Land and Environment Court of NSW

2018 News

Acting Commissioner Julie Bindon Appointment

21 December 2018

The Chief Judge is pleased to announce the appointment of Ms Julie Bindon as an Acting Commissioner of the Court for the period commencing 21 December 2018 and expiring on 25 February 2020.

Ms Bindon is an experienced planner with over 35 years' experience. Ms Bindon holds a Bachelor of Town Planning (University of Auckland) and Postgraduate Diploma of Land Economy (University of Sydney). She is a Fellow of the Planning Institute of Australia and Honorary Fellow of the Australian Property Institute. She is a certified Practising Planner.

Ms Bindon founded and chaired JBA Urban Planning Consultants Pty Ltd, a leading consultant planning firm, before the firm's merger to form Ethos Urban Pty Ltd, where she was a Director. Ms Bindon played a major role in the planning of significant public and private projects. She has served on numerous professional and governments institutions and committees, including the Planning Institute of Australia, NSW Heritage Council and Western Sydney Parkland Trust.

New Class 2 - Tree Applications Practice Note

22 November 2018

The Practice Note – Class 2 Tree Applications dated 13 May 2014 has been replaced with a new Practice Note (PDF , 245.3 KB) that adds a paragraph to direction 10 of the Usual Directions found in Schedule A (DOC , 59.0 KB). Direction 10 now reads:

“10. The respondent is to file with the Court and serve a copy on the applicant, the local council and the Heritage Council of NSW, by 4.30pm on ……………………………, any order pursuant to s 9 and/or s 14D of the Trees (Disputes Between Neighbours) Act 2006 or pursuant to s 13A of the Dividing Fences Act 1991 which the respondent proposes as an alternative to or in addition to the orders sought by the applicant. If the respondent wishes to retain the tree, the respondent’s proposed order should include any solution to prevent the tree causing damage to the applicant’s property, including any engineering or construction solution, which would enable the tree to be retained;”

The new Practice Note commences on 1 December 2018.

Judicial Newsletter

20 November 2018

Volume 10 Issue 3 (PDF , 829.3 KB) (October 2018) of the Court's Judicial Newsletter is now available.

Court Vacation 2018-2019

3 October 2018

The Judges' fixed vacation begins on 17 December 2018 and the first day of term in 2019 will be Tuesday, 29 January 2019.

A Duty Judge will be available during the fixed vacation for urgent matters.

Matters may be listed for s 34 conferences, mediations and hearings before Commissioners throughout the fixed vacation except for the public holidays and the public service holiday on Thursday, 27 December 2018.

The final Registrar's directions hearing list for 2018 will be on Wednesday, 19 December 2018. The Registrar's directions hearing list will resume on Monday, 21 January 2019.

Both Online Registry and Online Court will be operating 24 hours a day as normal during the vacation period and parties are encouraged to avail themselves of these resources. Applications, appeals, notices of motion and subpoenas can continue to be filed by Online Registry. Online Court can continue to seek directions and also access orders for subpoenas and notices to produce throughout the vacation.

Information on Registry opening hours over the Xmas break is available here. (PDF , 221.8 KB)

Commissioner Timothy Horton Appointment

27 September 2018

The Chief Judge is pleased to announce the appointment of a new Commissioner to the Court.

Mr Timothy Horton has been appointed a Commissioner of the Court from 5 November 2018 for a period of 7 years.

Mr Horton is an experienced architect with over 20 years' applied experience in the fields of architecture, landscape architecture, urban design and planning. Mr Horton holds a Bachelor of Architecture (Honours) (University of Sydney) and a Bachelor of Applied Science in Environmental Design (University of Canberra). He is a registered architect and Associate Member of the Royal Australian Institute of Architects. He is formerly the Registrar of the NSW Architects Registration Board. Mr Horton has delivered public architecture, commercial architecture and interior architecture projects throughout Australia. He has won numerous national and state architectural and urban design awards for his work. He served as the Commissioner for Integrated Design in South Australia providing expert strategic advice to the State government on good urban design and a sustainable built environment. He has served at the highest levels of the architecture profession, including being Chapter President and then National Director of the Royal Australian Institute of Architects, and the Chair of various state Practice Committees. He has served as a juror for awards for architecture, planning, urban design and sustainability.

ADR Group of the Year Award

21 August 2018

The Chief Judge is pleased to announce that the Land and Environment Court of NSW has been awarded “Courts and Tribunals – ADR Group of the Year” at the prestigious Australian Disputes Centre ADR Awards 2018.

The Australian Disputes Centre was first established in 1986 by the then NSW Attorney General, the Honourable Justice Terry Sheahan and the Honourable Sir Laurence Street, Chief Justice of the NSW Supreme Court,  and is now dedicated to advancing alternative dispute resolution across Australia and internationally to deliver benefits of world class alternative dispute resolution to businesses, professionals, governments and communities.

This award from the Australian Disputes Centre recognises the wide range of reforms that have been undertaken by the Court so as to be able to provide a range of dispute resolution processes to parties which it matches to the individual dispute and disputants.

This approach is unique in NSW to the Land and Environment Court.

Alternative dispute resolution procedures have now been embedded in the Court’s practices, processes and procedures and this has resulted in a shift of the culture of the Court from being highly litigious and adversarial to conciliatory.

The outstanding success of the Land and Environment Court’s alternative dispute resolution processes, the value it provide to the community and the benefits to the parties of providing individualised justice are demonstrated by the year on year increase in the number of matters that continue to be filed in the Court and number of matter that are conciliated and resolved prior to any hearing.

The Court is proud to receive this award and to have its leadership in the practice of alternative dispute resolution recognised.

Judicial Newsletter

1 August 2018

Volume 10 Issue 2 (PDF , 718.9 KB) (June 2018) of the Court's Judicial Newsletter is now available.

Court Fee Increase

28 June 2018

Effective 1 July 2018 the Court's fees will increase by 2%, please see the fee schedule.

Annual Review 2017

14 May 2018

The Court's Annual Review (PDF , 1.3 MB) for 2017 is now available.

AustLII Metrics and statistics for 2017

9 April 2018

As part of the implementation of the International Framework for Court Excellence, the Court commissioned a project with AustLII to use its databases to generate metrics and statistics concerning the Court. The results to the end of 2017 are available here.

New Practice Notes and Policies

29 March 2018

The Practice Note – Class 1 Development Appeals (PDF , 150.9 KB)Practice Note – Class 1 Residential Development Appeals (PDF , 341.9 KB) and Practice Note – Classes 1, 2 and 3 Miscellaneous Appeals (PDF , 118.7 KB) have been remade to refer to the new numbering of the statutory provisions in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979. The Practice Notes commence on 3 April 2018.

The Site Inspections Policy (PDF , 64.8 KB) and Identity Theft Prevention and Anonymisation Policy (PDF , 535.2 KB) have also been remade to refer to the new statutory provisions in theEnvironmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

The Practice Note – Class 5 Proceedings (PDF , 91.4 KB) has been amended and remade to:

  • require notification to the Court of any proposed restorative justice process to be undertaken or proposed order for carrying out a restorative justice activity;
  • require the prosecutor to give to the defendant notice and details of any proposed order in connection with the offence (such as orders under Part 8.3 of the Protection of the Environment Operation Act 1997) if the offence is proved; and
  • clarify the procedure for providing to the Court submissions for trials, sentencing hearings and notices of motion. 

Judicial Newsletter

16 March 2018

Volume 10 Issue 1 (PDF , 506.4 KB) (February 2018) of the Court's Judicial Newsletter is now available.

Pilot Duty Lawyer Scheme

8 March 2018

A duty lawyer scheme will be trialled in the Land and Environment Court for a 6 month period commencing 6 April 2018.

The pilot scheme is the result of a collaboration between the EPLA, the EDO, NSW Law Society Young Lawyers Environment and Planning Committee, Macquarie University Law School and practitioners from the Court Users Group.

The pilot scheme is aimed at assisting self-represented litigants in Classes 4 and 5 of the Court's jurisdiction. If it proves successful it may be broadened to other Classes or types of proceedings in the Court.

A duty lawyer will be available on Level 4 between 9am and 12 noon each Friday to provide preliminary advice to self-represented litigants with a view to guiding them through the Court process and referring them to appropriate services.

Last updated:

08 May 2023

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