IN AN effort to further streamline the path of cases through the court system and reduce backlogs further, New South Wales courts are set to embrace the $48 million online court system JusticeLink.
Describing it as “the first multi-jurisdictional court computer in the world”, the NSW Attorney General John Hatzistergos said that while trials and committal hearing will continue to be held in courtrooms, simple directions and procedural matters will be able to be determined online. Prosecutors and defence lawyers will be able to type their arguments in an online bulletin board, the Judge will be alerted to their posts via email and a determination can be made in real time without the parties having to physically attend court.
Hatzistergos said that the system could also be used by firms to ‘e-file’ motions and evidence, and police the DPP and the Corrective Services Department will be able to log in and coordinate on matters such as bail and court appearances for prisoners.
The system has already been trialled in the NSW Supreme Court, where 167 hearings have been held on civil matters, and it will be introduced into the District Court on 11 February. Within 12 months, it is expected that JusticeLink will be operational is every criminal and civil court in NSW.