Independent Lawyer Appointments and Search Orders

Independent Lawyer Appointments and Search Orders

The South Australian State Courts, the Federal Court and the Federal Circuit and Family Court all have the power to make what are called “Search Orders” (also known as “Anton Piller Orders”).

Broadly speaking, when Search Orders are made, the person who has applied to the Court is permitted to enter into someone else’s premises (whether residential, business or otherwise) for the purpose of securing and preserving evidence that may be relevant to a current or anticipated Court Case – and without prior notice to the person who is the subject of the Order.

Such orders are typically made when there is a genuine concern that relevant evidence could be hidden or destroyed if the person holding it “catches wind” that it may be relevant to legal proceedings.

The Court will typically require, when making such an Order, that an “Independent Lawyer” is appointed to serve the Court Order and related documents on the person who is subject of the Order, explain the documents, and otherwise supervise the execution/performance of the Order.

The Independent Lawyer is not a lawyer for either of the parties, but is a representative of the Court and is required to report back to the Court.

Senior Solicitors at PGC Legal have experience in being appointed as Independent Lawyers in serving and supervising the execution of Search Orders.

PGC Legal can also advise and represent parties who wish to seek a Search Order.

Further, if you are served with a Search Order, before it is executed you are entitled to consider the documents and obtain advice, and seek urgent legal advice about the order, and to be represented during the execution of a Search Order. PGC Legal can assist with advising and representing parties in that capacity.

For more information please contact Peter Charatsis, Brenton Priestley or Ashlee Provis.