Land and Environment Court

​​​​​​​​​Welcome to the website of the NSW Land and Environment Court.

The Land and Environment Court hears environmental, development, building and planning disputes. Read more.

Latest News

Telephone and Audio Visual Link Conferencing Protocol

The Court has issued a Protocol for using audio link and audio visual link at the Land and Environment Court. Link to the Protocol.

Changes in Registry filing procedures

From Tuesday 24 March 2020, the counter of the LEC Registry will not be personally attended by Registry staff. All documents should be filed by Online Registry, DX, post or courier, as previously advised. If filing of hard copy documents is necessary, a box has been provided in the public foyer near the counter for filing documents. The box will be regularly cleared and the documents processed by Registry staff and the processed documents returned to the parties.

24 March 2020

COVID-19 Further Restrictions

The Court has reviewed the current health advice regarding social distancing with the aim of minimising personal attendances at Court listings (including hearings, conciliations, mediations and onsite views). The situation is changing rapidly. In the light of current health advice the Court now directs that all listings proceed by telephone or AVL.

The Court is equipped to utilise Online Court, Online Registry and telephone conferencing.

The unique circumstances of the Court's jurisdiction require a specific approach on a case by case basis to determine if it is feasible to deal with the matter via telephone or AVL. If not, it is likely to be postponed.

The Court will implement a review of all matters listed from 30 March 2020 to 30 June 2020. Each matter will be listed for a telephone directions hearing to consider whether the listing can be conducted via telephone or other suitable arrangements are able to be made.

If it is determined that the matter cannot proceed, the listing date will be vacated and the matter will be listed for further directions.  

In relation to the matters listed from Tuesday 24 March 2020 to 27 March 2020 the parties will be contacted by the Court on Monday 23 March 2020 to discuss the management of the particular listing.

The COVID-19 Pandemic Arrangements Policy will be amended in the near future to reflect the need to consider whether matters can proceed by telephone or AVL.

Acting Chief Judge

24 March 2020

New COVID-19 Pandemic Arrangements Policy

The Court will be implementing the following procedures from Monday, 23 March 2020. Apart from parties being directed to use Online Court, Online Registry and teleconference facilities and avoid attendance in person, wherever practicable, the Court requires compliance with the new COVID-19 Pandemic Arrangements Policy.

The Court continues to monitor the health advice from the Australian Government and NSW Government in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19). In adopting this Policy, the Court is endeavouring both to protect the health and safety of all court users and to maintain access to justice and essential court services. If the measures in this Policy are not adopted, and embraced by the parties and practitioners, the only alternative is to cease all conciliations, mediations and hearings in the Court. This will place even greater hardship on parties than accommodating the restrictive rules of procedure for conciliations, mediations and hearings at this time.

20 March 2020

New filing arrangements at the Land and Environment Court

In order to maintain the practice of social distancing recommended by NSW Health, the Court is strengthening its new arrangements for the filing of documents advised on the website.

The following sign has now been placed on the doors to the Registry on level 4 and the arrangements are to take effect immediately.

If you are a legally represented party seeking to file a document, you must file your documents by one of the following means:

  • Online Registry
  • DX 264 Sydney
  • posted to Land and Environment Court, GPO Box 3565, Sydney NSW 2001
  • by courier delivered to the Court at Level 4, 225 Macquarie Street, Sydney.

Filed copies of your documents will be returned to you once processed by the Court together with any relevant invoice.

If you are not legally represented or you are not seeking to file a document, please call the Court on 9113 8200 and a member of Registry staff will be able to assist you further.

19 March 2020

Application to the Court where self-isolation necessary

The Australian and NSW government require self-isolation to limit the spread of COVID-19 in various circumstances. Anyone required to self-isolate must not attend the Court building or any Court proceedings wherever conducted.

The Court will consider any application to vacate hearing or conciliation dates or other listings where a legal representative or other person involved in Court proceedings or a party is obliged to self-isolate. Application should be made by Online Court and must include reasons and propose dates for a rescheduled listing.

Minimising the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) update 18 March 2020

The WHO has declared the spread of COVID-19 a pandemic. The Court continues to monitor NSW Health announcements and health advice relating to (COVID-19) on a daily basis and make changes to minimise risk to the court members, staff and court users.

The Court has implemented measures to reduce the need for personal attendance by parties and keep the Court operational as far as possible.

Effective immediately:  

  • Parties in Classes 1, 2 (excluding tree dispute applications), 3, 4 and 8 are required to use Online Registry and Online Court whenever available.
  • Both Online Court and Online Registry will be operating 24 hours a day as normal and parties must avail themselves of these resources.
  • Applications, appeals, notices of motion and subpoenas must be filed by Online Registry where access is available.
  • Online Court is to be used to seek directions (including listing matters for conciliation conferences, mediations and hearings) and also access orders for subpoenas and notices to produce.
  • Parties in Class 2 tree dispute applications and Class 5, 6 and 7 criminal proceedings and appeals must seek directions and access orders for subpoenas and notices to produce using the lecourt@justice.nsw.gov.au email address.

As the Court has telephone link services available, the Court requires listing of matters for directions or other orders by telephone whenever possible.

The Court will continue to run a daily Registrar's list and the Friday Judge lists. These should be conducted remotely. Matters including procedural and contested matters must be dealt with on the papers and by telephone as far as possible.

The Court is reviewing all matters including:  conciliation conferences on a case by case basis to maximise the use of telephone facilities and AVL including for regional matters. 

18 March 2020

Duty Lawyer Scheme

A duty lawyer scheme has been operating in the Land and Environment Court since April 2018.

The scheme is the result of a collaboration between the EPLA, the EDO, NSW Law Society Young Lawyers Environment and Planning Committee, Macquarie University Law School and practitioners from the Court Users Group.

The scheme is aimed at assisting self-represented litigants who are respondents in Classes 4 (except judicial review), 5, 6 and 7 of the Court's jurisdiction.

Every Friday between 9am and 12 noon a duty lawyer will be available by telephone to provide preliminary advice to self-represented litigants with a view to guiding them through the Court process and referring them to appropriate services. Read more or contact the registry on 9113 8200 to make a booking.

13 March 2020

Minimising the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Court is carefully monitoring the Commonwealth and State Governments' announcements and health advice relating to coronavirus (COVID-19).

In an endeavour to contain its effects and keep the Court operational as much as possible, parties in Classes 1, 2 (excluding tree dispute applications), 3, 4 and 8 are encouraged to use Online Registry and Online Court. Both Online Court and Online Registry will be operating 24 hours a day as normal and parties should avail themselves of these resources as much as possible.

Applications, appeals, notice of motion and subpoenas can continue to be filed by Online Registry. Online Court can be used to seek directions (including listing matters for conciliation conferences, mediations and hearings) and also access orders for subpoenas and notices to produce.

Parties in Class 2 tree dispute applications and Class 5, 6 and 7 criminal proceedings and appeals are encouraged to continue to seek directions and also access orders for subpoenas and notices to produce using the lecourt@justice.nsw.gov.au email address.

The Court also has telephone link services available and encourages the parties to seek to have matters listed for directions or mention by telephone if they would prefer.

The Court will continue to run a daily Registrar's list and the Friday Judge lists, however these small measures will minimise the need for parties to come to Court in the near future.

Recent New​s​

14 February 2020

Save the date - Land and Environment Court's 40th Anniversary

The Chief Judge invites you to save the date of 31 August 2020 to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Land and Environment Court of NSW. During the day of 31 August 2020, the Court will be hosting a one day seminar at Parliament House. That evening there will also be a gala dinner in the Strangers' Dining Room.

25 November 2019

Volume 11 Issue 3 (October 2019) of the Court's Judicial Newsletter is now available.

22 October 2019

Court Vacation 2019-2020

The Judges' fixed vacation begins on 23 December 2019 and the first day of term in 2020 will be Monday, 3 February 2020.

4 September 2019

New Judge Announced

Attorney General Mark Speakman SC today announced the appointment of barrister Sandra Duggan SC as a judge of the Land and Environment Court. View the media release. Ms Duggan SC will be sworn in on 10 September 2019 at 9am in the Banco Court, Law Courts Building.

4 September 2019

New Acting Commissioner Appointments

The Chief Judge is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr Philip Clay SC and Ms Maureen Peatman as Acting Commissioners of the Court for the period commencing 4 September 2019 and expiring on 3 September 2020.


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