Courts across Victoria will right away start off tests digital courtroom technological know-how right after in-person hearings and trials were being suspended thanks to the rapidly escalating coronavirus pandemic.
Supreme Courtroom chief justice Anne Ferguson announced options for the e-court docket pilots on Friday, whilst postponing committal hearings across the state for at the very least the next seven months.
All new jury trials in the Supreme Courtroom and County Courtroom, as effectively as the empanelling of jurors, have previously been suspended right until more observe in a bid to comprise the unfold of COVID-19.
“In each the legal and civil courts, we are rapidly shifting to a posture where by appearances will be managed as a result of the digital and electronic ecosystem,” Ferguson stated.
“Not all courts have the complex functionality however, but appreciable work is underway to make that as soon as possible.”
Ferguson stated the pilots would kick off “immediately” in Victorian courts and the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal to be certain judges, lawyers and defendants can hyperlink-up remotely.
The technological know-how would then be “scaled up to satisfy the modifying demands of the sector”, even though she acknowledged that this was even now some time away.
“We are not there however. Nor do we have all the responses,” she stated.
“The scenario is fluid and shifting quickly and whilst we cannot forecast what may possibly happen with COVID-19 in the rapid potential we will go on to transfer to a extra agile and flexible ecosystem.
The Supreme Courtroom has been contacted for more info about the trials, which include which video clip conferencing software program will be tested.
As at Friday, Victoria had the second greatest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Australia right after NSW (307) with 121.