During a Guardianship Division hearing
At the Guardianship Division, we try to make the hearing as relaxed as possible, particularly for the person who is the subject of the application. We know that coming to a hearing can be a new experience for everyone concerned - the person the hearing is about, the applicant, the persons family and friends.
Use the following NCAT resources to learn what to expect at a guardianship hearing.
When you arrive at NCAT
You will need to provide your name to the reception counter and advise which hearing you are attending.
Please wait in the reception area until a Tribunal Member invites you into the hearing room.
The Tribunal Members will welcome everyone and introduce themselves. Everyone will be asked their names and their relationship to the person who is the subject of the application.
Most Guardianship Division hearings are conducted by a panel of three Tribunal Members. Members are appointed on the basis of their particular expertise:
Senior Members (Legal) are Australian lawyers of at least seven years standing,
Senior Member (Professional) are persons who have special knowledge, skill or expertise and have experience in assessing or treating persons with disabilities, and
General Member (Community) are persons who have special knowledge, skill or expertise and have professional or personal experience with people with disability.
Each hearing proceeds in its own way, depending on the needs of the person who is the subject of the application.
Generally the person the application is about will be asked their views about the application. Sometimes this will be done in private without the other parties and witnesses. The applicant and other parties will be given the opportunity to give evidence, express their views, and present their case.
The Tribunal Members may give their decision on the day of the hearing or may reserve the decision. Reserving the decision means that the decision will be provided at a later time and generally in writing.
The Tribunal Members will consider the relevant written evidence that has been provided. The Tribunal may also take evidence from those attending the hearing, most importantly from the person the application is about. Parties and witnesses may attend the hearing or give evidence over the telephone or by videoconference, if necessary.
After considering the evidence, and if satisfied that the person does not have the capacity to make decisions, the Tribunal decides if a guardian and/or financial manager is required and who should be appointed.
Applications for consent to medical or dental treatment may be heard by a panel consisting of less than three Tribunal Members. NCAT may consent to the treatment if it is minor or major and there is no person responsible, or the patient is objecting to the proposed treatment. Learn more about consent to medical or dental treatment.
A panel of three Tribunal Members must hear an application for special medical treatment.