Victoria's court system will be hit by further delays and appearances will become electronic as efforts to limit the coronavirus spread escalate.
Criminal trials in Victoria's Supreme Court will be pushed back to October as part of changes announced to minimise in-person court appearances.
Any trials listed before mid-May this year will be pushed back, Chief Justice Anne Ferguson said on Friday.
Cases without juries including pre-sentence hearings will still go ahead, with video links where available and social distancing to minimise contact.
All Court of Appeal hearings will be held by videolink and where agreed, cases will be decided on written submissions.
Civil cases will proceed as judge-alone cases without juries, while new lawyers will be admitted to practise in a written process as an alternative to the usual ceremonies which were suspended last week.
In the County Court, it's been announced that new jury trials are unlikely to begin before October.
Some pre-sentence hearings and sentences will be brought forward.
Chief Judge Peter Kidd announced the number of people allowed in courtrooms would be limited and appearances would be staggered to minimise crowding.
He described COVID-19 as "the most challenging crisis in recent memory".
Victoria's Childrens Court will prioritise urgent matters including bail applications and cases where children are in custody.
Where children are not on bail or in custody, cases will be adjourned for 12 weeks.
Magistrates Court contested committals - used to test the strength of evidence before a trial - that were scheduled to begin in the next seven weeks will be adjourned.
Earlier Justice Ferguson said civil and criminal matters in all courts and the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal would move toward electronic management.
Pilots will begin immediately.
"Not all courts have the technical capability yet, but considerable work is underway to build that as soon as possible," she said.
"The situation is fluid and moving fast and while we cannot predict what may happen with COVID-19 in the immediate future we will continue to move to a more agile and flexible environment."