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Differences between reported and unreported judgements

Unreported judgments are generally the order of court which has not been published according to the report of The University of Adelaide.

Due to large number of case and innumerable citations the Court the established differences between published or unpublished, or reported and unreported judgments so as to make easy for learned advocates, and Hon’ble Judges to follow up the valuable precedents.

The Court disposes an appeal either in the manner of an opinion, or an order. The opinion of the Hon’ble Court is essential and an obligatory requirement of the lower Court to follow, and therefore all the opinions of the Court are Published, whereas, an ‘Order’ is an equity or an process towards end of justice in reference to the particular case, and therefore they are unpublished. Published opinions are printed and distributed and are available for unlimited citations, while an unpublished order, in general, are not cited or used as precedent except to support a claim of res judicata, collateral estoppels, or law with reference to particular case.

The Court, in general, follows some guidelines to publish an opinion instead of issue an order. Some of those guidelines are listed below as established in LexisNexis;

The decision of the Court which;

  • Established a new, changes an existing, rule of law;
  • Involves an issue of continuing public interest;
  • Criticises or questions existing law;
  • Constitutes a significant and non-duplicative contribution to the legal literature by historical review of law;
  • Reserves a judgment or denies enforcement of order when the lower court or agency has published an opinion supporting the judgment or order;

However, unreported judgments are not good citations, but can be accessed through official circulations, while reported Judgments are established principles which are obligatory on the lower court.

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