Documents - prescribed forms & useful templates

Many documents filed in the High Court must be set out in a certain way (a 'prescribed form'). Some documents (such as a statement of claim or notice of appeal) do not.

The information below (broken down by document type) provides links to prescribed forms (if one exists) or templates (if there is no prescribed form).

On this page:

General requirements

All documents filed in the High Court must have a coversheet compliant with High Court Rules form G1 (external link)

The first document a party files must have a memorandum that complies with form G10 (external link)

All documents must comply with Part 5: Subpart 2 of the High Court Rules (external link)

Before preparing a form, check whether a High Court Rule applies. The relevant rule number appears at the top of each form. If a rule applies, you must comply with it.

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Notice of proceeding

A notice of proceeding tells the defendant that you are taking legal action against them. In judicial review proceedings, a notice of proceeding tells the respondent (the body whose decision you are seeking review of) that you are taking legal action against it.

The content that must be in a notice of proceeding is set out in form G2 of the High Court Rules (unless a summary judgment application is made at the time you file the proceeding).

Form G2 of the High Court Rules (external link)

Attach the following documents to the notice of proceeding:

  • Attach a memorandum containing the information set out in form G3 (unless you are making a claim under the Declaratory Judgments Act 1908 or the Family Protection Act 1955).
  • If you are making a claim under the Declaratory Judgments Act 1908, attach a memorandum containing the information set out in form G4.
  • If you are making a claim under the Family Protection Act 1955, attach a memorandum containing the information set out in form G5.

Form G3 of the High Court Rules (external link)

Form G4 of the High Court Rules (external link)

Form G5 of the High Court Rules (external link)

If you apply for a summary judgment when you file the proceeding, the content that must be in the notice of proceeding is set out in form G13 (external link)

Find out more about summary judgments

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Statement of claim

A statement of claim tells the court and the defendant/s what you are seeking and why you are seeking it.

You need to follow the general requirements about the format of court documents, and also rules 5.25-5.35 of the High Court Rules, which outline what a statement of claim has to contain.

Read High Court Rules 5.25-5.35 (external link)

A statement of claim needs to:

  • list the full name, address and occupation of each party involved (for example, you as applicant and the respondent/s) on the coversheet
  • clearly set out the events or circumstances that caused you to make a claim (called the causes of action) with a separate paragraph for each event or circumstance
  • describe the causes of action in enough detail to allow the court and the defendant/s or respondent/s to understand specifically what you are alleging against each defendant or respondent (for example, you should refer to particular times, places, amounts etc but you do not need to describe the evidence that supports the facts you are alleging at this stage)
  • clearly say what you are seeking or what relief you are claiming (for instance, the amount of money you are seeking from the defendant) – note: the only relief available in judicial review proceedings is for a decision to be quashed and referred back to the original decision-maker, or for the decision to be quashed and substituted by a new decision of the High Court
  • if there is more than one cause of action, state the relief you are seeking immediately after each cause of action (a cause of action should only be included if you are seeking something as a result).

The information in a statement of claim should be specific, concise and relevant. It should not be vague or contain information that is not specifically relevant to what you are claiming.

TemplateStatement of claim [DOCX, 48 KB]

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Originating application

Originating applications are documents that tell the court and any respondents about the orders you are seeking from the court. Originating applications must be accompanied by an affidavit in support (unless the court says that evidence will be heard orally).

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Notice of appeal

A notice of appeal tells the court and the other parties that you want to appeal a decision.

You need to follow the general requirements about the format of court documents, and also rule 20.9 of the High Court Rules, which outlines what a notice of appeal must contain.

High Court Rule 20.9 (external link)

A notice of appeal should contain:

  • the full name and description of each party on the coversheet (note: the original decision-maker cannot be named as a respondent)
  • the Act you are bringing the appeal under
  • the decision or part of a decision that you are appealing against
  • the grounds on which you are appealing (in enough detail that the court and the other parties can understand what you claim was wrong with the original decision)
  • the relief that you are seeking (for example, that the original decision be overturned).

Template: Notice of appeal [DOC, 26 KB]

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Request to issue a bankruptcy notice

A request to issue a bankruptcy notice must comply with the High Court Rules form B1 (external link)

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Bankruptcy notice

A bankruptcy notice must comply with the High Court Rules form B2 (external link)

A certified copy of the judgment or order on which it is based must be attached.

You will need to give two copies of the bankruptcy notice to the court: one to be filed with the court and one to be signed by a registrar or deputy registrar and returned to you so you can serve it on the debtor.

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Creditor’s application for adjudication

A creditor’s application for adjudication must comply with the High Court Rules form B3 (external link)

You must attach an affidavit in support and a summons to debtor with copies so that one may be filed and another served on the debtor.

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Affidavit in support of a creditor’s application for adjudication

An affidavit in support of a creditor’s application for adjudication must comply with the High Court rules form B4 (external link)

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Summons to debtor

A summons to debtor must comply with the High Court rules form B5 (external link)

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Notice by debtor of intention to oppose application

A notice by debtor of intention to oppose application must comply the High Court Rules form B6 (external link)

As with a general notice of opposition, an affidavit in support must be attached.

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Order adjudicating debtor bankrupt

If the judgment debtor is declared bankrupt, you will need to bring an ‘order’ to the court for sealing as soon as possible. The order must comply with the High Court Rules form B16 (external link)

You will need to provide at least three copies of the order to the court: one to be kept by the court, one for the Official Assignee and one for the debtor. If you want a sealed copy for yourself you should provide an extra copy.

Once the court has sealed the order, they will give you back the sealed duplicates for you to serve on the Official Assignee and the debtor. It is important that this is done promptly as the Official Assignee is not able to take any steps with the debtor’s property until the sealed order is received.

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Application for writ of habeas corpus

An application for writ of habeas corpus must generally be made by originating application.

If the applicant needs it with unusual urgency, the court may accept an oral application made by telephoning the High Court registry closest to where the applicant is being detained; see section 7(2) of the Habeas Corpus Act 2001 (external link)

Template: Application for a writ of habeas corpus [DOC, 27 KB]

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Interlocutory application

In some circumstances you may want to file an interlocutory application for orders or directions either at the start of the proceeding or later on. Part 7: Subpart 2 of the High Court Rules applies to interlocutory applications.

Part 7: Subpart 2 of the High Court Rules (external link)

Interlocutory applications filed on notice: an on-notice application will be provided to all other parties to the proceeding and they will be able to respond to your application. This application will need to comply with the High Court Rules form G31 (external link)

Interlocutory applications filed without notice: a without-notice application will be filed in court but does not need to be given to the other party. This application will need to comply with the High Court Rules form G32 (external link)

Sealing an interlocutory order: if you get an interlocutory order, you must draw up the order and submit it to the registrar for sealing if the order affects a person who is not a party to the proceeding, joins a person as a party to the proceeding, or asks that it is served on a person. The order must comply with the High Court Rulesform form G34 (external link)

You must file an original order plus enough copies for the other parties.

Interlocutory application for interim injunction: an interim injunction is a temporary order of the court that prohibits or compels some action until the court has heard the arguments of all the parties and made a permanent order.

Applications for interim injunctions are made by filing an interlocutory application. Interim injunctions can only be applied for after the statement of claim has been filed in a proceeding, unless there is real urgency; see rule 7.53 of the High Court Rules (external link)

To apply for an interim injunction, you will need to file the following documents:

  • interlocutory application for interim injunction
  • affidavit supporting the interlocutory application
  • an undertaking as to damages (that is, a signed document stating that you will pay any damages awarded against you as a result of the injunction - see rule 7.54 of the High Court Rules and the Costs and disbursements section of this website).
  • a memorandum explaining why urgency is needed, if you are applying for an interim injunction under urgency.

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Statement of defence

A statement of defence tells the court and the plaintiff/s whether a defendant admits or denies each of the allegations of fact made in the statement of claim and, if some or all of the allegations are denied, on what grounds.

Specific rules about what a statement of defence has to contain are stated in rule 5.48 of the High Court Rules (external link)

  • You must either admit or deny each allegation of fact made in the statement of claim, unless an allegation does not affect you (for example, the allegation is against another defendant).
  • Denials of allegations of facts must not be evasive. For example, if you wish to deny an allegation that you received a sum of money, you must either deny that you received any money or set out how much you did receive, rather than simply denying that you received the particular amount specified.
  • Your statement of defence must be clear and particular – if you deny an allegation of fact, you should give enough detail so the court and the plaintiff/s can understand specifically how you are defending yourself (you should refer to particular times, places, amounts etc - but you do not need to provide evidence to support your defence at this stage).
  • If an allegation is not denied, it will be treated as being admitted.
  • If you want to raise a matter of defence that does not arise from your admissions or denials of the plaintiff’s allegations, you must include this in your statement of defence.

Template: Statement of defence [DOC, 27 KB]

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Notice of appearance under protest to jurisdiction

You can file a notice of appearance under protest to jurisdiction if you believe that the High Court does not have the jurisdiction to hear a claim. The notice can be filed until the time period for filing a statement of defence has expired – see rule 5.49 of the High Court Rules (external link)

The content of a notice of appearance under protest to jurisdiction is set out in the High Court Rules form G7 (external link)

Note: if you take a step that is useful or necessary only if jurisdiction is conceded, then you will have submitted to the court’s jurisdiction.

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Notice of appearance for ancillary purposes

If you do not oppose the plaintiff’s claim but want to be heard on any secondary matter (including costs), you can file a notice of appearance for ancillary purposes – see rule 5.50 of the High Court Rules (external link)

There is no time limit for filing this document but note the rules governing judgment by default - rules 15.3-15.14 (external link)

The content that must be in a notice of appearance for ancillary purposes is set out in the High Court Rules form G8 (external link)

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Notice of appearance reserving rights

If you do not oppose the plaintiff’s claim but want to reserve some rights as a defendant, you can file a notice of appearance reserving rights – rule 5.51 of the High Court Rules (external link)

You might do this if you think a hostile third party may be joined or an existing party may take steps that are not in your interests.

There is no time limit for filing this document but note the rules governing judgment by default - rules 15.3-15.14 (external link)

The content that must be in a notice of appearance reserving rights is set out in the High Court Rules form G9 (external link)

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Statement of defence and counterclaim

You can file a statement of defence and a counterclaim in one document, which means you will need to pay only the fee for filing a counterclaim.

A counterclaim must be filed before the timeframe for filing a statement of defence has expired.

See above for information on the requirements for a statement of defence. See below for information on the requirements for a counterclaim.

Template: Statement of defence and counterclaim [DOC, 28 KB]

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Statement of counterclaim

If you want to make a claim against the plaintiff/s in response to the claim made against you, you can file a counterclaim; refer to rules 5.53-5.61 of the High Court Rules (external link)

A counterclaim is a statement of claim against the plaintiff that has the heading 'Counterclaim'. Refer to the statement of claim section for more information on statements of claim.

Where your counterclaim is against the plaintiff/s and another person (whether that person is a party to the proceeding or not), a notice of proceeding and memorandum must be filed along with the counterclaim. See above for the content that must be in a notice of proceeding and a memorandum

Template: Statement of counterclaim [DOC, 27 KB]

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Statement of cross-claim

If you want to make a claim against another defendant in the proceeding, you can file a cross-claim.

A cross-claim is essentially a statement of claim against another defendant to the proceeding. Refer to the statement of claim section for more information on statements of claim.

A cross-claim must be accompanied by a notice in the form set out in G15 (external link)

Template: Statement of cross-claim [DOC, 27 KB]

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Statement of claim against a third party

If you want to make a claim against a third party (a party not previously named as a party to the proceeding) in response to the claim made against you, you can file a third party notice. A third party notice must be filed and issued within 10 days after the timeframe for filing a statement of defence expires, unless the court directs a longer timeframe – see rule 4.4(2) High Court Rules (external link)

For the rules governing claims against third and subsequent parties see rules 4.4-4.17 (external link)

The content that must be in a third party notice is set out in the High Court Rules form G14 (external link)

A third party notice must be filed along with a statement of claim against the third party.

Template: Statement of claim against a third party [DOC, 72 KB]

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Notice of opposition

If you are a party to a proceeding and want to oppose an interlocutory or originating application on notice that was filed by another party, you will need to file a notice of opposition. The notice of opposition tells the court and the applicant/s that you oppose the orders that are sought and the grounds on which you oppose them. The content that must be in a notice of opposition is set out in the High Court Rules form G33 (external link)

If you want to file any evidence in support of your notice of opposition, you should file an affidavit when you file your notice of opposition. See the Evidence section of this website for more information.

A notice of opposition must be filed within 10 working days of when you were served with the application. If the hearing is within 10 working days, you will need to file the notice of opposition at least 3 working days before the date of the hearing; see rule 7.24 of the High Court Rules (external link)

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Notice of cross-appeal

You must file a notice of cross-appeal at least 2 working days before the first appeal conference (see rule 20.11 of the High Court Rules).

A notice of cross-appeal needs to contain the same information as a notice of appeal

Template: Notice of cross-appeal [DOC, 27 KB]

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Affidavit

An affidavit must comply with the relevant form in the High Court Rules (depending on the type of application it relates to). See the Evidence section of this website for more information.

Template: Affidavit [DOC, 28 KB]

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Affidavit of service

You need to file an affidavit of service if you apply to place a company in liquidation or if the defendant or respondent denies having been served.

The affidavit of service needs to state:

  • the day and time that the debtor was served
  • who served them
  • how they were served (and if they were served in person)
  • how the person who served the debtor knew that they were the debtor (for example, the person identified themselves as the person named in the bankruptcy notice).

A copy of the documents served must be attached to the affidavit as exhibits. See the Evidence section of this website for more information.

An affidavit of service must comply with the High Court Rules form G16 (external link)

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Summary judgment

Summary judgment is a procedure that allows a plaintiff to obtain judgment from the court without going through a full trial. Summary judgment can only be done in certain, relatively rare situations where there is no genuine arguable defence to one or more of the claims against the defendant. Summary judgment cannot be used as a shortcut in cases where the defendant intends to defend the claim and can raise an arguable defence.

If you are the plaintiff and you are applying for summary judgment, your statement of claim and notice of proceeding must be accompanied by an interlocutory application on notice for summary judgment in form G31 and a supporting affidavit. When applying for summary judgment, the notice of proceeding must comply with the High Court Rules form G13.

If you want to oppose a plaintiff’s application for summary judgment, you must file a notice of opposition at least 3 working days before the hearing. The date of the hearing will be in the notice of proceeding. You can also file a statement of defence

If you are the defendant and you are applying for summary judgment, your application for summary judgment and supporting affidavit will be filed at the same time as your statement of defence.

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