Complaints and Feedback
The ACT Courts and Tribunal (ACTCT) aims to:
- provide high quality court and tribunal registry services;
- have well trained staff to provide accurate and timely information to court and tribunal users in a professional manner;
- encourage and capture feedback to support a culture of continuous improvement in the workplace; and
- investigate and respond to complaints in an impartial and fair manner.
The following information is to assist court and tribunal users and members of the community to provide feedback or make a complaint about the staff, services or facilities of the ACTCT.
Complaints regarding the staff, services or facilities of the ACTCT will be dealt with in accordance with our Complaints and Feedback Policy.
Complaints against judicial officers and legal practitioners
There are separate processes to make complaints against judicial officers, tribunal members and legal practitioners, or appeal a decision of a court or tribunal. The Complaints and Feedback Policy outlines these separate processes.
On 1 February 2017 the Judicial Council was established to consider complaints about the conduct of judicial officers. Further information about the ACT Judicial Council is available at www.actjudicialcouncil.org.au or by contacting (02) 6276 0193 or emailing Principal.Officer@actjudicialcouncil.org.au.
If the complaint is about a Court Registrar carrying out judicial functions, then the complaint should be sent to the Head of Jurisdiction relevant to the function ie Chief Justice of the ACT Supreme Court or Chief Magistrate of the ACT Magistrates Court.
Complaints concerning the actions of a Barrister should be made to the ACT Bar Association and complaints concerning Solicitors should be made to the Law Society of the ACT.
How to make a complaint or provide feedback about the Court and Tribunal Administration
You may make complaint or provide feedback directly at an Enquiry Counter. If the staff member is unable to deal with your complaint they will refer you to an appropriate staff member or manager. You may also lodge your complaint by telephoning (02) 6207 1054. If your complaint is complex, you may be asked to put your complaint in writing. A form is available as a guide from the enquiry counter and is attached to the Complaints and Feedback Factsheet. Written complaints or feedback can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or sent to:
The Principal Registrar
ACT Courts and Tribunal
GPO Box 370
Canberra ACT 2601
What to include in your complaint or feedback
When writing or emailing the ACTCT please include the following information:
- the date;
- your full name and address;
- if you are writing about a case you were a party to, the case number;
- full details of the incident or incidents you are writing about, and
- what you are seeking as an outcome.
If you have previously complained about the matter, please state when and how you made the complaint.
How your complaint will be handled
Written complaints will be acknowledged within 5 business days and details provided of a person to contact about the progress of your complaint. An appropriate member of the ACTCT staff will be directed to investigate your complaint and provide you with a response within 21 days. If your complaint cannot be finalised within 21 days, you will be advised of the reason for the ACTCT being unable to provide you with a response within that time and an indication when you will receive a response.
The formal response sent to you will set out the writer’s understanding of your complaint, the facts and issues relating to your complaint and any action taken by the court registry in response to your complaint. If the service you received did not meet the standard required of the ACTCT you will receive an apology. If no action is to be taken in relation to your complaint you will receive an explanation why no further action is to be taken.
A telephone interpreter service is available by telephoning 131 450.
If you are not satisfied with the way your complaint was handled
If you are dissatisfied with the response to your complaint you may request that the matter be reviewed. Where your complaint was dealt with by somebody other than the Principal Registrar you may request the Principal Registrar to review the matter.
If the Principal Registrar dealt with your original complaint you may request the Justice and Community Safety Directorate to review your complaint.
Your complaint or feedback will be treated confidentially. However, your complaint and feedback will be subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1989, the Territory Records Act 2002and the Commonwealth Privacy Act 1988. Those three Acts concern the disclosure of information contained in court and tribunal files and records.
Complaint handling outside the Courts and Tribunal
The ACTCT have a commitment to resolving complaints made to it fairly and sensitively. However, if you are not satisfied after we have responded to your complaint you may write to your local member of the Legislative Assembly or contact the Ombudsman’s Office on 1300 362 072.