The Costs Court was established by Section 17 of the Supreme Court Act 1986 to hear and determine the assessment, settling, taxation or review of costs in the Supreme Court, County Court, Magistrates Court and Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal; as well as hear costs disputes between Legal Practitioners and their clients pursuant to Division 7 of Part 3.4 of Chapter 3 of the Legal Profession Act 2004 and Division 5 of Part 4 of the Legal Practice Act 1996. The Costs Court, as presently constituted comprises an Associate Judge designated as the Taxing Master, a Judicial Registrar and two Costs Registrars.
At present Associate contacts are:
|Associate Justice Wood
Associate : Luke Bush
|Tel 9603 9324||Fax 9603 9320|
|Judicial Registrar Gourlay
Associate Pamela Walton
|Tel 9603 9319||Fax 9603 9320|
|Costs Registrar Conidi||Tel 9603 9092||Fax 9603 9132|
|Costs Registrar Deviny||Tel 9603 9081||Fax 9603 9132|
Please refer to Court Fees
Callover dates, times and location
Matters are listed at Taxation Callover Matters are listed in order based on the date of issue. Please check the daily list. The Court does not usually authenticate orders made at Callover. Parties requiring an order to be authenticated should submit a Request to Authenticate at the Callover, or contact the Associate to Associate Justice Wood after the Callover to request an authenticated order.
Where Process is issued
Principal Registry, Level 2, 436 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne, Victoria 3000.
Communications With the Costs Court
Communications to the Court should be directed to:
- The Supreme Court Registry on 9603 9280 or 9603 9300, where communication concerns a Registry matter
- The Costs Court where the matter concerns a matter that has been listed for hearing
- email email@example.com
- Fax 9603 9132
- The Associate to the Associate Judge where the communication concerns a matter in the callover list;
- Enquiries regarding urgent applications that have not been allocated a hearing should be addressed to the Associate to the Judicial Registrar.
- Communication between the legal profession and Associates is frequently necessary for the smooth running of the Costs Court. All such communication however must be undertaken with care to ensure that the impartiality and integrity of the Court is not undermined. (See, for example, R v Fisher  VSCA 100; R v Phillips  QCA 57.
- Communications between an Associate and legal practitioners must always be open and uncontroversial. Communication by telephone should be avoided in all but purely administrative routine matters that involve no controversy. Otherwise, email correspondence is preferred with all parties included as recipients. It is the responsibility of each practitioner to disclose to all other practitioners and parties the content of any email or fax correspondence, or phone conversation, between him or herself and an Associate.
- Associates are not permitted to give legal or strategic advice and practitioners should not request such advice. Matters that practitioners may enquire about include
a. Available listing times for applications or directions;
b. Whether a summons is required or whether an application can be listed informally;
c. How material can be provided for the Court in addition to filing with Registry.
- Practitioners must ensure that Associates do not become part of the dispute between practitioners or the parties. A practitioner seeking a time for a hearing or agreement to a course of action should, except in ex parte hearings or where otherwise unavoidable, first inform the other parties before contacting an Associate. It is undesirable for one party to secure agreement from an Associate of a contested time, or contested course of action, before seeking agreement from other practitioners and other parties. The formal processes available by summons and operation of the Rules should be used if there is a risk that what a practitioner seeks from, or proposes to, an Associate may not be agreed to or may be contested.
- Matters that practitioners should avoid enquiring about include:
a. Whether it is likely an adjournment will be granted or whether an order will be made on the papers;
b. What is the timeframe within which the Costs Court is listing matters for hearing;
c. Whether the Costs Court will list a proceeding for an early hearing or within a specified timeframe;
d. Before whom the matter is likely to be listed.
Each of the above queries should be made in open Court with all appropriate parties present.
- Practitioners should only request that orders be made on the papers by agreement of all relevant parties. Absent agreement on any issue, practitioners should not enquire of the Associate if the Costs Court will decide that issue on the papers without the matter being ventilated in Court.
Self represented litigants will find an information sheet if you wish to dispute your solicitor’s bill.