Family Court of Australia
The Family An independent body that hears legal claims brought by parties and decides between them. Serious cases are heard by a judge and jury, or just a judge. Less-serious cases are heard by a magistrate. deals with cases under the Family Law A written law made by parliament. Also called an ‘Act of parliament’, ‘statute’ or legislation. 1975 (Cth). A decision of a single Family Court judge can be appealed to the full Family Court (i.e. three Family Court judges). A decision by the full Family Court can be appealed to the High Court. For contact details, see ‘Contacts’ at the end of this chapter. Also, visit the Family Court’s website at www.familycourt.gov.au.
Federal Circuit Court of Australia
The Federal Circuit Court (formerly called the Federal Magistrates Court) was established as a separate court to deal with some cases that previously went to the Family Court or Federal Court. This court can hear a range of less complex family law matters and has the same child support powers as the Family Court. Proceedings can be transferred between the Federal Circuit Court and the Family Court and there is a right of The review of the decision of a lower court by a higher court. If an appeal is successful, the higher court can change the lower court’s decision. to the Family Court in some matters. The The authority of a court or tribunal to hear matters brought before it, based on some factor such as area or law, amount of money claimed, or geographic area. of the Federal Circuit Court includes reviewing some administrative decisions, and industrial, migration and Under the Australian Consumer Law, a person who buys goods or services for less than $40 000 or for personal or home use. matters. For contact details, see ‘Contacts’ at the end of this chapter. Also, visit the Federal Circuit Court’s website at www.federalcircuitcourt.gov.au.
Federal Court of Australia
Although state Supreme Courts can hear matters involving Commonwealth law (i.e. they have federal jurisdiction), the Federal Court can also hear these cases. In some circumstances, the Federal Court can also hear state matters.
The Federal Court’s business includes industrial disputes, actions under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) and When a debtor who cannot pay their debts has their money and property taken over and managed by a trustee who uses it to pay back creditors. The debtor is then called a bankrupt. matters. The Federal Court also hears appeals of decisions of the Commonwealth Administrative Appeals A body set up to hear and decide disputes, usually with less formality and less strict rules of evidence than in a court proceeding..
A decision of a single Federal Court judge can be appealed to the full Federal Court (i.e. three Federal Court judges). A decision by the full Federal Court can be appealed to the High Court.
For contact details, see ‘Contacts’ at the end of this chapter. Also, visit the Federal Court’s website at www.fedcourt.gov.au.
High Court of Australia
The High Court is the highest court in Australia. Appeals may be made to it from state Supreme Courts, although generally the High Court gives leave to appeal only when important points of law need to be decided. Some matters may be heard directly by it (e.g. constitutional matters).
The High Court’s decisions are binding on all states, so a decision on a case appealed from a Victorian Supreme Court to the High Court A document that sets out what a person wants to happen to their money and other property after they die. (usually) result in a decision by the High Court that is binding on all other state courts.
For contact details, see ‘Contacts’ at the end of this chapter. Also, visit the High Court’s website at www.hcourt.gov.au.