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Cyclone forces court closures

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In response to warnings from the Bureau of Meteorology about Cyclone Kirrily, the offices of the Townsville Supreme Court Registry and District Court Registry will be closed from 1pm to 4.30pm tomorrow.

District Court Practice Direction 1 of 2024 and Supreme Court of Queensland Practice Direction 3 of 2024 were issued today for Thursday, 25 January.

The Magistrates Courts has also issued Practice Direction No. 2 of 2024.

The Townsville, Mackay, Proserpine and Bowen Magistrates Courts Registries will also be closed from 1pm to 4.30pm on Thursday, 25 January.

Townsville Magistrates Court will be open to hear urgent matters only.

All other matters will be adjourned and a Notice of Adjournment sent to parties.

Given the closure of affected court registries, parties will be unable to file any Applications for Protection Orders, including via electronic means. 

All remaining Supreme, District and Magistrates Courts will be open.

The Queensland Law Society (QLS) is urging practitioners to be vigilant in extreme weather events such as this week’s cyclone.

The QLS Ethics and Practice Centre would like to remind practitioners of the following resources which aid in ensuring practices are prepared:

Queensland practitioners are also asked to consider the following:

  1. Ensure that your back-ups (re: files) are up to date and a copy is in a safe, accessible location.
  2. Check that your safe custody documents (if any) are in a place that will not be affected by floods etc.
  3. Secure remote access for you and your staff (WFH)
  4. Consider an off-line version of your key dates calendar if power / internet is down.

Proctor will publish updates on court operations and closures in the event of an emergency.

As QLS members, practitioners also have access to Converge International Telehealth/critical incident support or crisis counselling. To access this service call 1300 687 327 or Rapid Response / Critical Incident – Converge International.

For Lexon-insured firms, Lexon also has an Extreme Events – Law Practice Disruption Guide.

If assistance is required or you would like to discuss how to prepare your practice in the event of an emergency, please contact the QLS Ethics and Practice Centre via ethics@qls.com.au or 3842 5843.

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