The Civil Procedure Act willbe proclaimed on 1 January 2011. It will have a significant impact on litigators, both solicitors and counsel, approach and conduct litigation in Victorian Courts and Tribunals.
I will be providing occasional posts on the operation of the Act over the next 6 weeks. I have included the second reading speech in its entirety below.
This post focuses on section 1 of the Act. For practitioners the relevant provisons are section 1(2) is the most relevant provision. At least in the early stages of this process these provisions will be important in applying the rules of procedure.
(1) The main purposes of this Act are—
(a) to reform and modernise the laws, practice, procedure and processes relating to the resolution of civil disputes which may lead to civil proceedings and to civil proceedings in the Supreme Court, the County Court and the Magistrates’ Court and provide for uniformity;
(b) to simplify the language relating to civil procedure;
(c) to provide for an overarching purpose in relation to the conduct of civil proceedings to facilitate the just, efficient, timely and cost-effective resolution of the real issues in dispute;
(d) to amend various Acts in relation to the conduct of civil proceedings to reflect the new procedures.
(2) Without limiting subsection (1), this Act provides for—
(a) overarching obligations for participants in civil proceedings to improve standards of conduct in litigation;
(b) the facilitation of the resolution of disputes before civil proceedings are commenced;
(c) the enhancement of case management powers of the courts, including in relation to discovery;
(d) further enhancement of appropriate dispute resolution processes;
(e) reform of the law relating to summary judgment;
(f) clarifying sanctions available to courts in relation to contravention of discovery obligations.
The explanatory memorandum provides:
This Chapter sets out the purpose of the Bill, when the Bill commences,
definitions for terms used and the application of the Bill.
Clause 1 provides Read the rest of this entry »