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Cite as: March 2014 88 (03) LIJ, p.66

Supreme Court of Victoria – Facebook

Joining Facebook in October 2013, the Supreme Court of Victoria’s page was launched as a tool for engagement with the general public. It is an opportunity for members of the public to discover the reality of the courts rather than just what they read in the media. The page contains posts about recent Victorian Supreme Court and Court of Appeal judgments with direct links to the full text on Austlii. It also posts media releases, lectures and speeches as well as information about the Court itself.

Open Courts Bench Book – Judicial College of Victoria

The new Open Courts Bench Book has recently been published to provide guidance to the Open Courts Act 2013 (Vic) which commenced on 1 December 2013. The Bench Book includes commentary on topics such as open justice, the availability of suppression orders and the procedural aspect of drafting such orders. It also contains details about the rights and obligations of parties and the media in regard to information being suppressed. Particularly useful is the suite of model orders that are available in word document which can be adapted.

Hague Conference on Private International Law

The Hague Conference on Private International Law, with 75 members, is a global inter-governmental organisation that develops multilateral legal instruments and its website provides valuable information on international law. More specifically, it details areas such as protection of children and adults, legal co-operation, litigation and commercial law on an international basis. Interestingly, it also contains the INCADAT which is an international child abduction database that can be searched to locate summaries and full texts judgments.

Victorian Parliament Papers

The Victorian Parliament has completed the mammoth task of creating a searchable index of all parliamentary papers dating back to 1851. The collection, amounting to more than 10,000 documents, includes often requested parliamentary submissions such as committee reports, ombudsman’s reports, auditor general’s reports and royal commissions reports. Using the advanced search interface, the database is searchable by year of publication, table of contents and parliamentary paper number – useful in narrowing down the number of results retrieved when dealing with such a large collection of documents.

Legal Practitioners’ Liability Committee

It’s been some time since we showcased the Legal Practitioners’ Liability Committee and while Victorian lawyers are no doubt aware of its services, we thought a reminder about the excellent resources available via its website would be beneficial. The Practice Risk Guides are a good place to start. Available as PDF files, these substantial guides cover areas such as commercial leases, executors’ duties, property, and commercial and personal injury litigation. With many of these guides updated in the past 12 months, it may be time to update your digital library.

Supreme Court of Victoria - Twitter

Consisting chiefly of sentencing announcements following major criminal trials, the new Supreme Court Twitter account can make for some bleak reading in among your breakfast feed. Nevertheless, it’s an important step forward for the transparency of the Victorian justice system, and it’s not all a crime scene. Important civil cases are also included (often with a direct link to a full judgment transcript), as well as general Supreme Court happenings, announcements and links to mainstream media articles and interviews.

Reviews are provided by the LIV library, ph 9607 9360; email

We welcome suggestions for websites, apps and blogs to include in this column.

Neither the LIV nor the LIJ in any way endorse or take any responsibility whatsoever for any material contained on external sites referred to by the LIJ.


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