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Northern Territory Magistrates Courts

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Legal Jargon

Criminal | Civil


Good Behaviour Bonds

This is an agreement between you and the court where you undertake to be of good behaviour for a set period of time. There is often a penalty for breeching the bond.


Fines can be given as a sentence. Unless otherwise specified there is 28 days to pay fines. If you require more time to pay your fine this may be arranged through the Fines Recovery Unit

Loss of Drivers License

If your license is cancelled you may be asked to hand it to Court staff. There is no possibility to apply for a work license.

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Plaintiff: the person who starts an action in a court against another.

Defendant: the person against whom an action in a court has been commenced

Judgment: the final order of the court which determines who is successful in the court action - judgement can be in favour of Plaintiff or the Defendant and in whatever terms the Court thinks fit.

Appeal: the process by which a party who is unhappy with a decision of the court, statutory body or tribunal applies to a higher court for that decision to be overturned

Default Judgment: a judgment that is obtained without the court hearing any evidence as to the merits of the claim eg when a party doesn't turn up to a court hearing or conference judgement can be entered against them

Interlocutory Application: any application made within a proceeding which doesn't require the Court to make final orders in that proceeding eg if a party fails to do something that is require by the rules then a party can apply to the court for an order that the other party take that step

Assessment of Damages: a hearing where a judgement creditor puts evidence before the court on affidavit to establish how they calculated the loss they are claiming

Affidavit: A document of sworn evidence of a witness to be used by the court.

Discovery: A process where each party must disclose to the other all documents they have or had in their power custody and control which touch on the issues between the parties.

Judgement Creditor: A person who has obtained an order from the court that another person pay him some money

Judgement Debtor: the person who a court has ordered pay a sum of money.

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