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Appeals to the Supreme Court

An appeal from a decision or order of the Environment Resources and Development Court lies to a single judge of the Supreme Court in the following cases:

  • decisions of commissioners sitting without a judge
  • decisions of a magistrate, master or registrar of the court
  • orders of the court which do not finally determine the rights of parties with respect to the outcome of the case, for example, an order to one of the parties that she or he produce some documents to the court.

In all other cases the appeal is to the Full Court of the Supreme Court. Appeals can be made on matters of law to the Supreme Court as a right, while the court's leave to appeal is required on matters of fact [Environment, Resources and Development Court Act 1993 (SA) s 30].

Because any dissatisfied party can appeal against an ERD Court decision, it often arises that a party that is successful in the ERD Court has to defend its win in a second court case before the Supreme Court. This can have important consequences for third party appellants, who are typically local residents who have appealed against an inappropriate development in their neighbourhood. The main consequence is that the Supreme Court is not a "user-friendly" jurisdiction that encourages parties to represent themselves. It is also a riskier jurisdiction in relation to awards of legal costs against unsuccessful parties. This is discussed in the following topic Costs.

Appeals to the Supreme Court  :  Last Revised: Wed Aug 27th 2014
The content of the Law Handbook is made available as a public service for information purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal advice. See Disclaimer for details. For free and confidential legal advice in South Australia call 1300 366 424.