Functions and Structure

Court Services Victoria (CSV) was established under the Court Services Victoria Act 2014, and commenced operations on 1 July 2014.

CSV's functions are to provide, or arrange for the provision of, the administrative services and facilities necessary to support the performance of the judicial, quasi-judicial and administrative functions of the Victorian Courts and VCAT, and to enable the Judicial College of Victoria and the Judicial Commission of Victoria to perform their functions.

All people employed in the administration of the courts, VCAT, the Judicial College and the Judicial Commission, excluding those performing judicial or quasi-judicial functions, are considered staff members of CSV.

The Courts Council appoints the CEO to manage the support services and functions of CSV in accordance with the strategy, plans, procedures and policies of the Court's Council. Mr David Ware is the Chief Executive Officer of CSV.

In performing its functions and carrying out its powers, CSV acknowledges and respects the unique nature of each jurisdiction, the Judicial College and the Judicial Commission, and respects the desire of each of those entities to maintain their own identity and independence.  

Courts and Tribunals

All jurisdictions are established by specific legislation, which provides for the composition and scope of their jurisdiction. Each court and tribunal is comprised of its judicial members, has its own internal governance mechanisms, and is responsible for establishing how the judicial business of the court or tribunal is managed in accordance with law. 

Each jurisdiction, through the Head of Jurisdiction, directs the administrative support provided by jurisdiction-based staff, under the management of the Court CEO. The Court CEO manages the staff and administrative services of their jurisdiction, and contributes to the operations of CSV by ensuring that appropriate administrative and support services are provided to their jurisdiction.

The Courts Council on the nomination of the relevant Head of Jurisdiction appoints Court CEOs. Court CEOs are responsible to their Head of Jurisdiction for the operation of their jurisdiction, and to the CSV CEO with respect to all other matters. 

Read more about the courts, VCAT, the Judicial College and the Judicial Commission on the Jurisdictions and the College page of this website. 

Relationship to Parliament and Executive Government 

Court Services Victoria operates independently of executive government in support of judicial independence.  CSV undertakes its functions independently of departmental or ministerial control, but remains accountable to both the executive and legislative branches of government in the way in which it carries out its operations and achieves its functions.  

The Attorney-General continues to have portfolio responsibility for CSV, however his statutory powers of direction are limited to matters such as the preparation and submission of the budget.

CSV receives a direct appropriation from the Parliament to enable it to carry out its functions, and manages its own budget subject to the Attorney-General's budget approval and adherence to the requirements of the State's financial management framework. CSV is accountable for the expenditure of that appropriation to the Department of Treasury and Finance.

The relationship between CSV and Parliament is guided by a Memorandum of Understanding between Executive Government and the Courts Council, which was signed in May 2015. The MOU sets out agreed principles and processes regarding the relationship between CSV and Executive Government, including how the parties will share information, consult with each other, and deal with financial information and budget processes.

The services and facilities that are now provided by CSV were previously provided by or through the Department of Justice and Regulation. CSV maintains a strong working relationship with the Department, and DJR continues to perform functions for the Attorney-General including:

  • managing the development of legislation in relation to courts and tribunals, and 
  • advising the Attorney-General regarding matters concerning the justice system including courts, tribunals and the judiciary.

This page was last updated: Tuesday 4 July 2017 - 8:32am