Published: 15 October, 2021

Media Release: New judges appointed to the Newcastle registry of the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia

The Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia welcomes the appointment of two new judges to the Court’s Newcastle registry, which will provide much-needed judicial resources to deal with the Court’s demanding family law workload in the region.

The Commonwealth Attorney-General, Senator the Hon Michaela Cash today announced the appointment of local family law barristers, Ms Vivien Carty and Ms Julie Kearney, to Division 2 of the Court.

There are currently three judges based in the Newcastle registry, and with these new appointments, it brings the total to five judges. This is in addition to the seven registrars allocated to Newcastle who have delegated powers and play a significant role in the case management of matters in the Court.

The Chief Justice of the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia, the Hon Will Alstergren, said that he was delighted to be able to welcome the appointment of such esteemed and eminently qualified individuals to the Bench.

“The calibre of these appointments reflects confidence in the Court’s reform agenda to deliver widespread improvements to the experience of litigants engaging with the Court, particularly in the area of family law.   

“The Court looks forward to welcoming the new judges to assist in delivering a world-leading court system that places the safety of children and vulnerable parties at the heart of the legal process. 

“On behalf of the Court, I warmly welcome Ms Carty and Ms Kearney and I am confident they will play a critical part in serving the people of Newcastle and surrounding regions.” 

Biographical details:

Ms Vivien Carty holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of NSW. She was admitted to practice in Victoria and NSW in 1983 and 1984 respectively. Ms Carty practiced as a solicitor with Mullane & Lindsay Solicitors in Newcastle from 2008 to 2011 before joining the NSW Bar in 2011, appearing predominantly in family law. From 2005-2011, Ms Carty was an Accredited Specialist Family Law for the Law Society of NSW.

Ms Julie Kearney has over 25 years’ experience in family law including nine years as an accredited family law specialist. She was a Registrar of the Family Court and Federal Circuit Court for 10 years from 2004 to 2014, before joining the Bar in 2015. Ms Kearney has held the role of editor of the Family Law Reports and contributing editor to a number of legal publications including the loose-leaf service, Australian Family Law and the text, Annotated Family Law Legislation. She is also a nationally accredited mediator and member of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee for the NSW Bar Association.

Denise Healy
Director – Media & Public Affairs, Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia
m. 0409 743 695e.