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Friday, 20 July 1906

Mr ISAACS (Indi) (Attorney-General) -I should like to point out two matters that are deserving of attention. In the first place, in section 86 of the Rules of Court, there is a sub-clause which gives power to the Judges to pass Rules of Court generally regulating all matters of practice and procedure in the High Court, and other Federal Courts, and, as far as may be necessary, in Courts of Federal jurisdiction. It was intended that the High Court should have the power indicated by the amendment, and the provision now proposed to be inserted will make the position quite clear. We are not taking away any one's right. We are not interfering with any State Court, nor are we requiring that any State tribunal shall be compelled to listen to practitioners who are not entitled, under ordinary circumstances, to appear before them. We desire, however, to give to the High Court powers which will remove it from its present position of absolute dependence upon the States Courts with regard to practitioners. If the Justices make a rule which is considered objectionable, it is within our power to deal with it. Section 87 of the Act requires that the Rules of Court shall be laid before Parliament, and provides that they maybe annulled within forty days. Therefore, Parliament has the whole matter within its control. Under these circumstances, I do not see how we can do any wrong by adopting the amendment.

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