Guide: Perth District Courts

There is only a single District Court in WA which resides in the city. The District Court sits in the middle of the court hierarchy between the Magistrates Courts and the Supreme Court.

You’ll find information below relating to the WA District Court:

  • What kind of cases it handles
  • Procedures and rules
  • Forms and fees
  • Where you can find case decisions and listings
  • Statistics relating to cases in the District Court
  • Contact information for the District Court of WA


Although the District Court primarily resides at its headquarters in the city, it also maintains a registry across the remote locations in WA such as Albany, Kalgoorlie, Busselton, Esperance, and more.

As of writing (Feb-17), there are currently 24 appointed judges to the Perth District Court. Rotations are made on a regular basis as to travelling to the regional areas.

1st April 1970 was the official establishment date of the District Court in WA. It was established for the sole reasons of relieving pressure from the other courts, mainly the Supreme Court. It was based in the May Holman Centre until 2008 when it relocated to its new location on Hay Street.

Cases the District Court handles

The district court is able to hear cases under the two following jurisdictions:


  • Serious criminal offences are heard such as sexual assaults, serious fraud, drug-related offences, commercial theft, serious assaults, and a number of others.
  • The only crimes the District Court cannot hear are those where the term for imprisonment can be life. These cases are turned over to the Supreme Court.
  • Most of the time, a jury of 12 regular citizens will decide the outcome of the case. However, the accused may choose for their trial to be decided by the judge alone.


  • Claims can be heard by the District Court for cases relating to commercial and debt recovery of an amount up to $750,000.
  • For damages claimed in personal injury cases, there is no limit on the figure.
  • As the Magistrates Court is unable to deal with claims in motor vehicle accidents, the District Court also hear all claims in this jurisdiction.
  • Interesting fact: 66% of civil cases heard by the District Court relate to personal injury claims from motor vehicle and workplace accidents. The other 34% are commercial related.

If you are reading this in relation to your own case, you can find the best personal injury lawyers in Perth here.


District Court WA Rules and Procedures

A huge number of procedures and rules exist for the Perth District Court. As such, we strongly recommend hiring a lawyer instead of self-representing.

You can find all the procedures relating to civil cases here and the directions for criminal cases here.

There is one which we believe all should read at least once, the Use of Electronic Devices in Court (PDF).

Perth District Court Forms and Fees

Again, we recommend you not fill out these forms without the assistance of a lawyer, unless your well versed in the relevant legislation acts.

A few of the more commonly forms used in the District Court include:


  • Form 1 – Application – DOC
  • Form 2 – Application for Urgent Case Order – DOC
  • Form 8 – Application for Witness Summons – DOC
  • Schedule 2 – Information for Witnesses – DOC
  • Form 12 – List of pending charges to be dealt with – DOC

The full list of all the criminal forms can be found here.


  • Form 1A – Affidavit – DOC
  • Form 1 – Entry for Trial – DOC
  • Form 3 – Outline of Submissions – DOC
  • Form 4A – Subpoena to give evidence – DOC
  • Form 4C – Subpoena to produce documents – DOC
  • Form 6 – Appeal notice – DOC
  • Form 7 – Service certificate – DOC

The full list of all the civil forms can be found here.

District Court Fees

A diagram of the standard procedures and the fees relating to each section can be found below.

Perth District Court Fees Schedule

Fees for each item are as follows:

  • Item 1 – Filing Writ
    • Fee for individual or eligible entity – $802.00
    • Fee for entity – $1565.00
    • Fee for eligible individual – $100.00
  • Item 6 – Entry for hearing
    • Fee for individual or eligible entity – $802.00
    • Fee for entity – $1565.00
    • Fee for eligible individual – $100.00
  • Item 7 – Allocation for hearing date
    • Fee for individual or eligible entity – $704.00
    • Fee for entity – $1833.00
    • Fee for eligible individual – $100.00
  • Item 8 – Daily hearing fee
    • Fee for individual or eligible entity – $704.00
    • Fee for entity – $1833.00
    • Fee for eligible individual – $100.00
  • Item 9 – Interlocutory applications/application for assessment of damages other than personal injury/application for summary judgement
    • Fee for individual or eligible entity – $201.00
    • Fee for entity – $392.00
    • Fee for eligible individual – $60.50
  • Item 11 – Tax costs lodgement
    • Fee for individual or eligible entity – $201.00
    • Fee for entity – $392.00
    • Fee for eligible individual – $60.50

You can find a full list of all the District Court fees here.

Click here to find out if you are an eligible entity or eligible individual.

District Court WA Decisions

Civil Decisions

If a judge has published their decision in the form of written reasons, from 1 January 2010, all of these civil decisions can be found online. Unless the judge has specifically ordered for the decision not to be available.

Most decisions, but not all, made before 1 January 2010, can be found online as well. Click here to find the decisions online.

Judges which deliver oral decisions, may not always be published in writing online. Either party in the case is entitled to a copy of the transcript in which the decision was read. If you are a member of the public, you can also request a copy of the transcript provided you are able to supply valid reasons.

To obtain a copy of a transcript of the District Court call (08) 9425 2416 or email

Criminal Decisions

Unlike in civil cases, only a small number of decisions relating to criminal matters are publicly available online.

You can follow the same procedure above in relation to obtaining a transcript if you wish to see the official reasoning and decision.

District Court Statistics

The most recently available statistics were published in August 2014. A full version can be found here.

Criminal Cases

Median Trial Delay – 25 weeks

Relating to the delay in a trail from the date a case is committed to the District Court. Best used to indicate how long it will take to obtain a trial.

Median Sentencing Delay – 16 weeks

The difference between the date of the last appearance in the Magistrates Court to sentencing.

Case Lodgements – 120-160/month

Case Finalisations – 120-150/month

Accused Cases on Hand – less than 1 year – 900

Accused Cases on Hand – between 1 and 2 years – 50-100

Accused Cases on Hand – more than 2 years – 10-20

Civil Cases

Median Time to Finalise Civil Non-Trial Matters – 15-25 weeks

As the majority of civil cases are finalised through an out of court settlement, there is no need for a trial.

Median Time to Finalise Civil Trial Matters – 50-60 weeks

Around 1% of civil cases are determined after trial.

Case Lodgements – 300-400/month

Case Finalisations – 300-400/month

Civil Cases on Hand – less than 6 months – 1,400-1,500

Civil Cases on Hand – 6 months to 1 year – 1,000

Civil Cases on Hand – 1 year to 2 years – 900-1,000

Civil Cases on Hand – more than 2 years – 400-500

WA District Court Location/Contact

District Court of Western Australia

Address: 500 Hay Street, Perth WA 6000
Phone: (08) 9425 2128
Emergency After Hours: (08) 6330 4033
Fax: (08) 9425 2268
Opening Hours: 9:00am – 4:00pm (M-F)