Demand the court provide proof of Assent and Proclamation

governor-general-large

Section 143 of the Evidence Act 1995 (Cth):

Part 4.2Judicial notice – 143  Matters of law

(1)  Proof is not required about the provisions and coming into operation (in whole or in part) of:

  • (a)  an Act, a State Act, an Act or Ordinance of a Territory or an Imperial Act in force in Australia; or
  • (b)  a regulation, rule or by‑law made, or purporting to be made, under such an Act or Ordinance; or
  • (c)  a Proclamation or order of the Governor‑General, the Governor of a State or the Administrator or Executive of a Territory made, or purporting to be made, under such an Act or Ordinance; or
  • (d)  an instrument of a legislative character (for example, a rule of court) made, or purporting to be made, under such an Act or Ordinance, being an instrument that is required by or under a law to be published, or the making of which is required by or under a law to be notified, in any government or official gazette (by whatever name called).

             (2)  A judge may inform himself or herself about those matters in any way that the judge thinks fit.

             (3)  A reference in this section to an Act, being an Act of an Australian Parliament, includes a reference to a private Act passed by that Parliament.

Note:  Section 5 extends the operation of this provision to proceedings in all Australian courts.

150 Seals and signatures:

(1)  If the imprint of a seal appears on a document and purports to be the imprint of:

  • (a)  a Royal Great Seal; or
  • (b)  the Great Seal of Australia; or
  • (c)  another seal of the Commonwealth; or
  • (d)  a seal of a State, a Territory or a foreign country; or
  • (e)  the seal of a body (including a court or a tribunal), or a body corporate, established by a law of the Commonwealth, a Territory or a foreign country; or
  • (f)  the seal of a court or tribunal established by a law of a State;

it is presumed, unless the contrary is proved, that the imprint is the imprint of that seal, and the document was duly sealed as it purports to have been sealed.

(2)  If the imprint of a seal appears on a document and purports to be the imprint of the seal of an office holder, it is presumed, unless the contrary is proved, that:

  • (a)  the imprint is the imprint of that seal; and
  • (b)  the document was duly sealed by the office holder acting in his or her official capacity; and
  • (c)  the office holder held the relevant office when the document was sealed.

(3)  If a document purports to have been signed by an office holder in his or her official capacity, it is presumed, unless the contrary is proved, that:

  • (a)  the document was signed by the office holder acting in that capacity; and
  • (b)  the office holder held the relevant office when the document was signed.

(4)  In this section: “office holder” means:

  • (a)  the Sovereign; or
  • (b)  the Governor-General; or
  • (c)  the Governor of a State; or
  • (d)  the Administrator of a Territory; or
  • (e)  a person holding any other office under an Australian law or a law of a foreign country.

(5)  This section extends to documents sealed, and documents signed, before the commencement of this section.

Note:  Section 5 extends the operation of this provision to proceedings in all Australian courts.

153 Gazettes and other official documents:

(1)  It is presumed, unless the contrary is proved, that a document purporting:

  • (a) to be any government or official gazette (by whatever name called) of the Commonwealth, a State, a Territory or a foreign country; or
  • (b)  to have been printed by the Government Printer or by the government or official printer of a State or Territory; or
  • (c)  to have been printed by authority of the government or administration of the Commonwealth, a State, a Territory or a foreign country;

is what it purports to be and was published on the day on which it purports to have been published.

(2)  If:

(a)  there is produced to a court:

  • (i)  a copy of any government or official gazette (by whatever name called) of the Commonwealth, a State, a Territory or a foreign country; or
  • (ii)  a document that purports to have been printed by the Government Printer or by the government or official printer of a State or Territory; or
  • (iii)  a document that purports to have been printed by authority of the government or administration of the Commonwealth, a State, a Territory or a foreign country; and

(b)  the doing of an act:

  • (i)  by the Governor-General or by the Governor of a State or the Administrator of a Territory; or
  • (ii)  by a person authorised or empowered to do the act by an Australian law or a law of a foreign country;

is notified or published in the copy or document; it is presumed, unless the contrary is proved, that the act was duly done and, if the day on which the act was done appears in the copy or document, it was done on that day.

Note: Section 5 extends the operation of this provision to proceedings in all Australian courts.

Section 5 of the Evidence Act 1995 (Cth):

Extended application of certain provisions

The provisions of this Act referred to in the Table apply to all proceedings in an Australian court, including proceedings that:

  • (a)  relate to bail; or
  • (b)  are interlocutory proceedings or proceedings of a similar kind; or
  • (c)  are heard in chambers; or
  • (d)  relate to sentencing.
TABLE
Provisions of this Act Subject matter
Subsection 70(2) Evidence of tags and labels in Customs prosecutions and Excise prosecutions
Section 143 Matters of law
Section 150 Seals and signatures
Section 153 Gazettes and other official documents
Section 154 Documents published by authority of Parliaments etc.
Section 155 Official records
Section 155A Commonwealth documents
Section 157 Public documents relating to court processes
Section 158 Evidence of certain public documents
Section 159 Official statistics
Section 163 Proof of letters having been sent by Commonwealth agencies
Section 182 Commonwealth records, postal articles sent by Commonwealth agencies and certain Commonwealth documents

Note: Australian court is defined in the Dictionary to cover all courts in Australia. The definition extends to persons and bodies that take evidence or that are required to apply the laws of evidence.


The States

Section 143 of the Evidence Act 2008 (Vic):

Part 4.2—Judicial notice – 143 Matters of law

(1) Proof is not required about the provisions and coming into operation (in whole or in part) of—

  • (a) an Act, an Imperial Act in force in Australia, a Commonwealth Act, an Act of another State or an Act or Ordinance of a Territory; or
  • (b) a regulation, rule or by-law made, or purporting to be made, under such an Act or Ordinance; or
  • (c) a proclamation or order of the Governor-General, the Governor of a State or the Administrator or Executive of a Territory made, or purporting to be made, under such an Act or Ordinance; or
  • (d) an instrument of a legislative character (for example, a rule of court) made, or purporting to be made, under such an Act or Ordinance, being an instrument that is required by or under a law to be published, or the making of which is required by or under a law to be notified, in any government or official gazette (by whatever name called).

(2) A judge may inform himself or herself about those matters in any way that the judge thinks fit.

(3) A reference in this section to an Act, being an Act of an Australian Parliament, includes a reference to a private Act passed by that Parliament.

Note: Section 5 of the Commonwealth Act extends the operation of the equivalent Commonwealth section to proceedings in all Australian courts.

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