Full Court Minute Books

Case B28/2012

RCB as litigation guardian of EKV, CEV, CIV and LRV v. The Honourable Justice Colin James Forrest, one of the judges of the Family Court of Australia & Ors

Case No.


Case Information


Constitutional law (Cth) – Judicial power of Commonwealth – Constitution, Ch III – Family court proceedings – Director-General of the Department of Child Safety (Queensland) initiated proceedings in the Family Court of Australia under Family Law (Child Abduction Convention) Regulations 1986 ("regulations") – Court ordered that EKV, CEV, CIV and LRV ("the affected children") be returned to Italy – Affected children did not have separate and independent legal representation in proceedings – Section 68L(3) of Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) ("Act") provides that in proceedings under the regulations a court "may order that the child's interests … be independently represented … only if the court considers there are exceptional circumstances that justify doing so" – Whether s 68L(3) of Act and the regulations require a Chapter III court to exercise judicial power in a manner repugnant to the judicial process.
Administrative law – Procedural fairness – Scope and content of duty of procedural fairness – Application by litigation guardian to intervene in hearing of application to discharge return order – Whether refusal of opportunity to have separate and independent representation denied affected children procedural fairness.

Short Particulars


21/05/2012 Application for an order to show cause

22/05/2012 Hearing (Single Justice, Brisbane)

24/05/2012 Notice of constitutional matter (Plaintiff)

25/05/2012 Hearing (Single Justice, Brisbane)

22/06/2012 Written submissions (Plaintiff)

13/07/2012 Written submissions (Third Defendant)

17/07/2012 Written submissions (Second Defendant)

20/07/2012 Written submissions (Attorney-General of the Commonwealth intervening)

20/07/2012 Written submissions (Attorney-General for the State of South Australia intervening)

20/07/2012 Written submissions (Attorney-General for the State of Western Australia intervening)

27/07/2012 Reply

31/07/2012 Written submissions (Fourth Defendant)

07/08/2012 Hearing (Full Court, Canberra)

07/11/2012 Judgment  (Judgment summary)

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