This note relates to the preparation of application books for civil proceedings in the Court of Appeal. 

This note is published under r 64.24 of the Supreme Court (General Civil Procedure) Rules 2015. It contains information and requirements relating to the preparation of hard copy and electronic application books for all types of civil hearings in the Court of Appeal .

An application book is a folder of the documents that will be considered by the Court of Appeal judges. 

  • Application books must be as concise as possible  
  • Any evidence included must have been admitted into evidence at trial – if you want to rely on new evidence, you must apply for the Court’s permission 
  • Documents included must be legible and necessary to the application – if not, the costs of including illegible or unnecessary documents and correcting this may fall on the lawyer or party responsible.

The information below on the preparation of application books is provided for general guidance. 

The document attached at the bottom of this page, Registrar ’s note on the preparation of application books, contains the official instructions you must follow when preparing a hard copy or electronic application book. It includes: 

  • instructions on what to include and how to format documents 
  • an example of an application book index 
  • the application book structure, including examples of documents to include in each section 
  • an example of a cover page and spine for hard copy application books 
  • instructions on how to make electronic application books searchable. 

Draft application book index

What is a draft application book index? 

A draft application book index is a list of all the documents you think should be in the application book. This includes the documents the judge considered when making the decision you are appealing, which you think are relevant to the appeal .  

It is a ‘draft’ because the other party will have a chance to respond to your version of the index. The Registrar decides what is in the final version, taking into account the feedback from both sides. 

When to file a draft application book index 

You file a draft application book index when you file an application for leave to appeal

If you are responding to an application for leave to appeal that someone has served on you, the written case you file in response must be accompanied by a version of the draft application book index with your proposed changes marked up (additions underlined and deletions struck through). This will help the Registrar decide what should be in the final application book index. 

Format of an application book index   

See the document attached at the bottom of this page, Registrar’s note on the preparation of application books, (Annexures 1 and 2) for instructions on how to format the index. 

The application book index must: 

  • contain all the sections shown in the first column of the Annexure 1 table, in the same order as the table 
  • name each section the same as in Annexure 1 (sub-headings can be included within a section where appropriate) 
  • if there are no documents in a particular section, state ‘Not applicable’ in the document description column. 
  • A guide to what documents to include in each section is in the second column of the Annexure 1 table. 

Describing the documents in the index

The index must: 

  • list each document separately and number each document in order 
  • describe each document, giving its date and the page or pages of the application book where it appears (the page numbers can only be included after the application book has been prepared, so do not include them in the draft index) 
  • separately list and describe each exhibit to an affidavit  
  • in the case of lower court or tribunal exhibits, also give the exhibit mark (eg. Exhibit A, Exhibit P1) and the page of the transcript of oral (spoken) evidence at which it was marked, and 
  • if the application book has more than one volume, identify where each volume starts, with appropriate headings, for example: Volume 1, Volume 2 etc. (this can only be included after the application book has been prepared, so do not include it in the draft index). 

Documents such as interrogatories and answers, affidavits of documents and the lower court book must only be included if they were admitted into evidence and are relevant to the application in the Court of Appeal. 

Including transcripts in the index 

Transcripts must: 

  • only be included where relevant to the application in the Court of Appeal 
  • be stated in the index, identifying the transcript page(s) you will rely on and noting that the transcript retains its original page numbers, and 
  • for each page of the transcript, only be included once and not referred to multiple times in the index. 

Consider if it is appropriate to separate the transcript as shown in the sample index in Annexure 2 of the Registrar’s note, or if it should be included as a single item or separated by date only. 

Application books

Court books and exhibits from a lower court or tribunal 

To the extent that the lower court book (or tribunal book, if applicable) is included, an index to the lower court book should also be included.   

If some pages of the lower court book are left out of the application book, this should be indicated in the lower court book index. If documents in the lower court book were marked as separate exhibits, they should be included in the application book according to their exhibit marks. 

If a document was made an exhibit more than once in the lower court or tribunal (in relation to an affidavit or otherwise), you can include it in the index in all appropriate places. However, only reproduce it once in the application book. Each time the document is mentioned in the index, clearly identify where it is reproduced.   

Registrar to finalise the contents of the application book 

Parties are expected to try to agree on the application book index. However, the Registrar will finalise the contents of an application book. 

While the Registrar will consider each party’s draft index, and the extent to which they agree, the Registrar may give any directions they consider appropriate when finalising the contents of the application book. This can include directions that particular documents be: 

  • left out or arranged in a different order 
  • included in the index but not in the application book (if this occurs, the index should state ‘Not reproduced’ against that item in the index). 

The application book aligns with the final index, sometimes called the ‘settled’ index. Usually, the Court requires you to prepare both hard copy and electronic versions of the application book.  

Filing the application book 

You file the application book by delivering to the Court of Appeal registry

  • the hard copy application book 
  • the electronic application book, saved on a USB memory stick (do not attempt to file the electronic version on RedCrest).   

If your application is for leave to appeal: 

  • usually, the Registrar will make directions which include a timetable for the preparation, filing and service of an application book (called a leave application book) 
  • usually, a date is set for the applicant to file and serve one copy of the leave application book. The registry assess that copy to make sure it complies with Court rules, and notifies the applicant of any corrections needed. A date is also set for the applicant to file and serve final copies of the leave application book (with corrections, if needed) 
  • if the Registrar has not set a timetable, the timetable in sections 14.4 and 14.5 of Practice Note SC CA 3, Civil appeals applies. 

For other application types: 

  • if an application book needs to be prepared, the Registrar will make directions about the preparation, filing and service of the book 
  • if an application other than for leave to appeal is to be heard at the same time as an application for leave to appeal, documents relating to all applications should be included in the one application book, unless the Court gives a different direction. 

Deemed abandonment and extension of time 

An application for leave to appeal will be taken to be abandoned if an applicant does not file or serve a leave application book within the time limits or the time allowed by the Registrar. 

Sometimes, the preparation of the leave application book takes longer than expected. The Registrar has power to extend the time to file or serve the book. An applicant’s request for an extension must be made: 

  • in writing, copied to the respondent (s), and 
  • a substantial number of days before the leave application book is due to be filed and served.   

Corrections to leave application book 

If the leave application book needs to be corrected, the filing party must, at the same time as filing the corrected copies, file on RedCrest a written certification that all required corrections have been made to the copies filed and served. The certification must comply with the form in Annexure 3 of the Registrar’s note (see the document at the end of this page). It must be signed by the party or their lawyer. 

Setting down fee and form 

At the same time as filing the final copies of a leave application book, the applicant must: 

  • file on RedCrest a setting down form, consistent with the form in Annexure 4 of the Registrar’s note (see the document at the end of this page); and 
  • pay the setting down fee that applies. 

If you do not file the setting down form and pay the setting down fee the application may not progress.   

Exceptions to Registrar’s instructions 

The Registrar may authorise an action that does not comply with the Registrar’s note and may, if needed, extend or reduce the time required to comply with the note. 

Author
Supreme Court of Victoria
Publisher
Supreme Court of Victoria
Date of publication