Judge Murrell appointed chief justice of the ACT

Thu Sep 12 2013

ACT Attorney General Simon Corbell has announced the appointment of Her Honour Judge Helen Gay Murrell of the District Court of NSW as the new chief justice of the Supreme Court of the ACT. Judge Murrell was appointed to the District Court of NSW in 1996, is a former president of the Equal Opportunity Tribunal who set up the Drug Court in NSW. Judge Murrell brings 17 years of extensive experience in both criminal and civil matters.

12 September 2013

Procedure at General Meeting on Incorporation of Barristers

Thu Sep 12 2013

As indicated in the Notice of Meeting dated 2 August 2013, a general meeting of the Association will be held in the New South Wales Bar Association Common Room, commencing at 5.15pm, on Tuesday 17 September to consider and vote on the issue of incorporation of barristers’ practices. To assist in the smooth running of the meeting, set out below are procedural matters relating to the General Meeting.

I have been notified by Mr Hyde Page, the proposer of the motion included in the notice of meeting, that it is proposed to modify the motion in the following terms:

“This meeting expresses its support for changes that would permit barristers who choose to do so to practise through single member, sole director companies, and the meeting further requests that the Bar Council seek the necessary changes”.

Any amendment to that modified motion or any other motion that is sought to be considered by the meeting will have to be one that can be put validly to the meeting, having regard to requirements of notice, and established meeting practice and procedure.

As indicated previously, I have also received notice that it is likely that a vote by ballot (rather than show of hands) will be demanded at the meeting in accordance with the Constitution.

The Bar Association will be making arrangements for the conduct of a vote on the modified motion by ballot, which will necessitate each member registering their attendance on arrival, and being issued with a form of ballot. As part of this process, each member will be required to provide a form of photographic identification. It is anticipated that the registration process will take some time. Accordingly, members are requested to arrive at 4.30pm for registration so that we can start the meeting on time. Please note that the meeting will start as soon as a quorum is present at or after 5.15pm.

The Bar Council has resolved to appoint the Executive Director as the Returning Officer for the ballot, and the Association's auditors as scrutineers.

It is proposed to allow one hour for debate before members cast their ballots. I propose to put the matter to a vote at 6.15 pm, as some members who wish to attend the meeting and vote have family commitments etc.

The mover and seconder of the substantive (modified) motion will be allowed to speak for a maximum of 5 minutes each. The mover will also be allowed three minutes at the end of the debate to sum up.

During the debate on the motion, other speakers will be allowed a maximum of three minutes each. I intend to enforce strictly these time limits. I will endeavour to ensure that the views of those in favour and those against the motion are represented equally in the debate.

I intend to give preference to those wishing to speak who are eligible to vote. As indicated previously, only NSW Practising Certificate holders who are also members of the Association or Life Members have the right to vote at the General Meeting or to appoint a proxy, although Class B members are, of course, welcome to attend the meeting.

If members who have lodged a proxy form now wish to attend and vote at the meeting in person, it would be greatly appreciated if they could withdraw their proxy appointment in advance by contacting the Certification Officer at or on 9229 5740. Any withdrawal must be in writing.

Members should be aware that, pursuant to Clause 9.5.7(a) of the Association’s Constitution, an instrument purporting to appoint a proxy is not effective unless it is received by the Bar Association at least 48 hours before the General Meeting. Phillip Boulten SC 12 September 2013

National Indigenous Legal Conference and Ball

Wed Sep 11 2013

The Eighth Annual National Indigenous Legal Conference and Ball: "Atnengkerre Atherre Akwete" Two Laws Together, will be held in Alice Springs on 23-26 October 2013. The program is packed with interesting presentations on topics such as mandatory sentencing, consumer protection in remote communities, language and the law, an introduction to Ngarra Law of Arnhem Land and international perspectives from Canada and New Zealand. Book now, registrations close on 27 September 2013. View a conference program here and an invitation to the conference ball here.

11 September 2013

Toongabbie Legal Centre Fundraising Dinner - not too late to book

Wed Sep 11 2013

The chief justice of New South Wales, the Hon TF Bathurst, will be guest of honour at Toongabbie Legal Centre’s (TLC) Sixth Annual Fundraising Dinner on Saturday, 12 October 2013 at Bowman Hall, Blacktown. There's still time to reserve your seat and support a worthwhile cause providing free legal advice to the vulnerable communities. For more information, or to register, download a flyer here.

Toongabbie Legal Centre also invites barristers with over five years experience to volunteer with its free legal service in Toongabbie and Blacktown. Please email: for more information. Website:

11 October 2013

Incorporation of barristers

Wed Sep 11 2013

The Bar Association has received an advice from David Pritchard SC and Edward Muston concerning limitation of liability in the context of the incorporation of barristers’ practices. View the advice here.

11 September 2013

NSW Supreme Court signs agreement with Dubai International Financial Centre Courts

Tue Sep 10 2013

The New South Wales Supreme Court and the Dubai International Financial Centre Courts yesterday signed a Memorandum of Guidance (MoG) - effectively an understanding to consult and cooperate on the enforcement of each party’s money judgments in the other party’s court. The MoG was signed Chief Justice Tom Bathurst and DIFC Courts Chief Justice Michael Hwang, in the presence of the NSW deputy premier and minister for trade and investment, Andrew Stoner. Learn more here.

10 September 2013

Next week in CPD

Tue Sep 10 2013

On Tuesday, 29 October David Patch, crown prosecutor, will present a serminar on Tendency and Coincidence Evidence. For full details, please click here.

On Wednesday, 30 October Richard Lancaster SC and Stephen Free will present a seminar on Relevancy Grounds in Environmental and Administrative Law. Learn more here.

25 October 2013

Common Law Practice Update 38

Tue Sep 10 2013

**The Bar Association's Common Law Committee has released Practice Update 38 which features case notes on section 94 of the Motor Accidents Compensation Act 1999 (NSW), personal injury caused by animals, employment and more.

10 September 2013

One for the diary: Academy of Law Patron's address

Mon Sep 09 2013

The Australian Academy of Law (AAL) will hold the second of its annual Patron’s Addresses on Friday, 4 October 2013, at 5.30pm in the Banco Court, Level 13, Queen’s Square. The address will be delivered by the Hon James Spigelman AC QC. The inaugural Patron’s Address was delivered in 2012 by the Patron of the AAL, Chief Justice Robert French AC.

The AAL is a broadly-based and permanent body, comprising individuals of exceptional distinction from all parts of the legal community—elected from the judiciary, legal practitioners and legal academics—united in a common goal of advancement of the discipline of law and the justice system. A distinctive feature of the AAL is that its Fellows provide a ‘bridge’ linking and uniting the judiciary, academia and the legal profession in Australia.

The title of Mr Spigelman’s address will be: ‘Lions in Conflict: Ellesmere, Bacon and Coke—the Prerogative Battles”. His interest and expertise in this and other aspects of legal history are well known. In fact the lecture will be the third in a series, of which the earlier two are: ‘Lions in Conflict: Ellesmere, Bacon and Coke—the Years of Elizabeth’ (2007) 28 Aust Bar Rev 254; and ‘Lions in Conflict: Ellesmere, Bacon and Coke---Treason and Unity’ (2008) 30 Aust Bar Rev 144.

(Mr Spigelman recommends that attendees come to the lecture on 4 October having read the two published articles. All three form a chronological sequence and he will speak on the assumption that the audience has a general familiarity with the background.)

The lecture will be followed by drinks and savouries. Admission to the event will be free but as a large audience is expected, registration is essential for catering purposes. Therefore, please RSVP by 27 September to:

If this conference is relevant to your professional development, you may claim one MCLE/CPD point for each hour of attendance — refreshment breaks not included.

9 September 2013

15 Bobber for the Hon Justice Melissa Perry

Mon Sep 09 2013

The 15 Bobber to celebrate the appointment of the Honourable Justice Justice Melissa Perry to the Federal Court will be held on Friday, 8 November 2013. Speaking for Justice Perry will be Neil Williams SC. The 15 Bobber will commence at 5.30pm with the speeches beginning at 5.45pm. Pre-registration for the 15 Bobber is $15 and MUST be received by the association by 3.00pm Thursday, 7 November. Reservations made after this time and at the door will be $25. Download a registration form and return it with payment to Katie Retford at the New South Wales Bar Association, DX 1204 SYDNEY, e-mail

6 November 2013

15 Bobber for the Hon Justice Rowan Darke

Mon Sep 09 2013

The 15 Bobber to celebrate the appointment of the Hon Justice Rowan Darke to the Supreme Court of New South Wales will be held on Friday, 1 November 2013. Speaking for his Honour will be Lachlan Gyles SC. The 15 Bobber will commence at 5.30pm with the speeches beginning at 5.45pm. Pre-registration for the 15 Bobber is $15 and MUST be received by the association by 3.00pm Thursday, 31 October. Reservations made after this time and at the door will be $25. Download a registration form and return it with payment to Katie Retford at the New South Wales Bar Association, DX 1204 SYDNEY, e-mail

30�October 2013

Common Law Practice Update 37

Mon Sep 09 2013

**The Bar Association's Common Law Committee has released Practice Update 37 which features case notes on sections 33 and 95 of the Motor Accidents Compensation Act 1999 (NSW), workplace bullying, sporting injuries and causation.

9 September 2013

Professional Indemnity Insurance for NSW barristers appearing in Victoria

Mon Sep 09 2013

Following an application made by the Bar Association, Victoria’s Legal Services Board has granted NSW based barristers exemption for the 2013-14 practising year from the requirement to hold professional indemnity insurance with the Legal Practitioners Liability Committee so long as they:

1. have an office located in NSW; 2. engage in legal practice at that office; 3. have professional indemnity insurance as approved in NSW for the 2013-14 practising year i.e. Aon (CGU), Marsh, Suncorp or Willis (Allianz); and 4. are covered for civil liability in connection with his or her legal practice in Victoria by the insurance referred to in 3.

9 September 2013

2013 Pink & Blue Ribbon Breakfast - Friday, 18 October - all welcome!

Fri Sep 06 2013

The NSW Bar Association Pink & Blue Ribbon Breakfast is on Friday, 18 October 2013. Come and have breakfast with old and new friends and help raise money for very worthy causes. The breakfast will be held at Metro St James in Hyde Park from 7.45am to 9.00am. It is casual seating, so no need to book a table and both members and non-members welcome. Download an rsvp form. Even if you can only make it for a short time, please join us to support these great causes

Supporting charities

The National Breast Cancer Foundation (NBCF) is the leading community-funded national organisation in Australia raising money for research into prevention and cure of breast cancer. Research programs funded by the NBCF cover every aspect of breast cancer, from increasing understanding of genetics to providing better treatments and improving ways to support women and their families. The NBCF relies almost entirely on corporate and community support to continue its work.

The Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA) is the peak national body for prostate cancer in Australia. The PCFA focuses on funding innovative research, support, information and advocacy for men with prostate cancer and raising awareness across the community. PCFA operates over 100 supports groups Australia wide who provide support and advocacy, via the phone or face to face to men and their families affected by prostate cancer. These groups meet regularly and provide a meeting forum for the exchange of experiences, ideas and news as well as an invaluable support network.

If you are unable to make the breakfast but would like to make a donation to the National Breast Cancer Foundation or the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia, please complete the donation section of the RSVP Form and we will organise for the tax deductible receipt to be forwarded to you.

For all event enquiries, please contact Katie Retford, or phone 02 9232 4055.

14 October 2013

Arthur Phillip: Sailor, Mercenary, Governor, Spy

Fri Sep 06 2013

On Monday, 9 September, Michael Pembroke will be signing copies of his book, _Arthur Phillip: Sailor, Mercenary, Governor, Spy, _in celebration of History Week. Signings will take place at the Co-op Store in Phillip Street at 1:30pm.

6 September 2013

Legal Aid News for September 2013

Thu Sep 05 2013

Legal Aid News for August 2013 is out now, featuring stories on a pilot program to reduce apprehended domestic violence order breaches, a new legal aid application form and the results of a review showing how Legal Aid NSW has increased services to rural and regional Australia -and much more. You can view the newsletter here.

5 September 2013

Party for the Hon Thomas Hughes AO QC

Thu Sep 05 2013

The Bar Council invites members to a party to mark the retirement from practice of the Hon Thomas Hughes AO QC and to celebrate his outstanding contribution to the Bar Association and more widely to the profession of law.

The event will be held on Friday, 15 November 2013 at 5.15pm, with speeches beginning at 5.45pm, in the Bar Association’s Common Room. The Hon M H McHugh AC QC will speak of Mr Hughes achievements.

There is no cost to attend the event. However, for catering purposes we ask that you RSVP, if you are able to attend, by Friday, 8 November. Please send your rsvp to If you have any questions regarding the event, please contact Katie Retford on 9232 4055.

25 October 2013

Next meeting of the Bar Book Club

Thu Sep 05 2013

The Bar Book Club will hold its next meeting on Tuesday, 15 October 2013 in the Bar Library. The book for discussion will be Oryx and Crake, by Margaret Atwood. You can read a review here.

11 October�2013

2013-14 Court Vacation

Wed Sep 04 2013

In response to a number of enquiries from members: The 2013 Law Term ends on Friday, 20 December 2013 and the 2014 Law Term will begin on Monday, 3 February 2014.

4 September 2013

Two new appointments to the District Court

Wed Sep 04 2013

Attorney General Greg Smith SC today announced the appointment of Sharron Norton SC and Mark Williams SC as judges of the District Court of NSW. Ms Norton will be sworn in as a District Court judge on 16 September 2013, while Mr Williams’ swearing in will take place on 23 September 2013.

4 September 2013


Tue Sep 03 2013

The next address in the UNSW Law Justice Talks series will be held on Thursday, 19 September 2013 at 6.00pm. Titled "An eye for an eye: An oxymoron or real justice?", it will be delivered by Ms Pat O’Shane, Australia’s first Indigenous Magistrate the the UNSW Law Building, UNSW Kensington Campus. Register at

For too long justice and punishment have been seen as interchangeable terms. Retribution, not rehabilitation has been focus of the justice system, spurred on by public outcry and political pressure. Is the idea of ‘retributive justice’ an effective form of punishment or an excuse for vengeance? Is the long-term social cost of retribution really equal to the crime?

9�September 2013