New procedural rules have been published for the Land Court of Queensland.
- starting proceedings
- compliance with rules, orders and directions of the court, including orders restricting access to a document in a proceeding
- the filing of a statement of facts and issues by each party to a proceeding
- applications by a party for the disclosure of documents by another party to the proceeding
- the establishment of the Land Court ADR panel consisting of appropriately qualified persons (convenors), and the power of the court to refer matters to ADR by a convenor
- the giving of evidence by parties and lay witnesses
- expert evidence, including the making of orders about the use of expert evidence, duties of experts, obligations of parties calling experts, expert reports, meetings of experts, the preparation of joint reports, and the appointment of convenors to manage the expert evidence process
- ending proceedings early, including failure to prosecute proceedings, discontinuance and withdrawal
- hearings, including the conduct of hearings by electronic communication, when the court may dispense with an oral hearing, and the joint preparation of a list of issues in dispute by the parties
- the giving of judgments and orders by the court, including costs orders against a party’s lawyer or agent where another party incurs costs because of the lawyer’s or agent’s delay, misconduct or negligence
- the matters a judicial registrar may hear and decide, and when those matters may be removed or referred to the court for decision
- appeals to the Land Appeal Court
- the electronic filing, giving, making or issuing of documents and the power of the registrar to issue notices.
The new Rules also provide for the application of rules to recommendatory matters such as mining objection hearings, where the court is performing an administrative rather than a judicial function.
The new Rules have been drafted to be broadly consistent with the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 (UCPR). Where the new Rules do not provide for a matter, the provisions of the UCPR apply in relation to the matter with necessary changes.