Court recording and transcription services

The Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia’s recording and transcription contract is with Auscript Australasia Pty Limited.

All matters listed before a judge of the Court are recorded. From 3 October 2022, all Senior Judicial Registrar and Judicial Registrar family law court events are also recorded. Prior to this date, family law Registrar events were not recorded unless expressly requested by the Court.

Dispute resolution and conciliation conference events are confidential and are not recorded. Divorce hearings before a Deputy Registrar are also not recorded. General federal law and migration proceedings before Registrars are not recorded by default, unless expressly requested by the Court.

A party to a proceeding or their legal representative may purchase a full or partial copy of the transcript from Auscript. The person placing the order will be required to pay for the transcript. The rate of charge is fixed in the Court's contract with Auscript. The rates vary according to a number of factors, including a higher rate for transcripts required urgently. The transcript provider shall give details of the estimated cost of the transcript upon request.

A person who is not a party to family law proceedings cannot purchase a copy of the transcript without the leave of the Court. In general federal law proceedings non-parties may, in some circumstances, obtain access to a copy of the whole or part of the transcript of a proceeding.

See: Access to Court documents and transcript on the Federal Court website.

Under its current records retention policy, the Court retains recordings for 10 years. Accordingly, requests for transcript of proceedings beyond 10 years cannot be processed.

When requesting a transcript, parties need to be aware that they will be provided with only the transcript of proceedings that does not include judgments, rulings or orders.

See: Transcripts Order Form (Auscript web site)

Provision of transcript to parties by the Court

The Court does not provide transcripts to litigants at the Court's expense.

In limited circumstances, if the Court has already obtained a transcript, with the permission of the Court parties and/or their legal representatives may be permitted to peruse (but not copy) the Court's transcript in the court registry. The Court does not order transcript for all events so access to the transcript on the Court file may not always be available.

Occasionally the transcript of proceedings will constitute the reasons. In such instances, if reasons are required for the purposes of an appeal, the Court may provide a copy of the transcript, or portions of the transcript, to the parties and the Appeal Court for the purpose of the appeal.

Access to court recordings

Please note that private recordings of Court events or the copying of court recordings is strictly prohibited. 

Authorised audio recording of matters heard in the Court are only available in exceptional circumstances and when approved by the relevant Registry Manager.

When making a request to the relevant Registry Manager to access recordings parties must clearly set out the reasons why a recording is sought to be accessed. Access to recordings will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Should approval be provided by the Registry Manager to access recordings, the necessary facilities and supervision will be arranged, and a fee will be payable to Auscript.  

In some instances, parties may wish to listen to recordings of their proceeding before a Judge (or before a Registrar where it has been recorded) and select specific segments (excluding judgment, rulings and/orders) for written transcription.

As with the provision of transcripts, access will only be provided to recordings of proceedings, not judgments, rulings or orders.

Copyright

Copyright in Transcript is owned by the Commonwealth of Australia. Apart from any use permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, you are not permitted to reproduce, adapt, re-transmit or distribute the Transcript material in any form or by any means without seeking prior written approval from the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia.

Auscript national contact details (excluding WA in family law matters)

Telephone

1800 287 274

Email

clientservices@auscript.com.au

Website

www.auscript.com.au