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Civil justice system regresses (1)

Civil justice system regresses (1)

The civil justice systems of New South Wales and Victoria have become far more inefficient in the last 12 months, according to the latest Productivity Commission report.

According to the report, which was released today (31 January), the clearance indicators for civil matters in the New South Wales Supreme Court and Federal Court dropped from a score of 121.7 in 2009/10 to 88.9 in 2010/11. In Victoria, the score fell from 113.3 in 2009/10 to 88.0 in 2010/11.

A score greater than 100 indicates there were more lodgments than finalisations in the specified year, while a score under 100 indicates there were more finalisations than lodgments in the specified year.

South Australia, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Tasmania also added to their backlog of civil matters in the superior courts, while Queensland jumped ahead in the efficiency stakes, climbing from a score of 94.9 in 2009/10 to 128.5 in 2010/11. The ACT continued its good run, jumping from 115.9 in 2009/10 to 127.4 in 2010/11.

The overall clearance score for civil matters in the Supreme and Federal Courts dropped from 108.9 in 2009/10 to 97.4 in 2010/11.

Despite Victoria’s poor performance in civil matters, the state managed to significantly improve its clearance score in the criminal jurisdiction.

In 2009/10, Victoria scored 96.8 in Supreme Court matters, while in 2010/11 the score was a whopping 150.2. New South Wales’ score was nowhere near as dramatic, jumping from 92.9 in 2009/10 to 96.9 in 2010/11.

Queensland’s and Western Australia’s scores remained fairly static, with both states scoring 96.6 in 2010/11 (up from 93.9 and 95.4 respectively), while Tasmania and the ACT also improved their clearance scores, jumping from 95.7 to 100.6 and 81.6 to 105.8 respectively.

South Australia and the Northern Territory experienced drops in efficiency, with the former dropping from 107.1 to 96.8 and the latter from 93.6 to 86.2.

The overall clearance score for criminal matters in the Supreme Courts has jumped from 94.4 on 2009/10 to 102 in 2010/11

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