A class action on behalf of persons detained on Christmas Island from 27 August 2011 to 26 August 2014 inclusive was brought by lead plaintiff, A.S.
Her claim is in negligence and is against the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection and the Commonwealth of Australia.
On 27 March 2017, Justice J Forrest ruled that the representative claim of AS not proceed as a class action but rather as an individual claim to be tried on 26 April 2017.
The Court granted an application by the Minister and the Commonwealth that the claim no longer proceed under Part 4A of the Supreme Court Act. It held that there was a lack of commonality between the claim of AS and those of other group members (adults and minors numbering over 35,000 who were held on the island for four years) and the claim of AS (who was five-years-old at the time of her detention and was held on the island for 10 months) and that AS's claim did not provide an efficient or effective means of dealing with the claims of group members.
The Court stated that it was not in the interests of justice to allow AS's claim to proceed as a representative proceeding as there was little, if any, prospect that the findings that might be made in her claim would have relevance to those of the other group members.
AS's individual claim will now proceed to trial on 26 April 2017 with an estimated duration of six to eight weeks.
This is a list of current pleadings:
- Writ filed 26 August 2014
- Statement of Claim dated 23 September 2016
- Defence to Statement of Claim dated 23 September 2016 dated 14 October 2016
- First Third Party Defence dated 16 November 2016
- Second Third Party Defence dated 13 December 2016
This matter, A.S. by her litigation guardian v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection & Ors, S CI 2014 4423, is listed before Associate Justice Daly for Ruling on 12 April 2017 at 4pm and Justice J Forrest for application on 21 April 2017 at 10.30am.
The trial of AS's individual claim will proceed on 26 April 2017.
The Supreme Court Daily List should be referred to from 4pm the day prior to confirm hearing times and courtroom venues.