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Legal > Complex Disputes & Litigation

Appeals at Court:

Overview FAQs Articles Locations

If a decision at Court or a Tribunal has been made against you, you may have grounds to appeal. As time limits apply for the lodgement of an appeal, you should urgently obtain legal advice as to whether a prospective appeal has any merit and your chances of succeeding in any such appeal.

At Navado we have experience in appealing decisions in relation to civil claims and criminal proceedings in most jurisdictions. If you have had a ruling made against you, and seek to appeal, Navado may be in the position to consider aspects of the law which may be grounds of appeal and to advise you on.

Local Court

In the New South Wales Local Court there may be appeal rights in the following circumstances:

  • If the Defendant was not present when convicted and sentenced;
  • Appeal in criminal and AVO cases;
  • Appeal in environment offences;
  • Appeal in civil cases.

Appeals against decisions of the Local Court are determined by review in the Local Court or by an appeal heard in the District Court. Occasionally, an appeal may be heard by the Supreme Court depending on the circumstances of the case.

District Court

Appeals against decisions of the District Court of New South Wales are heard in the Court of Criminal Appeal or by the Court of Appeal.

Supreme Court

Appeals may be lodged against Supreme Court decisions to the High Court of Australia with the leave of the High Court.

Federal Court of Australia

The Federal Court of Australia can hear appeals from:

  • Judgments of a single Judge of the Federal Court whether interlocutory or final;
  • Judgments of a Supreme Court of a Territory other than the Australian Capital Territory or Northern Territory;
  • Certain judgments of a State Court (other than a Full Court of the Supreme Court),  or a Court of the Australian Capital Territory or the Northern Territory, exercising federal jurisdiction;
  • Certain judgments of the Federal Circuit Court.

The Federal Court can hear and determine appeals on decisions from the:


  • Administrative Appeals Tribunal (“AAT”);
  • Professional Services Review Tribunal;
  • Defence Force Disciplinary Appeals Tribunal;
  • Australian Competition Tribunal;
  • Superannuation Complaints Tribunal;
  • National Native Title Tribunal;
  • Commissioner or Registrar of Patents, Designs, Trade Marks (Intellectual Property).


Generally it may be the case that the grounds of your appeal are based on questions of the law, as opposed to questions of evidence or of admissions. In this way, Navado has experience in challenging rulings to appeal on grounds which may include procedural errors by the police or court, administrative errors in rulings by Government departments or potential grounds for errors in proceedings including acts or omissions prejudicing the jury.

At Navado we have experience in appeals in most jurisdictions. We may be in a position to assist you to appeal matters originally heard in the Local Court, District Court, Supreme Court and Federal Court. At Navado we have represented clients in the Federal Court, and are always willing to advise on your appeal options, with consideration to the merits of your case. At Navado, due to our close connection with a number of experienced barristers, we may also be able to represent your appeal in the High Court, where leave is granted. Additionally, with a mind to our criminal practice experience, we may be able to represent you at the Court of Appeal or Criminal Court of Appeal. 

If you seek advice on whether a decision is appealable and on your prospects of succeeding in an appeal, we recommend that you contact our office and arrange an appointment to see one of our Complex Disputes & Litigation Solicitors in our Sydney office. By appointment, we can also arrange a time for you to see one of our lawyers in one of our branch offices. For a complete listing please see our "Locations" tab.

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This webpage (and any material or wording appearing on this webpage) is provided for general information purposes only and does not constitute any Legal Advice. It does not take into account your objectives, your instructions or all of the relevant facts and/or circumstances. Navado accepts no responsibility to any person who relies on the information provided on this website. We further refer you to our Disclaimer.

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