The Local Court process changes depending on whether you decide to plead guilty or not-guilty.
Depending on the nature of the matter, on the first occasion the matter is in Court, Orders may be made for the prosecution to serve us with a Brief of Evidence. If no such Order is made (such as if the matter is a simple one) then the plea of not-guilty will be made and a hearing date will be set there and then.
Otherwise, Order for Service of the Brief of evidence will be made, and the matter will be adjourned for six weeks for us to reply to the Brief. At the reply date, the plea of not-guilty will be confirmed.
The matter will then be listed for a Hearing date.
During that time we will prepare for the hearing. At the Final Hearing the matter is finalised.
The first time the matter is in Court it should be determined whether the matter can be finalised. If so, submissions will be made and the matter will be heard and finalised on that day.
If the matter cannot be finalised on the first Court date (which is usually the case; such as when a diversionary program is needed like attendance at the Traffic Offfenders Program) then the matter will be adjourned for completion of program (or for example, to obtain expert reports, pre-sentence reports etc).
At the second appearance; usually the Final Hearing, submissions will be made and the matter will be heard and finalised.
For more information on the Court process, click here.