​ሕግንና ደንብን በተመለከተ እርዳታ ማግኘት ይፈልጋሉን? - Amharic | هل تحتاج لمساعدة قانونية؟ - Arabic | ܤܢܝܼܩܵܐ ܝ݇ܘ̤ܬ ܠܗܲܝܵܪܬܵܐ ܩܵܢܘܿܢܵܝܬܵܐ؟ - Assyrian | Need Legal Help? - Auslan | Treba li vam pravna pomoc? - Bosnian | Burmese â Need Legal Help? | 需要法律帮助吗? - Chinese Simplified | 需要法律幫助嗎? - Chinese Traditional | Trebate li pravnu pomoć? - Croatian | ضرورت به کمک قانونی دارید؟ - Dari | Wïc Kuɔɔny në Wɛ̈t Löŋ? - Dinka | آیا به کمک حقوقی نیاز دارید؟ - Farsi | Gadreva na Veivuke Vakalawa? - Fijian | Kailangan ninyo ba ng tulong na panglegal? - Filipino | Besoin d’aide juridique ? - French | Χρειάζεστε βοήθεια σε νομικά ζητήματα - Greek | क्या आपको कानूनी सलाह चाहिए? - Hindi | Butuhkan Bantuan dalam Masalah Hukum? - Indonesian | Hai bisogno di assistenza legale? - Italian | ត្រូវការជំនួយលើបញ្ហាផ្លូវច្បាប់ឬទេ? - Khmer | 법적인 도움이 필요하십니까? - Korean | Ви треба ли помош со правни работи? - Macedonian | कानूनी सहयोग चाहिएको छ? - Nepalese | Necessita de ajuda com questões jurídicas? - Portuguese | Вам нужна юридическая помощь? - Russian | E Manaomia Fesoasoani i Mea Tau Tulafono? - Samoan | а ли вам треба помоћ у правним питањима? - Serbian | Ma u baahan tahay Caawimmad xagga sharciga ah?- Somali | ¿Necesita ayuda con cuestiones jurídicas? - Spanish | சட்ட உதவி தேவையா? - Tamil | ท่านต้องการความช่วยเหลือทางด้านกฎหมายไหม? - Thai | Fiema’u ha tokoni Fakalao? - Tongan | Yasal Danışmaya İhtiyacınız mı var? - Turkish | Cần Được Giúp Đỡ Về Luật Pháp? - Vietnamese |

Do I have to go to court? - Frequently Asked Questions ​

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1. I don't know where to find the​​ person who owes me money. What can I do?

If you don't know where to find the debtor, you can't write a letter of demand, try mediation or file a claim in the Local Court. See Finding and naming the right defendant for suggested ways to find a debtor.

Hint icon​If you can't find the debtor now, you may be able to in the future. Kee​p in mind that the time limit for starting legal action is six years from the date the debtor should have paid the money.


2. How do I find out whether the​​ debtor has any income or assets to pay the debt?

Most information about a debtor's income and assets is private. All you can find out from public records is whether the debtor is bankrupt and whether they have any court judgments against them. Before starting a court case, you should search the National Personal Insolvency Index or the Australian Securities and Investment Commission.

For more information, see Do I have to go to court? - Questions to consider.

If you get a court judgment against the debtor, you can make the debtor provide information about their income and assets. This is done through an Examination Notice or an Examination Order.

For more information, see After the case.

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3. Does mediation work?​​​

Community Justice ​Centres say that over 80% of the mediations they hold result in an agreement.

For more information, see Mediation.


4. Are people bound by an agreement​​ reached in mediation?

Agreements made in mediation are not legally binding or enforceable. However, if the parties reach an agreement at mediation, this agreement may be used as the basis for a legally binding agreement or deed if both parties consent.

For more information, see Settling the case.

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5. I have received a request for more information (further and better ​​particulars) to my letter of demand. Do I have to respond?

No, you don't have to respond to the request for more information about a letter of demand. However, it could save time and make it more likely that the debtor will pay the debt if you provide the requested information.


6. I don't have the information or evidence to answer the request for further and better particulars, what do I do?

If you don't know how to respond to the request for further and better particulars, get legal advice.


7. How long will a court case take?

If you file a claim in the Small Claims Division of the Local Court, the length of the case depends on whether the debtor defends the claim. If the debtor does defend the claim, it is likely to take between 3 and 6 months to finalise the case.

If the debtor doesn't file a Defence within 28 days of being served with the Statement of Claim, you can apply for a default judgment against the debtor on the 29th day. 

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8. When will I get my money?​​​​

Even if the court says the debtor owes you the money, the debtor may not pay you. If this happens, you will need to take enforcement action. This could take several months. The court may agree to an instalment order so that you receive the money in smaller amounts over a longer period. If the debtor has no assets or income, you may never receive the money.