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What is Create case – Writ?
The Create case – Writ function initiates a new civil case by Writ in the County Court of Victoria via eFiling. It was developed, in association with the court, to automatically generate a properly formatted Writ document that is compliant with the Civil Procedure Rules.
You simply enter the details of the claim, the parties and the particulars of the claim. These details then generate the Writ.
‘Create Writ’ incorporates all civil procedure rules relating to a Writ, covering:
- claiming debt only
- acting as an agent for another firm or solicitor
- parties with differing representative capacities and other descriptors (former name, alias, and so on)
- Australian and international addresses
- plaintiffs with litigation guardians
- defendants outside Australia (service out)
- the inclusion of party schedules
- supply of a Form 1 for interstate defendants.
How do I create a Writ?
To create a Writ:
- Enter the details of the claim, the parties and the particulars of the claim. You’ll encounter various prompts and questions which may lead to collecting extra data where necessary.
- When you select ‘Review’, the system allows you to check that you have correctly entered all of the party details.
- Before lodging the document, you can preview a generated properly formatted Writ using the data you supplied, in accordance with the applicable Civil Procedure Rules.
Once previewed, you can place the document on hold or lodge it with the courts.
A new civil case is created when the court accepts the lodgement and provides a new case number. Case numbers have the format CI-YY-NNNNN, for example CI-21-01234.
Once the Writ successfully files, you can download and print the filed document, which is stamped with the case number, filed date and court seal.
The amount of information required when creating a Writ varies with each lodgement. The minimum required information is:
- your reference
- case description (must be correctly formatted – see below for details)
- case division
- case list
- cause of action
- court location
- plaintiff/s details (including ‘Email Address for Service’)
- defendant/s details
- indorsement/statement of claim.
Your details (the practitioner LSB) automatically associates with the plaintiff/s.
When you file an initiating document, you’ll be reminded that you need to file the appropriate certifications. You may file it via Additional filing once a case number has been allocated.
How do I format the ‘Case description’ correctly?
The ‘Case description’ generally identifies the plaintiff and defendant. The County Court of Victoria describes a specific set of rules governing the format of a ‘Case description’.
The ‘Case description’ is limited to 50 characters. If you need to enter a long party name that is likely to exceed the character limit, such as a complex organisation name, you must shorten the party name in an appropriate manner.
Appropriate formatting for a ‘Case description’
|For individuals, use the surname of each party.||‘SMITH v JONES’|
|For organisations, enter the company name in full using common abbreviations such as p/l in lieu of proprietary limited.||‘SMITH v ABC CEMENT P/L’|
|When filing for two parties of the same type, list only the first party followed by ‘& anor’.||‘SMITH & anor v JONES’|
|When filing for three parties or more of the same type, list only the first party followed by ‘& ors’.||‘SMITH & anor v ABC CEMENT P/L & ors’|
Why do I need to provide my ‘Representative details’?
The first time you use Create Writ, under your Confirm account code, you will need to supply your practitioner contact details. You need a minimum of street address, a business phone and contact email address.
These contact details populate in the Tram Tracks section of the Writ document. They should represent your firm’s (or solicitor’s) primary contact details.
These details are stored against your practitioner code in Confirm and are shared by all users accessing County Court of Victoria eFiling via your account.
As the representative details are for the practitioner, another user could update them while you have a Writ on hold. Make sure to review the representative details when you resume a Writ, since the details current at the time of lodging will appear in the generated document.
How do I enter the principal’s details if I’m acting as an agent?
If you’re acting as an agent for another solicitor or firm, you can enter their name and address details by selecting the ‘I am acting as the agent for another Firm/Solicitor’ checkbox on the ‘Claim details’ tab.
You must also show if the principal is a firm or a solicitor, as this affects the wording on the Writ.
What information should I record in ‘Party details’?
A new case must have at least one plaintiff and one defendant. You may add up to 30 plaintiffs and 30 defendants to a case.
The minimum required information for a party is:
- name (either individual or organisation)
- street address.
Only one street address is available for each party.
For each plaintiff that is an organisation, indicate whether they’re a not-for-profit organisation. If not, state whether they had an annual turnover of less than $200,000 in the last financial year.
You must also provide an ‘Email Address for Service’ of the plaintiffs (or indicate if the Registrar has granted you leave to omit these details from the Writ).
To record an international address, simply select the ‘The Party is located outside of Australia’ checkbox in the ‘Address details’ section.
Can the plaintiff’s address remain anonymous?
In cases where it is not appropriate for the defendant to know a plaintiff’s address, the practitioner’s details can be used.
Note that you don’t need to use phrases such as ‘care of’.
What if a party is in prison?
If either party is in prison, or any other institution:
- Enter the name of the institution in the ‘Property/Building name’ field.
- Leave the ‘Street name’ and ‘Street type’ fields blank.
What if one of the parties is under liquidation?
If one of the parties is under liquidation, you can add the words ‘(under liquidation)’ after the company name in the ‘Organisation name’ field.
Why am I being asked about Rule 7.01 and service outside Australia?
When you enter an international address for a defendant, you’ll be asked if the Writ will be served outside Australia under rule 7.01 of the Civil Procedure Rules. This rule applies when service outside Australia is allowed without the need for a court order.
If the Writ will be served under rule 7.01, you’ll be asked to:
- Supply an indorsement about the facts supporting your right to serve under this rule.
- Indicate the applicable Rule 7.01(1) paragraphs that are relied on.
This information will then be added to the Writ document. You’ll only need to supply this information once, regardless of how many defendants are located overseas.
How do I add a ‘Schedule of parties’?
If you enter more than two of either type of party, the system automatically creates and attaches a schedule of parties to the Writ.
How can I view my attachments?
You can view your attachments via the ‘Preview Writ’ option on the ‘Pre-lodgement summary’ screen, once you proceed to the ‘Review’ stage. Preview Writ will show a preview version of the completed Writ, including your attachments.
The ‘Lodge’ button is disabled – why can’t I lodge my Writ?
Three reasons apply for why the ‘Lodge’ button on the ‘Pre-lodgement summary’ screen would be disabled:
1. The Writ document is over 4MB (the current limit set by the County Court of Victoria)
You’ll need to reduce the size of your attachments to bring the total size to less than 4MB before you can lodge the Writ.
2. You haven’t yet previewed the Writ
You need to preview your Writ before lodgement. To see a preview of the Writ, select the ‘Preview Writ’ button.
You should check the Writ document for accuracy and correct attachments. Once you preview the Writ, the system will allow you to lodge it with the courts.
3. You haven’t verified the court statutory fee statement.
Your Writ filing is subject to certain fee rates. These are detailed in ‘How will the court fee be determined for a Writ document?’ below.
You’ll need to verify the ‘Declaration statement’ and check the box indicating that ‘The statement above is true and correct’.
What is ‘Preview Writ’ and is this sent to the court?
The ‘Preview Writ’ is a version of the Writ which will show you the contents and format of the document based on the data you’ve entered. It will show you where the case number, filing date and court seal will appear when the document is filed.
The preview version also has a watermark to ensure that it cannot be served. All placeholders and watermarks will be removed from the Writ before the system lodges your Writ with the courts.
My Writ is too large – how can I reduce the size of my attachments?
If your document exceeds the 4MB limit, try re-scanning any scanned portions of the document at a lower resolution. Lower resolution does not overly affect document quality if the scanned document is mostly text.
Can I place a Writ on hold?
You can put new cases on hold from the save case screen. Placing an eFiling on hold delays submission until you take it off hold.
The court and other filers cannot access eFilings that are on hold.
Please refer to County Court of Victoria eFiling overview for more information.
How will the court fee be determined for a Writ document?
Please refer to County Court of Victoria eFiling overview for more information.
How will I receive the case number?
New cases receive a Case number once the court has accepted the filing.
Case numbers are visible in ‘Filing results’. To find case numbers, you can use other identifying lodgement information such as:
- your reference
- case description
- status date.
How can I access my filed Writ?
Once your Writ has been successfully filed with the court, you can get the filed version via ‘Filing results’.
The case number will appear as a hyperlink in the ‘Case number’ column once the Writ has been successfully filed. If you select the hyperlink, a summary of the case and a link to the filed document will appear.
Why can’t I print a Form 28/Filing confirmation notice for my Writ?
A Writ, once successfully filed, will contain the case number, filing date and will have a court seal.
You don’t need a separate Filing confirmation notice/Form 28 as the seal is embedded within the document.
Why is a Form 1 attached to my filed Writ?
If at least one defendant is located in a state of Australia other than Victoria, the system will automatically provide you with a copy of the Form 1 as required for interstate service.
The Form 1 is intentionally included as a separate page, so that it can be:
- moved to the top of the Writ when required for service
- left out of the Writ if a particular defendant is located within Victoria.
How should I format my indorsement attachment?
You’ll need to supply information via an attachment to insert in the indorsement section of the Writ. Please indicate if your attachment constitutes an Indorsement or a Statement of Claim and ensure you include a signature block in your attached document.
How do I add ‘Litigation Guardian’ information?
If your plaintiff has a ‘Litigation Guardian’, select the relevant checkbox when entering the plaintiff details. You’ll be prompted to supply the guardian’s name, letter of consent and solicitor’s certificate as an attachment.
You can only upload one attachment. So, you’ll need to merge the letter of consent and solicitor’s certificate into one PDF before uploading.
How do I format my attachments?
The court will accept attachments if they’re A4 or US letter size and no larger than 4MB.
|Size||Width x height (mm)||Width x height (in)|
|A4||210 x 297 mm||8.3 x 11.7 in|
|US letter||215.9 x 279.4 mm||8.5 x 11 in|
How can I file an amended Writ using a document that was generated via Create Writ?
You can open and edit the Writ PDF as a Microsoft Word document or via a PDF editor.
In later versions of Word, simply open the file and select ‘OK’ when asked if you wish to convert the document. Word will convert the PDF contents into a Word document.
Make sure to remove the court seal and the filing date from the Writ before the amended Writ is filed.
Check your formatting carefully, as it can be affected when you edit PDFs in this way.