COVID-19: the tip of face-to-face hearings? – Litigation, mediation and arbitration


COVID-19: the end of face-to-face hearings?

February 20, 2021

Corrs Chambers Westgarth

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By March 2020, the impact of COVID-19 on litigation at various levels of courts in Australia was becoming apparent, and it appears that 2021 could remain a similarly troubled year for the courts, with a potential number of unforeseen circuit breaker bans.

Although it has been around 12 months since the pandemic began, the courts are still grappling with its effects.

As a result, there is growing case law addressing the Australian courts’ approach, especially when it comes to adjournment of face-to-face hearings.

This insight takes into account the general principles applied by the courts as they address the impact of COVID-19 on the cases ahead and whether recent changes are likely to become a permanent feature of the judicial system.

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The content of this article is intended to provide general guidance on the subject. A professional should be obtained about your particular circumstances.

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