Commonwealth Public Interest and Test Cases Scheme

Fri Aug 14 2009

How many test cases has the Commonwealth Government funded during the past 10 years? In response to an Opposition question on notice in the Senate, the Attorney General's Department's Legal Assistance Branch says it has approved funding for 75 matters (as at 16 June 2009) under the Commonwealth Public Interest and Test Cases Scheme (CPITC) out of 194 applications. Learn more>

14 August 2009

Web watch: the Sydney Electronic Text and Image Service (SETIS)

Fri Aug 14 2009

The Sydney Electronic Text and Image Service (SETIS) is a scholarly electronic publishing and digital library service, which contains, among other things, important texts, images and digital theses. Of interest to barristers would be: the Australian Federation Full Text Database, which includes the full text of the Federation Debates of the 1890s, participants accounts and images; and Classic Texts in Australian and International Taxation Law

14 August 2009 ��������

Fri Aug 14 2009

CHOICE wants consumers to be more aware of their rights to help avoid being overcharged by lawyers, and, if they feel they have been ripped off, to know who to complain to try and resolve the issue.


QUT and WIPO to launch new IP degree (ADVERTISEMENT)

Fri Aug 14 2009

The Queensland University of Technology's Faculty of Law invites members to attend the launch of its newest degree, the Master of Intellectual Property Law, which will be run as a joint venture with the World Intellectual Property Organization. The launch will take place on Thursday, 27 August 2009 at 6.00pm in the Sofitel Hotel, Sydney. The Attorney-General Robert McClelland will deliver an address on "How globalisation requires us to rethink our intellectual property laws". Learn more>

13 August 2009


Appointment to the Family Court of Australia

Fri Aug 14 2009

Attorney-General Robert McClelland has announced the appointment of Mr Simon Moncrieff SC to the Family Court of Australia. Mr Moncrieff is the president of the Family Law Practitioners Association of Western Australia. Learn more>

14 August 2009

NSW Trustee and Guardian - What has Changed and Issues in Common (ADVERTISEMENT)

Thu Aug 13 2009

The Hon Justice Ian Gzell, chairman of the Sydney branch of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP), invites you to an address by Matt Daley (parter at Clayton Utz) and Mike Hawkins (chief investment officer, Evans and Partners) on "Trustees Investment Powers, Learning Post the GFC". The address will take place on Wednesday, 19 May 2010 at 5.30pm sharp at Clayton Utz, 1 O'Connell Street, Sydney. Refreshments will be served at 7.00pm. For more information, or to register, download a flyer>

19 May 2010

Papers to note: mixed results for forum sentencing

Thu Aug 13 2009

New research by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research shows that offenders dealt with under the Forum Sentencing scheme are no less likely to re-offend than offenders dealt with in a conventional court proceeding. The director of the Bureau, Dr Don Weatherburn, said in a media release today that there is only limited evidence that restorative justice programmes reduce recidivism. "Many of the individuals referred to Forum Sentencing have substantial criminal records, dating back in many cases to their teenage years. Entrenched patterns of criminal behaviour are difficult to change without a sustained effort to alter the factors that keep them involved in crime", said Dr Weatherburn. The report was published in the June edition of the Crime and Justice Bulletin. Visit the BOCSAR web site to learn more>

13 August 2009

New advisory board for Migration Agents Registration Authority

Thu Aug 13 2009

The Law Council of Australia will be among the organisations with a representative on the new advisory board of the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (MARA). The board, to be chaired by former lawyer and secretary of the Attorney-General’s Department, Robert Cornall, was announced today by Senator Chris Evans, the minister for immigration and citizenship. Learn more >

13 August 2009

Public consultation on national security legislation

Thu Aug 13 2009

Attorney-General Robert McClelland has released for public consultation the Australian Government’s Discussion Paper on National Security Legislation. Submissions will be accepted until 25 September 2009. The discussion paper, together with the National Security Legislation Amendment Exposure Draft Bill and the attorney's ministerial statement may be obtained from the Attorney-General's Department web site.

Submissions should be forwarded to:

Discussion Paper – National Security Legislation Assistant Secretary Security Law Branch Attorney-General’s Department 3-5 National Circuit BARTON� ACT� 2600

Submissions may also be submitted electronically to or by facsimile to (02) 6141 3048.�

All submissions and the names of persons or organisations who make a submission will be treated as public, and may be published on the department’s web site, unless the author clearly indicates to the contrary.

13 August 2009

New appointments to the Local Court

Thu Aug 13 2009

Ms Ellen Lucy Skinner and Mr Glenn Kevin Walsh have been appointed as magistrates of the Local Court of New South Wales commencing on and from 24 August 2009.� View the attorney general's announcement > A swearing-in ceremony will be held at 9am on Monday, 24 August in Court room 5.2 of the Downing Centre. Robert Sutherland SC will speak on behalf of the bar.

13 August 2009

NSW Government to review its Charter of Victims Rights

Wed Aug 12 2009

Attorney General John Hatzistergos has announced a review of the NSW Charter of Victims Rights. The review, being conducted by the Department of Justice and Attorney General, will examine how the charter may be improved including whether the current definition of a victim is adequate under the Victims Rights Act. The review is seeking submissions from victims, families and friends of victims, victims groups, service providers, lawyers and the wider community.

Shadow Attorney General Greg Smith SC has warned the government not to give the impression that "victims will have the final say in whether cases proceed to trial".�

"The DPP Office carries the responsibility and ethical duty to make decisions based on principle rather than emotion. Prosecutors are acutely conscious of, and never disregard, the suffering and hurt experienced by victims of crime and their family and friends," Mr Smith said.

Download a copy of the consultation paper on the NSW Charter of Victims Rights. Submissions close on 4 September 2009.��

12 August 2009

Invitation to a forum on judicial values (ADVERTISEMENT)

Wed Aug 12 2009

The Sydney Writers' Festival, in conjunction with the Julius Stone Institute, University of Sydney, and Monash University present a forum on "Judicial Values: Should judges just apply the law, or should they bring their own values to the task?" The forum, to be hosted by Damien Carrick, from Radio National's The Law Report, will take place between 5.30pm and 7pm on Thursday, 27 August at the New Law Building at the University of Sydney's Camperdown Campus (next to Fisher Library). Places are strictly limited to 100 seats.

Guest Speakers

Bernhard Schlink, former judge, professor of law, and author of The Reader The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG, former justice of the High Court of Australia Professor Reg Graycar, Sydney Law School Professor Justin Malbon, Monash University


Full Fee: $35 inc GST Concession: $15 inc GST

Register Online

For further information and registration please click here and follow the links to the online registration form.

12 August 2009

New titles in the Bar Library

Tue Aug 11 2009

The Bar Library has added 24 new titles into its collection.

M570.A1/CHO/2008 Abuse of process and judicial stays of criminal proceedings / Andrew L-T Choo, Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2nd ed, 2008��

N33.A1/MOU/2009 Actions against public officials : legitimate expectations, misstatements and misconduct / Richard Moules, London : Sweet & Maxwell, 2009�

L93/SEL/2009 Advocacy preparation and performance / Hugh Selby, Annandale :� Federation Press, 2009��

N310/NIC/2009 Annotated Bankruptcy Act 1966 / Paul Nichols, Chatswood : LexisNexis Butterworths, 2009�

N350/CAI/2009 Australian civil procedure / Bernard C Cairns, Pyrmont : Thomson Lawbook Co, 8th ed,� 2009

B15/BLA/2009 Blackstone and his commentaries : biography, law and history / Wilfrid Prest (ed), Oxford : Hart Publishing 2009 �� L88/BRO/2009 Brooke's notary / N P Ready, London : Sweet & Maxwell, 13th ed, 2009

L221.A1/LES/2004 Building the UK's new supreme court : national and comparative perspectives / Andrew Le Sueur (ed), Oxford : Oxford University Press 2004

C2126/YEO/2004 Choice of law for equitable doctrines / T M Yeo, Oxford : Oxford University Press 2004

M570/STA/2001 Criminal justice, police powers, and human rights / Keir Starmer, Michelle Strange and Quincy Whitaker, London : Blackstone Press Limited 2001��

N390.A1/CRO/2007 Cross and Tapper on evidence / Colin Tapper Oxford : Oxford University Press, 11th ed, 2007

L93/MOR/2009 The devil's advocate : a short polemic on how to be seriously good in court / Iain Morley; London : Sweet & Maxwell, 2nd ed, 2009

N37.1.G1/RON/2008 Guides to the evaluation of permanent impairment / edited by Robert D Rondinelli (et al); 6th ed, AMA Press 2008��

N96.3/BRO/2009 Land acquisition : an examination of the principles of law governing the compulsory acquisition or resumption of land in Australia / Douglas Brown, Chatswood : LexisNexis Butterworths, 6th ed, 2009

L27.K2N/RED/2009 Law handbook : your practical guide to the law in New South Wales / Redfern Legal Centre Pyrmont, NSW : Thomson Lawbook Co 11th ed, 2009

L453.4/STR/2008 Marital litigation in the Court of Requests 1542-1642 / Tim Stretton, Cambridge :� Cambridge University Press 2008

M597.A1/WAL/1999 Miscarriages of justice : a review of Justice in error / edited by Clive Walker and Keir Starmer, London : Blackstone Press, 1999

N347/BUR/2009 Morgan and Burden on computer contracts / London : Sweet & Maxwell, 8th ed, 2009

N120.A1/PAR/2009 Parry and Kerridge : the law of succession / Roger Kerridge, London : Sweet & Maxwell 12th ed, 2009

L32/CRO/1991 Precedent in English law / Rupert Cross and J W Harris, Oxford : Clarendon Press 4th ed, 1991

L36.4/JUR/2008 Retroactivity and the common law / Ben Juratowitch, Oxford : Hart Publishing 2008

M302/BLA/1997 Rules and regulators / Julia Black, Oxford : Oxford University Press 1997��

M201/KLU/1996 The three pillars of liberty : political rights and freedoms in the United Kingdom / Francesca Klug, Keir Starmer and Stuart Weir, London : Routledge 1996��

N192/CCH/2009 Understanding the Fair Work Act : a practical guide to the new workplace relations system, North Ryde : CCH Australia Ltd 2009� �

11 August 2009

Reminder: Chief Justice Spigelman AC to deliver the 2009 Annual History Lecture (ADVERTISEMENT)

Tue Aug 11 2009

The History Council of NSW invites members to attend its annual lecture, on Friday, 4 September 2009 at 6.00pm in Government House, Macquarie Street, Sydney.� The lecture will be on "The Macquarie Bicentennial: A Reappraisal of the Bigge Reports". The lecture will examine the legacy of the Bigge Royal Commission into public infrastructure in the colony under Governor Lachlan Macquarie. The Bigge Reports marked the first step in the transition of the Colony from an open air prison, subject to an autocratic governor, to a diverse community with a variety of institutions.To attend the lecture, download and complete the registration form and flyer.

28 August 2009

Reports to note: No Exit: The Expanding Use of LIfe Sentences in America

Mon Aug 10 2009

Truth in sentencing laws in the United States have resulted in a dramatic increase in the length of time that people spend in prison and a growing number of prisoners sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. This report by the Sentencing Project, No Exit: The Expanding Use of Life Sentences in America, outlines the cumulative policy consequences of mandatory sentencing, truth in sentencing and "three strikes" laws.

Among the key findings are that:

  • twenty-nine percent of individuals (more than 41,000) serving life sentences in the US have no possibility of parole; and

  • astonishingly, there are 6,807 juveniles serving life sentences; 1,755, or 25.8 per cent, of whom are serving sentences of life without parole.

10 August 2009

The Obligation to Assist: Model Litigants in Administrative Appeals Tribunal Proceedings Seminar

Mon Aug 10 2009

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal and the ACT Bar Association will host a full day seminar on "The Obligation to Assist: Model Litigants in Administrative Appeals Tribunal Proceedings". The seminar will take place on 26 August 2009, between 9.00am and 4.30pm, at� the Hyatt Hotel, Commonwealth Avenue, Canberra. For more information, download a programme and registration form >

10 August 2009

Appointments to the AAT

Fri Aug 07 2009

Attorney-General Robert McClelland today announced the appointment of Anne Britton and Regina Perton to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT). Learn more >

7 August 2009

Final reminder: fourth annual Tristan Jepson Memorial Lecture

Fri Aug 07 2009

The Fourth Tristan Jepson Memorial Lecture will be held tomorrow, 24 September 2009 at 6.30pm at Freehills, Level 32, MLC Centre, Martin Place. The guest speaker for the evening will be Attorney-General Robert McClelland.� The topic will be on "The Importance of Early Intervention and the Role the Profession and Service Providers can Play in Encouraging Lawyers to Seek Early Treatment".

Please register your attendance by e-mailing�

23 September 2009

AIJA Conference on adversarial justice

Thu Aug 06 2009

The Australasian Institute of Judicial Administration and Monash University Faculty of Law are calling for papers to present at the conference on Non‐Adversarial Justice: Implications for the Legal System and Society, to be held on 4-7 May 2010 at the Hilton on the Park, East Melbourne. Closing date for papers is 4 December 2009. Learn more>

7 August 2009

Supreme Court announces delays in probate grants

Thu Aug 06 2009

The Supreme Court has warned to expect extended delays on receipt of a grant of probate. "Unfortunately, a large number of unexpected staff absences through illness over the last month has reduced the court's ability to meet its processing targets. Clients are advised that the current waiting time on a grant of probate is between four to five weeks from the date of filing", it was announced. Learn more >

6 August 2009

New president of the American Bar Association

Thu Aug 06 2009

The American Bar Association has a new president, one with strong credentials in international and trade law. Carolyn Lamm is an international arbitration, litigation and trade lawyer and partner at the firm of White and Case in Washington, D.C. She has served on numerous committees with the ABA Sections of Litigation, International Law and Business Law. Lamm is also a council member of the American Law Institute, and a board member of the American Turkish Chamber of Commerce, the American Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and the American Uzbekistan Chamber of Commerce. Learn more>

6 August 2009

Early Bird Extended for 36th Australian Legal Convention

Thu Aug 06 2009

Early Bird registration for the up-coming 36th Australian Legal Convention has been extended, giving delegates extra time to secure their place at the conference at a reduced rate. Delegates now have until Friday, 14 August 2009, to receive great Early Bird rates. The convention is expected to attract hundreds of delegates from home and abroad, and it will showcase national and international leaders and decision makers from the legal profession and related fields. Speakers include Western Australian Supreme Court Chief Justice Wayne Martin, NSW Court of Appeal President Justice James Allsop, Professor Margaret Thornton, of the ANU School of Law, and Western Australian Attorney-General Christian Porter, International Bar Association (IBA) President Fernando Pelaez-Pier, the president of the Malaysian Bar, Ragunath Kesavan, and the former president of the New York State Bar Association, Steven Krane will add an international flavour to the event.

High Court Chief Justice Robert French and Commonwealth Attorney-General Robert McClelland will also both deliver the customary 'State of the Nation' addresses. And for the first time in the event’s history, the convention will incorporate the inaugural Australian Young Lawyers Conference, designed to cater specifically to the needs of the nation’s young practitioners.

The convention, to be held at the Burswood Entertainment Complex in Perth from 17-19 September, will be the highlight of the 2009 legal calendar. The registration brochure and full convention details are available at 6 August 2009

Reminder: conference on rehabilitation and corrective services

Wed Aug 05 2009

The International Commission of Jurists Australia and the Community Justice Coalition invite members to a seminar on "Our Prisons – Human Rights, Mental Health & Privatisation", which will take place on Saturday, 5 September 2009 in the State Library of NSW. This is the first of a series of seminars on the custodial system for adults and juveniles.

The Hon John Robertson MLC, minister for corrective services, will open the seminar with� Mr Victor Dominello MP who is speaking on behalf of Shadow Attorney General Greg Smith SC MP.� Featured speakers also include Dr Eileen Baldry from the School of Social Sciences and International Studies, University of NSW; Dr Helen Watchirs from the ACT Human Rights & Discrimination Commission and Dr John Paget, director of the ACT Prison Project; the Hon Greg James, president of the NSW Mental Health Review Tribunal and Dr Olav Nielssen, forensic psychiatrist at St Vincent’s Hospital.

Download a flyer>

31 August 2009