Work Allocation in Australian Courts: Court Staff and the Judiciary

Anne Wallace, Kathy Mack and Sharyn Roach Anleu, ‘Work Allocation in Australian Courts: Court Staff and the Judiciary’ (2014) 36(4) Sydney Law Review 669

26 Pages Posted: 25 Apr 2015

See all articles by Anne Wallace

Anne Wallace

La Trobe Law School

Kathy Mack

Flinders University - School of Law

Sharyn Roach Anleu

Flinders University - Department of Sociology

Date Written: 2014

Abstract

This article examines the statutory basis of judicial workload allocation, before turning to empirical research findings to investigate the functions performed by the judiciary and the court staff in allocating work. The ultimate responsibility for allocating work in a court rests with the chief judicial officer, either as a specific statutory responsibility or as part of their general responsibility to manage the court. In practice, other judicial officers and court personnel are involved in work allocation. This article reports on findings from extensive empirical research examining the processes of work organisation in Australian courts. This research has identified the centrality of court officials, as well as the responsible judicial officer, in allocating work. This may include allocating cases to courts or lists; assigning judicial officers to courts or lists; or, in some circumstances, allocating specific cases to judicial officers. This process of workload allocation requires these court officials to exercise considerable skill in balancing key principles and values of judicial work organisation, including efficiency, fairness, neutral case allocation, and judicial independence.

Keywords: courts; judiciary

Suggested Citation

Wallace, Anne and Mack, Kathy and Roach Anleu, Sharyn, Work Allocation in Australian Courts: Court Staff and the Judiciary (2014). Anne Wallace, Kathy Mack and Sharyn Roach Anleu, ‘Work Allocation in Australian Courts: Court Staff and the Judiciary’ (2014) 36(4) Sydney Law Review 669. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2598414

Anne Wallace (Contact Author)

La Trobe Law School ( email )

La Trobe University
Bundoora, VIC 3083 3142
Australia

Kathy Mack

Flinders University - School of Law ( email )

Adelaide S.A. 5001
Australia
+08 8201 3627 (Phone)

Sharyn Roach Anleu

Flinders University - Department of Sociology ( email )

Adelaide, S.A, 5001
Australia
+61 8 8201 2122 (Phone)
+61 8 8201 3521 (Fax)

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