Residential development appeals: at the first directions hearing

Venue, date and time

The first directions hearing will usually be held around 21 days after the date the application was filed. It will be conducted before the registrar of the Court in a court at the Court’s building at 225 Macquarie Street, Sydney. The location of the Court and the precise time of the day when the directions hearing will occur will be shown on the Court Lists posted on a notice board in the foyer of the court’s building and on the court’s website under Court Lists  in the afternoon of the day before the directions hearing.  The Sydney Morning Herald may also (but does not always) publish the Court Lists on the morning of the date set for the directions hearing.

Completed information sheets

The applicant and consent authority are to hand to the Court at the first directions hearing their completed information sheets (paragraph 31 of the Practice Note). These sheets assist the registrar to make directions that are appropriate to the particular circumstances of the matter and the particular parties.

Completed minute of proposed directions

The applicant and consent authority are to hand to the Court at the first directions hearing an agreed or their own versions of a minute of the directions they propose the Court should make to prepare the matter and facilitate the just, quick and cheap resolution of the appeal (paragraphs 32, 33 and 34 of the Practice Note).

Fixing the conciliation conference and hearing

Residential development appeals are required to be fixed for a conciliation conference and hearing under s 34AA(2) of the Court Act.

The registrar will fix the date of the conciliation conference and hearing at the first directions hearing. The practice is to fix two consecutive working days. This allows time for both the conciliation conference as well as the hearing which is required to commence immediately after the conciliation if no agreement has been reached between the parties.

The date of the conciliation conference and hearing will usually be not more than 6 weeks after the date of the first directions hearing.

Generally, the Court will direct that the conciliation conference and hearing will commence at 9.30 am on the site of the residential development. If the parties consider this venue would be inappropriate, they are to inform the Court at the first directions hearing. The Court can direct that a different venue be used, such as a court in the Court’s building.

Making and recording directions

The registrar will make directions, generally in accordance with the usual directions at the first directions hearing, including fixing the date, time and venue of the conciliation conference and hearing. The registrar will state the directions orally.  It is important that the parties record the directions the registrar makes. A written copy of the directions made is not usually sent to the parties.

 

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