VCAT hearings during coronavirus restrictions

In response to COVID-19, most VCAT hearings are continuing to be held by phone or video conference, unless in some limited circumstances we allow in-person hearings.

Status of hearings

Throughout COVID-19 restrictions, hearings will go ahead as scheduled unless we notify you otherwise.

COVID-19 has impacted normal timeframes for hearings. We are working hard to address the delays and will contact you once your application progresses.

If your hearing has been postponed

Unless we tell you, you should assume your case will go ahead according to any notices or information that you have previously been given – there is no need to contact VCAT to check on your case.

If we decide that your case can only go ahead face-to-face, it will be postponed (adjourned).

Where possible, matters previously postponed (adjourned) as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will be rescheduled for hearing, if they can proceed using phone or videoconference. We are managing the backlog of cases. 

VCAT will contact parties to advise new dates to attend VCAT.

Some matters will be decided ‘on the papers’, which means that they will be decided on the basis of documents and evidence provided to us, without the parties needing to attend a hearing.

For more information contact us: on 1300 01 8228 or visit Upcoming hearings for case times.

If you settle before the hearing

You can try to resolve the dispute with other parties before your hearing. If you come to an agreement (settle), you must let us know. 

How to settle before the hearing

What happens if you miss your hearing

VCAT will inform you of your allocated hearing time in advance. If you cannot make this time you should request a change of hearing date. If you miss the hearing for your case, the member may make a decision and create orders in your absence.

Apply for a review or rehearing

Email all documents before your hearing

Any documents you will use in your phone or videoconference hearing, must be emailed to VCAT and all parties 48 hours before your hearing to avoid your hearing being delayed.
Email your documents only after we send you your hearing date.

How we are holding hearings

By phone or videoconference

The majority of hearings are being held by phone or videoconference. We will contact you to let you know how you will attend and explain what you need to do prepare.

The technology used will depend on the requirements of a case, such as its length, complexity and the number of parties.

How to join a phone or videoconference

Limited in-person hearings

In some circumstances we may allow in person hearings. We will advise you and the other parties if your hearing will be in person and the location.

COVID safety measures for in-person hearings

VCAT maintains contact tracing requirements and COVID-safe cleaning measures for all our venues.

Access the Court Services Victoria COVID-safe plan

Upon entry to VCAT you will be required to:

  • complete QR code requirements
  • practise safe hygiene by washing your hands and using hand sanitiser provided in the VCAT foyer, hearing rooms and bathrooms.

Please stay at home and contact us on 1300 01 8228 if you cannot attend the hearing or you:

  • feel unwell, or have any signs or symptoms of COVID-19
  • have had any contact with a known case of COVID-19 or
  • are currently working or living with anyone who is in isolation, in quarantine, or awaiting test results for COVID-19.

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