Fees owed to counsel - Summit Law Pty Ltd

Fri Jul 31 2009

Pursuant to s623(2) of the Legal Profession Act 2004 (NSW), Raymond John Collins has been appointed manager of the�law practice of Summit Law Pty Ltd, principally situated at Level 3, 255 Castlereagh Street, Sydney. Counsel with outstanding fees should contact Mr Collins as soon as possible. Whilst Mr Collins has advised that he would do his best to assist counsel owed fees, it is each counsel's responsibility to ensure the adequacy of his or her commercial arrangements with instructing solicitors. He may be contacted on: ph: (02) 9926 0240, fax: (02) 9926 0166 or via e-mail:

31 July 2009

Invitation to the Women in Law Dinner

Fri Jul 31 2009

The Women’s College and The Women Barristers Forum invite you to The Women in Law Dinner on Friday, 28 August 2009 at The Women’s College. The guest speakers will be the Honourable Acting Justice Jane Mathews AO and the Honourable Justice Julie Ward. Cocktails start at 6.00pm followed by dinner between 7.30 and 9.30pm. To RSVP and purchase tickets please visit the college's web site.

For more information please contact Jacinta Walpole on ph: 02 9517 5008, e-mail:

The bus leaves Martin Place at 5.30pm outside Sydney Hospital. Limited spaces are available. Cost: $85 per person, $800 corporate table of ten.

24 August 2009

Recent decisions of the House of Lords

Fri Jul 31 2009

Media bouquet for Indigenous Barristers Strategy

Thu Jul 30 2009

On 25 July _The Weekend Australian's _careers section (page 2) ran a story on the Bar Association's Indigenous Barristers Strategy, under the heading 'Mentoring ways help indigenous law students'. The story began as follows:

A mentoring scheme for Aboriginal law students conducted under the auspices of the NSW Bar Association aims to improve the balance between the number of indigenous legal practitioners and the percentage of Australians of Aboriginal descent. In NSW there are only four indigenous barristers among the 2500 licensed to practise. A more representative number would be 75. There are only seven indigenous barristers throughout Australia. This disappointingly small figure has not been lost on the NSW Bar Association, which began a strategy to address the situation almost a decade ago under the leadership of its president then, Ruth McColl.

A copy of the article may be obtained from the Bar Library.

30 July 2009

Australia to sign up for UN disabilities protocol

Thu Jul 30 2009

Attorney-General Robert McClelland and Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Children’s Services Bill Shorten today announced that Australia will accede to the Optional Protocol on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Learn more >

30 July 2009

Heather Ridout guest speaker at WLA Corporate Lunch

Thu Jul 30 2009

Members are invited to a lunch time seminar hosted by the Women Lawyers Association on Monday, 10 August 2009. The guest speaker will be Heather Ridout, chief executive of the Australian Industry Group and a leading figure in the public policy debate. Mrs Ridout will discuss current and emerging issues on the Australian policy agenda. Download a registration brochure.

30 July 2009

Refurbished Courtrooms and facilities on Level 9 Queens Square

Thu Jul 30 2009

The Supreme Court is pleased to announce that following the completion of the refurbishment of Level 9 at Queens Square, the courtrooms and public areas will be reopened on Monday, 3 August 2009. As well as a general upgrade to all the public areas and meeting rooms, the courtrooms themselves have been refurbished and equipped with new audio visual technology including TV monitors and microphones.

The court would be very pleased to receive any feedback that you may have in relation to the refurbished facilities. Please email your feedback to Nick Sanderson-Gough at the Supreme Court.

30 July 2009

Countdown to return match against the Vic Bar

Wed Jul 29 2009

Organisers have announced the touring squad for the New South Wales Bar football team, which will travel to Melbourne this Saturday, 5 September to defend the Suncorp Perpetual Trophy. They are (in no particular order): John Harris(c), David Patch, Penny Sibtain, Houda Younan, Colin Magee, Carlos Mobellan, Simon Philips, Greg Watkins, Gillian Mahony, Mark Gibian, David Stanton, Scott Goodman, Cameron Jackson, John Marshall SC and Anthony Lo Surdo. Nick Tiffen (clerk, 7 Selborne Chambers) will be the neutral referee for the match. Anthony Lo Surdo is always keen to hear from any members of the bar who would like to support the team. Enquiries should be directed to Anthony via DX 389 SYDNEY; ph: (02) 9223 3181; mob: 0407 015 945; Fax:� (02) 8028 6063.

1 September 2009�

Jury Directions: the final report by the VLRC

Wed Jul 29 2009

The final report by the Victorian Law Reform Commission on jury directions has been tabled in parliament today. While launching the report, Attorney General Hulls also announced the Victorian Government would release a discussion paper before the end of the year on broadening the jury pool, examining changes similar to those recently adopted in New South Wales.

"At the moment, a range of occupations are excluded from serving on juries, including judges, police officers, lawyers, bail justices, court reporters, office holders such as the auditor-general and ombudsman and members of parliament,” Mr Hulls said. "There is an argument that some of these professions could be considered eligible for jury duty to ensure our juries are as broadly representative as possible."

29 July 2000

Life membership presentation for The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG

Wed Jul 29 2009

The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG will be presented with life membership of the Bar Association at a ceremony in the Bar Common Room on Friday, 28 August 2009 at 5.15pm. Refreshments will be served. No RSVP is required.

The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG, who retired from the High Court on 2 February 2009, has been a member of the Bar Association since October 1967. At its meeting on 29 January 2009 Bar Council resolved that the Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG be made a life member for exceptional service to the profession of the law.

View the full list of life members of the Bar Association

27 August 2009

Bar Council business for 11 June 2009

Tue Jul 28 2009

Matters reported elsewhere in In Brief are omitted from this summary of Bar Council business. Bar Council regularly considers requests by the attorney general, the courts and other agencies for advice on proposed legislation. Because that advice is sought on a confidential basis, it is not noted in this summary. Any member interested in a particular matter should contact the executive director for further information.

President’s report

The president advised that in the past few weeks she had attended the following functions representing the association:

15 May 2009 – Welcome drinks for participants in the Bar Practice Course.

21 May 2009 – Opening of the new Banco Chambers in Chifley Square by Chief Justice Spigelman.

25 May 2009 – Swearing-in ceremony for the Hon Justice Michael Slattery at which the Hon John Hatzistergos MLC, attorney general, spoke on behalf of the bar.

26 May 2009 – Launch of 2009 Indigenous Literacy Project The president attended the launch at Customs House of the 2009 Indigenous Literacy Project.� The Indigenous Literacy Project is a partnership between the Australian Book Industry and The Fred Hollows Foundation. �

26 May 2009 – Meeting with Professor Gordon Parker of the Black Dog Institute. Mark Ierace SC and Cindy Penrose, the association’s project officer, had also been present.� They had discussed issues concerning the management of depression-related illness at the bar.

28 May 2009 – Memorial service for the late Paul Byrne SC The president advised that there had been a well attended function to celebrate the life of the late Paul Byrne SC. The president noted that the chief justice had graciously made the Banco Court available for the purpose and that the Bar Association had made the Common Room available for drinks after the Banco Court gathering. The costs of the evening were borne by some of Byrne’s friends. Bar Association staff donated their time to assist.

29 May 2009 – The president attended the Victorian Bar Association Bench and Bar Dinner and proposed a toast on behalf of the Australian Bar Association.

4 June 2009 – The first meeting of the 2009 Senior Counsel Selection Committee had been held in the morning.� That evening the president and Mark Ierace SC, a member of the 2008 Selection Committee, had presented an information seminar on the senior counsel selection process. The seminar was designed to inform barristers who are interested in applying for silk about the selection process.

Executive director’s report

The executive director advised that 2107 practising certificate renewal applications had been sent out.� As of a few minutes before the Bar Council meeting, 1544 renewal applications with payment had been processed. Staff had worked through the long weekend to process the documentation that had been received. The executive director asked that bar councillors do all they could to encourage barristers who had not yet returned their renewal documentation to do so as a matter of priority.

For consideration

Draft Submission to the National Human Rights Consultation

Bar Council resolved that the draft submission be adopted and forwarded to the National Human Rights Consultation Committee. The Bar Council asked that its thanks be conveyed to the following for the preparation of the submission.

Mark Ierace SC; Kate Eastman; Sarah Pritchard; Regina Graycar; Professor Andrew Byrnes; and Cindy Penrose. Application to the Professional Standards Council

Bar Council resolved that the draft application for the continuation of the association’s Professional Standards Scheme for the next five years be forwarded to the Professional Standards Council. The council expressed its appreciation for the work undertaken in relation to the application by the association’s projects officer, Jo Wilton.

Law Week Trial of the Barristers in Schools Programme

Bar Council noted the report of the Law Week trial of the Barristers in Schools Programme prepared by Margaret Cunneen SC and Karen Conte-Mills.

Bar Council resolved :

(a)�� �that the president write to the Minister for Education to provide a report of the Law Week trial and seek approval for the extension of the programme;

(b)�� �that the need for greater preparation time for students for individual sessions be raised and worked through with the Department of Education; and

(c)�� �that the Working Party on the Bar and the Community give consideration to the best method of training potential presenters, after which the association call for expressions of interest from the bar.

The Bar Council asked that its thanks be communicated to Margaret Cunneen SC, Karen Conte-Mills and Andrew Martin for presenting the programme so successfully during Law Week.

28 July 2009

Constitutional law seminars for 2009-2010

Tue Jul 28 2009

The Australian Association of Constitutional Law has just released its program of seminars for 2009-2010, beginning with a forum on 22 September on Pape v Commissioner of Taxation of the Commonwealth of Australia [2009] HCA 23. For details of the seminars and membership, click here.

28 July 2009

You are invited to the inaugural Common Law Dinner

Mon Jul 27 2009

It was on 26 August 1928 that Mrs May Donoghue drank ginger beer from a tumbler which, it was claimed, contained the remains of a decomposed snail. To mark the occasion of the 81st anniversary of this momentous event in the history of the common law, the Bar Association� invites members to attend the inaugural Common Law Dinner, to be held on the evening of Friday, 28 August at the Bond Cafe on Phillip Street. It will be an opportunity for members to relax and share stories in a pleasant and convivial atmosphere. An informal talk will be given by the Hon Justice Hoeben AM RFD. Download your registration form>

17 August 2009

Fast Track Directions in the Federal Court

Mon Jul 27 2009

The chief justice of the Federal Court issued Practice Note No 30: Fast Track Directions (‘the Fast Track Directions’) on 24 April 2009. The aim of the Fast Track Directions is to provide a framework in which cases may be heard and finalised within five to eight months from the date of filing (depending on their complexity), and to reduce costs by limiting discovery and avoiding lengthy interlocutory disputes. Urgent cases may be finalised sooner. Each District Registry of the Court has now issued an Administrative Notice setting out the arrangements to support the Fast Track Directions.�

27 July 2009

Diarise for next week: address by DPP Nick Cowdery QC

Mon Jul 27 2009

The NSW Council for Civil Liberties invites members to a lunch with an address by Nick Cowdery QC on Friday, 14 August 2009:� "Prosecutors Do Care about Human Rights - Really!" Mr Cowdery will talk about the role of prosecutors in the promotion and protection of human rights, with some illustrations and examples from recent events in NSW. If "the price of liberty is eternal vigilance", this is no time to deflect our attention away from what is happening in Macquarie Street!

When? Friday 14 August 2009 at 12.30pm Where? Members Dining Room, Parliament House, Macquarie St, Sydney Cost? $80 CCL members, $90 non-members (GST inclusive) Please RSVP no later than Monday, 3 August 2009.

7 August 2009

Chief justice to head inquiry in the Caribbean

Mon Jul 27 2009

The state government has announced that Chief Justice Spigelman will head a major corruption inquiry in Antigua and Barbuda. In his place, the president of the New South Wales Court of Appeal, Justice James Allsop, will act as chief justice. Learn more >

27 July 2009

Diarise for next week: swearing in ceremony for John North

Fri Jul 24 2009

A ceremonial sitting for the swearing-in of John North as a judge of the District Court of New South Wales will be held on Wednesday, 29 July 2009 at 9.30am in Court 21A of John Maddison Tower. Sandy Street SC will speak on behalf of the bar.

24 July 2009

ALRC inquiry into family violence

Fri Jul 24 2009

Commonwealth Attorney-General Robert McClelland has announced the terms of reference for an inquiry to address issues concerning violence against women and their children. The ALRC will focus on a number of matters, including: the interaction in practice of state and territory family violence and child protection laws with the Family Law Act 1975 and relevant Commonwealth, state and territory criminal laws; and the impact of inconsistent interpretation or application of laws in cases of sexual assault occurring in a family violence context, including rules of evidence, on victims of such violence. The commission has welcomed the inquiry and will report no later than 31 July 2010.

24 July 2009

Searching the In Brief archive

Fri Jul 24 2009

_Forgotten the date for an important seminar? Do you have that nagging feeling about an important new practice note? _In Brief, the Bar Association's news and current awareness bulletin, has published more than 2000 articles on a diverse range of subjects, such as appointments, funeral notices, calls for submissions, notable speeches, new practice notes and important legislation. Searching for individual In Brief articles is now easy, thanks to� a search box on the Bar Association's home page. Give it a try!

25 August 2009

Caselaw has more appeal

Fri Jul 24 2009

Did You Know?� There is one web site where you can find High Court appeal outcomes for all NSW Court of Appeal and Court of Criminal Appeal judgments since 2007. All judgments that have been subject to a High Court appeal application have been 'noted up' based on the outcome. Simply use NSW Caselaw� to find the judgment you are interested in.�

Colour coded notations appear next to the judgment title to indicate the status of the judgment.� Click on the judgment citation to view its details. An explanation of the notations is on the right-hand side of the NSW Caselaw Court of Appeal and Court of Criminal Appeal webpages.� �

For more information, contact NSW Caselaw via email at

24 July 2009

Diarise for next week: Blackstone at the Bar and Bench

Thu Jul 23 2009

The Francis Forbes Society for Australian Legal History, the Selden Society, Macquarie University and the New South Wales Bar Association are proud to present a lecture by Professor Emeritus Wilfred Prest on 'Blackstone at the Bar and Bench' on Wednesday, 5 August 2009 at 5.15pm. Registration is not required. For more information, please contact Stephanie Mancell at or ph: (02) 9229 1722.

31 July 2009