The Magistrates’ Court is about to start staggered listings. It plans to predominantly list criminal or complex cases in the mornings, and traffic and less complex cases in the afternoons.
Additionally, all venues of the Court will commence sitting at 9:30 AM.
You can read about it here.
As part of this change, the Magistrates’ Court is also creating a web-based system for practitioners, prosecuting agencies and court coordinators to enter appearances and request adjournments. I guess it’s a bit like internet banking, where some of the work is pushed to the consumer, but lets them do it at a time convenient to them rather than the bank!
The system goes by the name of Electronic Filing Appearance System — EFAS. You can find it on the Court website.
The system is pretty bare-bones at the moment, and seems to assume everyone signing up here works in a solicitor’s firm. For barristers, you’ll need to dig out your Legal Services Board Registration of Solo Practice to find your ‘firm’ number. It seems too, that you chop off the leading letter and zeros…but I’m not entirely certain, because the webform provides no feedback to indicate if you’ve correctly entered data, or validly entered data. It just acknowledges your submission. I guess the folks running the system will email users to confirm it all.
The system is planned to operate from 21 February.