Summary Procedure Case Management

Following detailed consultation with the profession, on 17 March 2014 Chief Magistrate Lowndes issued Practice Direction No. 4 of 2014 to expedite and  facilitate the effective case management of summary matters. Key features of the procedures are improved prosecution disclosure (by way of a requirement to serve a ‘preliminary brief’ at an early stage of proceedings); and case conferencing to encourage parties to identify and narrow issues in contention and, where possible, settle matters in a timely manner. These new procedures apply only in the Darwin Court of Summary Jurisdiction, at least for the time being.