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Latest cases marked reportable by the Council for Law Reporting

Wed Oct 31 2007

The following is a list of cases received and marked reportable by the Council of Law Reporting for New South Wales:

Mullins v Lillyman [2007] NSWSC 407 (Buddin J) (02.05.07) (CLD 14815/2006)

Zorom Enterprises Pty Ltd v Zabow and Others [2007] NSWCA 106 (CA) (04.05.07) (40477/2006

Australian Hardboards Ltd v Hudson Investment Group Ltd [2007] NSWCA 104 (CA) (04.05.07) (40570/2006)

Valceski and Another v Valceski and Another [2007] NSWSC 440 (Brereton J) (04.05.07) (ED 6133/2006)

31 October 2007

New Legal Services Act for England and Wales

Wed Oct 31 2007

The UK Parliament has passed the Legal Services Bill 2006-2007. The object of the Bill, as expressed in the explanatory notes, is to�establish a new framework for the regulation of legal services in England and Wales. It makes provision for:

>> The establishment of the Legal Services Board: a single oversight body, independent from both government and approved regulators (Bar Council and Law Society)

>> The establishment of an independent Office for Legal Complaints (OLC): a body with statutory power to handle complaints about services provided by persons subject to oversight regulation by the Board, and to award redress in appropriate circumstances. It is expected to address concerns about the quality, independence, and consistency of complaints handling by the legal professions.

>> Alternative Business Structures (ABS) will enable lawyers and non-lawyers to work together on an equal footing to deliver legal and other services. External investment will be possible, and new business structures are expected to give legal providers greater flexibility to respond to market demands, within the UK and overseas. Licences will be conferred by licensing authorities and various safeguards will be in place.

Visit the UK Parliament's web site to view the Bill, explanatory notes and all information related to its progress >

31 October 2007

Legal Aid Commission appointment

Wed Oct 31 2007

Expressions of interest are sought for appointment to the Civil Law Sub-Committee of the Board of Legal Aid NSW, pursuant to s68 of the Legal Aid Commission Act 1979.� This nominee, together with the Law Society of New South Wales nominee, will provide the Legal Aid NSW Board with expert advice.

Please send expressions of interest to Cindy Penrose�at the Bar Association.

6 November 2007 �

Request for Information regarding the Corrective Services Department

Wed Oct 31 2007

Representatives of the legal profession, including the Bar Association, Public Defenders, New South Wales Law Society, NSW Legal Aid Commission and the Aboriginal Legal Service, are now meeting on a regular basis with the Department of Corrective Services in order to address many issues of concern to practitioners.� These include visiting hours, facilities, information about lock-downs, protocols for visits (for example, what can and cannot be taken into prisons), minimum safety standards, telephone communications, video-conferencing and use of “law clerks”.���

It would facilitate this process if members who have experienced specific problems in their dealings with the Department of Corrective Services in relation to such matters, or have specific constructive suggestions, passed them on in writing to the Criminal Law Committee (attention: Cindy Penrose�at the�NSW Bar Association) if possible by 9 November.

7 November 2007

Review of UK judicial appointments process

Tue Oct 30 2007

The UK Ministry of Justice�has published a consultation paper on judicial appointments. The Governance of Britain: Judicial Appointments seeks views on whether the role of the independent Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) is appropriate, or whether more�should be done to limit ministerial involvement.

View the report>

30 October 2007

Diarise for next week: swearing in ceremony for Greg Keating

Tue Oct 30 2007

Gregory Michael Keating will be sworn in as a District Court judge on Tuesday, 6 November, 2007 at 9.30 am in Court 21A John Maddison Tower, level 21, 86-90 Goulburn Street. Attorney General Hatzistergos will speak on behalf of the Bar.

30 October 2007

Online Court in the Common Law Division

Tue Oct 30 2007

Online courts are now available in the Common Law Division.�The types of matters suitable for an Online Court include relatively straightforward matters where all parties are legally represented, for example consent directions. The service is available only to legal practitioners (and support staff nominated to post messages on the practitioner’s behalf), not to litigants or non-parties. Learn more >

30 October 2007

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Web update: The Guantanamo Testimonials Project

Tue Oct 30 2007

The Center for the Study of Human Rights in the Americas (CSHRA) at the University of California, Davis, has launched The Guant�namo Testimonials Project. The goal is to gather testimonies of prisoner abuse in Guant�namo, organise them by the source of the testimonies given and by the type of the abuse alleged.

Visit the Guantanamo Testimonials Project>

30 October 2007

Papers to note: Some Legal Aspects of Climate Change

Mon Oct 29 2007

On Wednesday, 24 October, the Bar Association hosted a CPD seminar on legal aspects of climate change. Michael Slattery QC chaired the�seminar and papers were presented by the Hon Murray Wilcox QC and Dr Jane McAdam. The seminar examined emission trading rights, climate-induced displacement and other significant legal issues likely to arise out of climate change.

View the paper by Dr Jane McAdam >� |� View the paper by the Hon Murray Wilcox QC>

29 October 2007

Speeches to note: McKenzie Stuart Lecture, Cambridge University

Mon Oct 29 2007

On�25 October 2007 Britain's lord chancellor and secretary of state for justice, Jack Straw, laid out plans for the future of British human rights legislation in the annual Mackenzie Stuart Lecture at Cambridge University's Faculty of Law. In the speech, he said, "If you read certain newspapers you might be forgiven for thinking that human rights were an alien imposition foisted upon us by 'the other'. It is a misconception that has regrettably taken root."

"A central theme of my lecture this evening is to explode this myth, and to demonstrate how far from being some European imposition, Britain has been at the forefront of the political and legal development of human rights across Europe and across the world", he said.

View the McKenzie Stuart Lecture>

29 October 2007

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Unprofessional conduct earns rebuke from Ohio Supreme Court

Mon Oct 29 2007

The Ohio Supreme Court has overturned a record-breaking $30 million medical malpractice award, citing, among other courtroom misbehavior, a theatrical closing argument by the controversial Michigan attorney representing the brain-injured plaintiff.

Attorney Geoffrey Fieger's courtroom antics, including his assumption at closing of the persona of his client, when he allegedly was an oxygen-deprived baby during the delivery process, were inappropriate and tainted the jury's decision, the supreme court held yesterday in a 6-1 ruling.

At one point, while in character as the baby, Fieger told the jury: "Doctors, nurses, I'm suffocating. Please help me to be born. I want to play baseball. I want to hug my mother. I want to tell her that I love her. Help me." Learn more>

29 October 2007

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Employment Opportunity: Public Interest Law Clearing House (Vic) Inc

Mon Oct 29 2007

The Public Interest Law Clearing House (PILCH), a leading not-for-profit organisation in the Victorian legal sector, is seeking applications for an all encompassing senior level operations role supporting the executive director.

PILCH is currently the largest facilitator of pro bono resources in Australia, and is committed to furthering the public interest, improving access to justice and protecting human rights by facilitating the provision of pro bono legal services and undertaking law reform, policy work and legal education. In carrying out its mission, PILCH specifically seeks to address disadvantage and marginalisation in the community, to effect structural change to address injustice, to foster a strong pro bono culture in Victoria and to increase the pro bono capacity of the legal profession.

Operations Manager

Financial management including budget analysis and financial reporting; organisational development and evaluation of services; assisting with coordination of current projects and establishment of new projects and; assisting with recruitment and professional development and training of staff.

The candidate for the position should have excellent financial management skills (accounting degree preferred but not essential), experience in project development and evaluation and an understanding and interest in the legal, community and access to justice sectors.

Download the full position description and selection criteria>

Applications, including CV, covering letter and response to the selection criteria, should be submitted to the Executive Director, Public Interest Law Clearing House (Vic) Inc, Level 1, 550 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne, VIC 3000 or by e-mail to rachel.brown@pilch.org.au by 12 November 2007. Please direct inquiries about the position to Rachel Brown at PILCH on (03) 9225 6680.

29 October 2007

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Best Practice Guides for administrative decision makers

Mon Oct 29 2007

The Administrative�Review Council publishes _Best Practice Guides,�_a�five-part series�covering all key stages in the administrative decision-making process.

The subject areas covered by the Best Practice Guides are:

For�further information about the ARC or the Guides,�visit the Administrative Research Council web site or contact the secretariat on ph: (02) 6250 5800 or via e-mail: arc.can@ag.gov.au

30�October 2007

Appointment of silk in Victoria

Fri Oct 26 2007

There will be�a general meeting of counsel of the Victorian Bar on 1 November 2007. The following proposed motions regarding the appointment of senior counsel will be discussed.

For additional background information, download 'The Appointment of Senior Counsel in Victoria: Summary of Current Process' by the chief justice of Victoria and the Victorian Supreme Court's consultation document on the senior counsel selection process.

26 October 2007

Reminder: Lions in Conflict: Bacon, Coke and Ellesmere - Treason and Unity, by Chief Justice Spigelman

Fri Oct 26 2007

You are invited to�Chief Justice Spigelman’s second lecture in his series: “Lions in Conflict: Bacon, Coke and Ellesmere - Treason and Unity". It will�take place�on Wednesday, 14 November 2007 at the Banco Court,�Level 13, Law Courts Building, Queens Square at�5.30 pm.�

The first lecture may be found at (2006-2007) 28 Aust Bar Rev 254 or�the Supreme Court web site.

13�November�2007

Appointment of acting judges of the Supreme Court

Fri Oct 26 2007

The following persons have been appointed as acting judges of the Supreme Court of New South Wales for the periods shown:

>> the Hon Justice Biscoe: 5 November 2007 to 30 November 2007 >> his Honour Judge Walmsley SC: 5 November 2007 to 14 December 2007 >> his Honour Judge Berman SC: 5 November 2007 to 14 December 2007

26 October 2007

Events to diarise: Great Bar Boat Race and 2008 Bench and Bar Dinner

Thu Oct 25 2007

2007 Great Bar Boat Race The date for the 2007 Great Bar Boat Race has been confirmed as Monday, 17 December. The Registration Form will be sent via In Brief next week.� � 2008 Bench and Bar Dinner The 2008 Bench and Bar will be held on Friday, 9 May 2008 at the Hilton Sydney.

25 October 2007

Legislation to note: Jury Amendment Bill 2007

Thu Oct 25 2007

The Jury Amendment Bill 2007 was introduced in the Legislative Assembly on 23 October. The object of this Bill, as stated in the explanatory notes,�is to amend the _Jury Act 1977 _to:

(a) enable up to 3 additional jurors to be selected for certain criminal trials in the Supreme Court or District Court, and (b) ensure that only 12 members of a jury that is expanded with additional jurors may retire to consider the jury’s verdict.

View the Bill >� |� View the explanatory notes >� |� View the agreement in principle speech>

25 October 2007

Speeches to note: Mergers and Acquisitions 2007, by the Hon Justice RP Austin

Thu Oct 25 2007

The Hon Justice Austin, in�a speech delivered yesterday at the University of New South Wales, has spoken about private equity transactions, specifically the issue of executive directors of the target participating in a bidding consortium, as well as�some current issues in merger schemes. In doing so, the judge discussed�the current state of Australian statutory company law and in particular, what he describes as "a deplorable trend in the drafting of legislative amendments".

View the speech>

25 October 2007

Reminder: Legal aid conference on this afternoon

Thu Oct 25 2007

The Bar Council, together with the Legal Aid Commission of NSW, has decided to convene a legal aid conference that will consider the present and future relationship between the commission and the profession.

The conference will be held�today, 29 October from 4.30pm - 6.30pm in the Bar Association Common Room. Michael Slattery QC will introduce the session, with Geoff Lindsay SC acting as chair. Speakers include Bill Grant, director, Legal Aid NSW, Brian Sandland, director, criminal law, Legal Aid NSW, Anita Anderson, director, grants, Legal Aid NSW, Tim Game SC, Phillip Boulten SC and Nicole Caroll.

Download a conference flyer>

29�October 2007

2007 Bar Council elections and AGM

Thu Oct 25 2007

Ballot papers for the election of the 2008 Bar Council have been mailed to all those eligible to vote. Members should take care to complete the ballot paper in accordance with the instructions provided.� If any member has a query concerning the completion of the ballot paper they should contact the Bar Association for assistance. The ballot closes at 1.00pm on Friday 2 November 2007. The AGM will be held at 1.00pm in the Common Room. More information >

31�October 2007

Memorial service for Mr Peter Twigg

Wed Oct 24 2007

The Family Court of Australia will hold a memorial service to honour Mr Peter Twigg, a solicitor advocate who appeared in the family law jurisdiction for in excess of 50 years, who�passed away recently.

The brief sitting will be held at 9.45 am on Thursday, 25 October 2007 in Court 7B, Goulburn Street, to mark his passing and his contribution to the jurisdiction.

24 October 2007

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Crown Law Officers Legislation enters the lower house: Greg Smith MP

Wed Oct 24 2007

The Crown Law Officers Legislation Amendment (Abolition of Life Tenure) Bill 2007 has been introduced in the lower house. The shadow attorney general, Greg Smith MP,�described the "wilful blindness, sheer incompetence or blatant political prejudice that is driving the Iemma government to undermine the independence that successive directors of public prosecutions and crown prosecutors have enjoyed in this state for over 20 years".

View the Hansard proofs of the�agreement in principle speech by�Mr Greg Smith MP>

25 October 2007