AGS Legal Seminars in Sydney 26 and 27 July 2010 (ADVERTISEMENT)

Wed Jun 30 2010

Australian Government Solicitor has scheduled two new half-day seminars at AGS Sydney for 26 and 27 July 2010. The cost for each seminar is $295.00 (GST inclusive) per person and a 10 per cent discount applies if any agencies send three or more people to the same seminar on the same day. For further information download the brochures or visit the AGS web site. Nominations will close by COB 16 July 2010.

Cases of Distinction - New South Wales and Commonwealth Administrative Law Decisions, 2007-10 is scheduled for 1.30pm on 26 July 2010.

It focuses on cases that are current and important which illustrate major principles of administrative law. It helps you stay abreast of recent developments in administrative law cases; be informed and literate regarding new cases and revises and refreshes your knowledge of the underlying concepts of administrative law. �

Context and Construction - New South Wales and Commonwealth Statutory Interpretation Decisions is scheduled for 1.30pm on 27 July 2010.

It will focus on New South Wales and Commonwealth cases that are current and important which illustrate major principles of statutory interpretation.� It will cover subjects including current judicial approaches to statutory interpretation, case studies of interpretative practice and leading interpretative principles.

If you have any queries regarding these seminars please contact� or phone 02 6253 7436.

13 July 2010

Appointments to the Family Court

Wed Jun 30 2010

Attorney-General Robert McClelland has announced the appointment of Judge Ann Ainslie-Wallace, Ms Margaret Cleary, Mr William Johnston and Mr Ian Loughnan as judges of the Family Court of Australia.

"All four appointees come to the court with rich and diverse backgrounds in the law. Their considerable experience will be a great asset to the bench of the Family Court,” Mr McClelland said.

30 June 2010

ALRC discovery inquiry goes interactive

Wed Jun 30 2010

Members with an interest in the Australian Law Reform Commission's Discovery Inquiry are encouraged to receive the Discovery Inquiry newsletter. The ALRC is also launching the Discovery Blog to promote discussion around issues being considered by the inquiry. The blog is open to all. The final report and recommendations are due to be provided to the attorney-general by no later than 31 March 2011.

30 June 2010

Amendment to Local Court Practice Note 1 of 2010

Tue Jun 29 2010

The Local Court has issued an amendment to Practice Note 1 of 2010 - Procedures to be Adopted for Committal Hearings in the Local Court for Proceedings Commenced on or after 1 May 2008 (issued 4 January 2010). This practice note applies to all matters for which a court attendance notice was filed on or after 1 May 2008 but before 1 January 2011 (irrespective of whether the offence was committed before or after 1 May 2008) and supersedes Practice Notes 1 of 2007 and 4 of 2008 for these matters. Learn more >

29 June 2010

Renewals deadline drawing near: a reminder to PC holders

Tue Jun 29 2010

The Bar Association has a significant number of renewals that cannot be processed as we have not received confirmation of insurance. Although the brokers/insurers do send us lists of the names of those barristers with whom they have bound insurance, these lists are not always complete. Learn more>

29 June 2010

Legally Coerced Treatment for Heroin Addicted Offenders: Ethical and Policy Issues

Tue Jun 29 2010

The New South Wales Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research will host a seminar by Professor Wayne Hall on� Legally Coerced Treatment for Heroin Addicted Offenders: Ethical and Policy Issues at the Metcalfe Auditorium, State Library of NSW between 10.00-11.00am on Wednesday, 14 July 2010.

Wayne Hall is an NHMRC Australia Fellow in addiction neuroethics at the University of Queensland Centre for Clinical Research. He was formerly:� Professor of Public Health Policy in the School of Population Health� (2005-2010) and Director of the Office of Public Policy and Ethics at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience (2001-2005) at the University of Queensland; and Director of the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at UNSW (1994-2001).� He has advised the World Health Organization on: the health effects of cannabis use; the effectiveness of drug substitution treatment; the scientific quality of the Swiss heroin trials; the contribution of illicit drug use to the global burden of disease; and the ethical implications of genetic and neuroscience� research on addiction. In 2001 he was identified by the Institute for Scientific Analysis as one of the world’s most highly cited social scientists in the past 20 years. He was awarded an NHMRC Australia Fellowship in 2009 to research the public health, social policy and ethical implications of genetic and neuroscience research on drug use and addiction.

Legally coerced addiction treatment is provided as an alternative to imprisonment for persons who have been charged with or convicted of an offence to which their drug dependence has contributed e.g. drug distribution or property offences committed to fund their drug use. This paper, conducted in collaboration with Dr Jayne Lucke from the University of Queensland Centre for Clinical Research, outlines the case for providing such treatment, describes the various ways in which such treatment can be provided at different stages in the criminal justice system; discusses the ethical issues raised by using different degrees of legal coercion and different types of addiction treatment (e.g. drug free TCs and opioid maintenance treatment); and briefly reviews the evidence on the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of this approach to treating addicted offenders. In the light of this evidence, the paper considers the evidence base for and policy issues raised by New South Wales Compulsory Drug Treatment Program. �

RSVPs are essential for catering purposes. Please e-mail to or ring 02 9231 9190.

7 July 2010

Champagne tasting at the Oak Barrell

Tue Jun 29 2010

Members are invited to a tasting of French champagnes at the Oak Barrell wine shop (152 Elizabeth Street, Sydney) on Thursday, 22 July 2010 commencing at 5.30 pm.� The champagnes available for tasting are: Bollinger, Pol Roger, Billecart, Louis, Roederer and Moet & Chandon. Cost is $70 per person which includes a presenter to talk about each champagne, a glass and light cheeses and crackers.� To reserve your place, click here.

12 July 2010

New Professional Standards Scheme for New South Wales Bar Association members

Mon Jun 28 2010
Professional Standards Scheme

The Professional Standards Council has approved a new Professional Standards Scheme for the New South Wales Bar Association. The new scheme was published in the New South Wales Government Gazette on Friday, 25 June 2010, and will take effect on 1 July 2010. The new scheme will replace the Bar Association's previous Professional Standards Scheme, the operation of which which had been extended until 30 June 2010. Members should note that the scheme limits liability for damages to $1.5 million provided the member has professional indemnity insurance which is not less than $1.5 million. The minimum level of cover approved by the attorney general for PII policies for 2010-11 is $1.5 million.

An article will be published in In Brief in the near future reminding members of their disclosure responsibilities and other obligations under the new scheme. 28 June 2010

Cases selected for reporting in FCR by V Kline

Mon Jun 28 2010

Diarise for next month: the Bar Trivia Challenge

Mon Jun 28 2010

Diarise this date: Thursday, 12 August 2010. The Equal Opportunity Committee invites you to attend the inaugural New South Wales Bar Trivia Challenge. A professional quiz master has been engaged to test your knowledge of trivia, both great and small.� All proceeds from the night will go to Righteous Pups Australia, a charitable organisation which provides assistance dogs for children with autistic spectrum disorders.� Further details to follow.

28 June 2010

The Bar Book Club

Mon Jun 28 2010

The Bar Book Club will hold its next meeting at 6.00pm on Thursday, 22 July in the Bar Library.� The book is _The Beautiful and the Damned _by F Scott Fitzgerald. 28 June 2010

TONIGHT: Wednesday 8 September - Arbitration Workshop: become an Arbitrator approved by the Bar Association

Mon Jun 28 2010

The ADR Committee is pleased to welcome The Hon Justice R McDougall to address participants at the third and final Arbitration Workshop. The workshop offers members with 7 years’ experience as legal practitioners and a practising certificate the opportunity to become approved Arbitrators. Members who do not fulfill the requirement of 7 years’ practice or who do not wish to apply to be an approved arbitrator are invited to attend to increase their expertise in representing parties at arbitrations. The workshop will take place from 5.00 to 7.00pm, and attendees will accrue 2 CPD points and 1 point towards mediator accreditation. For full details, download a flyer.

8 September 2010

Farewell to Associate Justice McLaughlin

Fri Jun 25 2010

Associate Justice McLaughlin will hold his final sitting on Friday, 2 July 2010 at 10.00am in court 11C. Jane Needham SC will speak on behalf of the New South Wales Bar. It is not a ceremonial sitting and barristers should wear the same attire that they normally would before an associate justice.�

1 July 2010

New fees for Federal Courts

Fri Jun 25 2010

The Access to Justice Division of the Commonwealth Attorney-General's Department has announced that fees for federal courts and tribunals are to be increased. The increases are to "offset the injection of funds into legal assistance services". View the new fee structure>

25 June 2010

Out with the old and in with the new: farewell to the Trade Practices Act

Fri Jun 25 2010

The Commonwealth Parliament has passed the new Competition and Consumer Act 2010, which will replace the Trade Practices Act 1974. Competition Policy and Consumer Affairs Minister Craig Emerson said "The new Act will transform fair trading and consumer protection laws, replacing inconsistent provisions in 17 Commonwealth, state and territory laws with a single national law".

25 June 2010

Nationally harmonised interest rates - changes to Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005

Fri Jun 25 2010

Practitioners should note the changes to the UCPR under Uniform Civil Procedure Rules (Amendment No 32) 2010 and Uniform Civil Procedure Rules (Amendment No 34) 2010 commence on 1 July 2010. These amendments provide for the adoption in NSW of nationally harmonised provisions for the awarding of post-judgment interest under s 101 of the Civil Procedure Act 2005 (CPA) as well as changes to the calculation of claims for pre-judgment interest under s 100 CPA.

Post-judgment interest

Schedule 5 to the UCPR sets out the applicable default rates for post-judgment interest.� It will be repealed with effect as and from 1 July 2010.� Schedule 5 rates will be replaced with a new nationally harmonised formula for the calculation of interest based on the Reserve Bank of Australia's cash rate.� This is set out in UCPR 36.7 (1) and is as follows:

The prescribed rate at which interest is payable under section 101 of the Civil Procedure Act 2005 is:

(a)�� �in respect of the period from 1 January to 30 June in any year—the rate that is 6% above the cash rate last published by the Reserve Bank of Australia before that period commenced, and

(b)�� �in respect of the period from 1 July to 31 December in any year—the rate that is 6% above the cash rate last published by the Reserve Bank of Australia before that period commenced.

The change to post-judgment interest does not have retrospective effect - section 30 Interpretation Act 1987 (NSW).� Interest for post-judgment periods up to and including 30 June 2010 should be calculated with reference to the rates in Schedule 5.� Practitioners are reminded that they may access historic versions of the UCPR via the NSW Government's legislation web site to review Schedule 5 rates.

Pre-judgment interest

The court may award pre-judgment interest under s 100 CPA.

NSW courts will issue practice notes with respect to the adoption of a nationally harmonised formula based on the Reserve Bank of Australia's cash rate for pre-judgment interest claimed under s 100 (1) and s 100 (2) CPA as follows:

(a)� in respect of the period from 1 January to 30 June in any year – the rate that is 4% above the cash rate last published by the Reserve Bank of Australia before that period commenced, and (b)� in respect of the period from 1 July to 31 December in any year – the rate that is 4% above the cash rate last published by the Reserve Bank of Australia before that period commenced.

The Supreme Court issued its Practice Note (SC Gen 16) on 16 June.

Practitioners should note UCPR 6.12 (8), as amended. This provides for claims for pre-judgment interest where a contractual or statutory rate of interest does not apply. The effect of the change is that in liquidated statements of claim filed after I July where no other rate applies, the interest calculation for the entire pre-judgment period should be based on the new harmonised formula for pre-judgment interest.

25 June 2010

Singapore and NSW Supreme courts sign MOU on questions of foreign law

Fri Jun 25 2010

The Supreme courts of New South Wales and Singapore have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to work closely and expeditiously on issues arising under foreign law. Chief Justice Spigelman said the MOU and supporting amended Uniform Civil Procedure Rules would prove valuable in determining complex cross-border commercial and family disputes. Learn more>

25 June 2010

Practising Certificate Renewals Update No.6

Thu Jun 24 2010

Have you lodged your practising certificate renewal application but not yet arranged your PII? There are a number of barristers for whom the association has not been able to issue a practising certificate as it has not been advised that they have bound Professional Indemnity Insurance. If the Bar Association has not been advised that insurance is bound for a barrister before 1 July 2010, that barrister must cease practising on and from 1 July 2010. Learn more >

24 June 2010

30th Anniversary of the Land and Environment Court Gala Dinner

Thu Jun 24 2010

This Land and Environment Court will celebrate its 30th anniversary with a dinner at the Strangers Dining Room, Parliament House, on Wednesday, 1 September 2010 at 6.30pm. The dinner will be held in conjunction with the 2010 Australasian Conference of Planning and Environment Courts and Tribunals. For more information, or to register, download a brochure>

24 June 2010