​NSW courts continue to lead the nation

Issued: 29 January 2014
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NSW Local Courts have been the most efficient in the nation for the sixth year running, Attorney General Greg Smith SC said today.

"I am delighted that NSW Local Courts and Children's Courts have again had the lowest backlog for criminal and civil matters in Australia," Mr Smith said.

"I congratulate the court and the Chief Magistrate on this exceptional efficiency, and thank all magistrates for their continued efforts to deliver justice swiftly."

The Productivity Commission's Report on Government Services 2014 found 2.4 per cent of Local Court criminal matters and just 0.4 per cent of civil matters were older than 12 months.

"Our Local Court handles the largest volume of civil and criminal matters in Australia and the speedy resolution of these cases is resulting in better access to justice and less expense for the parties involved," Mr Smith said.

The NSW District Court has recorded the second lowest backlog for civil and criminal cases older than 12 months in the 2012/13 financial year.

"The District Court has performed well in this category over recent years thanks to the effort of its judges and the leadership by the Chief Judge."

The Coroner's Court also remained the best performing coronial jurisdiction in Australia, by achieving a clearance rate of 111 per cent.

Clearance rates of above 100 per cent indicate courts are finalising new cases expeditiously and completing outstanding matters from previous years.

The NSW Supreme Court increased its overall clearance rate and recorded a rate of 131 per cent - the second highest in the nation.

"It is an exceptional achievement and indicative of the hard work and commitment displayed by all who have worked to make the NSW court system number one in Australia," Mr Smith said.

"The NSW Government is laying the platform for continued excellence within the justice system by building state-of-the-art facilities, such as new courthouses in Armidale, Newcastle and Coffs Harbour, and upgrading existing courts," he said.