District Court New South Wales

District Court (Sydney) Duty Registrar Service

Duty registrars can assist parties by providing information about district court procedures in civil matters and in residual jurisdiction matters. They do not give legal advice and can only help with simple procedural questions.

Duty registrars will answer queries directed to them by email at sydneycivilregistry@justice.nsw.gov.au.

How the duty registrar can help:

The duty registrar can assist with the following:

  • a request by a party to file a document notwithstanding its non-compliance with legislation and/or an approved form;
  • an application supported by affidavit by a self-represented party for leave to issue a subpoena;
  • an urgent application to extend or abridge time;
  • an application under the Civil Procedure Act 2005 to stay proceedings pending a hearing by the court on the next available court sitting day;
  • an urgent application for leave to pay a judgment debt by instalments;
  • an urgent application for substituted service;
  • a request for the urgent signing and sealing of a judgment or order;
  • an application by a party for access to documents produced pursuant to a subpoena;
  • an application by a party for leave to uplift documents that have been produced to the court pursuant to a subpoena; and
  • an application for access to a court file where leave is required.

The duty registrar may provide procedural advice in relation to proceedings that have been commenced and proceedings that are to be commenced. The duty registrar may also advise on the relevant approved form.

Procedural assistance by the duty registrar is primarily for unrepresented litigants. Lawyers are expected to have undertaken their own research before approaching the duty registrar for procedural advice.

What the duty registrar cannot do:

The duty registrar is an officer of the court and must remain impartial.

The duty registrar is not permitted to:

  • provide legal advice;
  • provide advice in relation to other courts and tribunals;
  • assist a party/person to complete a form, an application, a pleading, an affidavit, a notice of motion or any document that is to be considered by the court;
  • assist in the preparation of submissions and arguments that a party/person will put to the court; and
  • provide recommendations in relation to lawyers.

For legal advice you should consult an independent lawyer.

Last updated:

01 Aug 2020

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