jurisdiction of the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal (ACAT), those up to $50,000 in the Magistrates Court and matters over $50,000 in the ACT Supreme Court.

Consequences

While these changes may help reduce the caseload and delays in the Supreme Court, they will certainly increase that of the Magistrates Court. This may result in civil matters taking more time to progress through the court process due to availability of Magistrates, hearing dates and court resources.

There are also costs consequences depending on the final judgment or award. For example, if a matter is commenced in the Supreme Court because the amount is dispute is over $250,000 but the final judgment or award is less than 200,000 (80%), the Court is likely to order that the plaintiff pay part of the defendant’s costs.; the actual sum still needs to be confirmed.

elringtons can assist you in deciding what the best course of action to resolve your matter is, taking into account the court process and procedures, time frames and results.

For advice, please contact:

Matthew Bridger | e: mbridger@elringtons.com.au | p: 02 6206 1300 http://elringtons.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Specialist-accreditaion.jpg