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Cuts to legal aid put trials at risk

Mon Dec 22 2014

The Bar Association has issued a media release warning that the federal government’s contribution to legal aid funding for Commonwealth cases is fast running out, raising the spectre of very important trials being delayed or even aborted. View the media release here.

Media briefing

Fri Dec 19 2014

President Jane Needham SC this morning issued a statement to the media, expressing concern that lawyers and members of the judiciary have been the subject of personal abuse and criticism following the tragic events in Martin Place. Her statement can be viewed here.

Furthermore, the president was interviewed about this matter on ABC 702 this morning, as well as Ten News, ABC TV and Sky TV.

Bar Library hours over the Christmas-New Year period

Fri Dec 19 2014

The Bar Library will close at 4.00pm on Friday, 19 December 2014 and reopen at 9.00am on Monday, 19 January 2015. The library will be open from 9.00am to 5.00pm from 19-23 January 2015 and resume normal opening hours on Tuesday, 27 January 2015.

Service of Prayer and Reflection: today

Fri Dec 19 2014

A special Service of Prayer and Reflection will be held at St James’ Church, 173 King Street, Sydney on this Friday, 19 December at 4:15pm, to give thanks for the lives of Katrina Dawson and Tori Johnson and to support those affected by the siege in Martin Place last Monday. It will be led by the Rector of St James, the Reverend Andrew Sempell, and the Choir of St James under the direction of Warren Trevelyan-Jones.

A special invitation to attend the service is extended to colleagues of those who died or were held hostage, as well as those who were caught up in the tragedy, and others who work in the vicinity of Martin Place and Phillip Street. The service should end by 5.00pm.

The Bar Association has opened a condolence book, which will be kept at its reception, until 3.00pm on Friday, at which time it will be placed at the Service of Prayer and Reflection.

Further details regarding the service can be obtained by contacting the Parish Office on ph: (02) 8227 1300.

Parramatta Inter-Church Law Service, 4 February 2015

Thu Dec 18 2014

The annual Parramatta Inter-Church Law Service to mark the commencement of the 2015 Law Term will be held on Wednesday, 4 February 2015 at 9.30am in St John’s Anglican Cathedral, 195 Church St Parramatta.

Opening of Law Term Red Mass

Thu Dec 18 2014

The Red Mass will be celebrated at 9.00am on Monday, 2 February 2015, at St Mary’s Cathedral, Sydney. It will be celebrated by Archbishop Fisher OP, and will commemorate those who have most recently died at the Lindt Cafe, in the early hours of the morning on 13 December 2014.

Judges and counsel are invited to robe in the Crypt from 8:30 am. There will be a procession of judges and counsel into the cathedral. Morning tea will be served in Cathedral House immediately after the ceremony.

Bench and Bar Tennis Day cancelled

Thu Dec 18 2014

Organisers of the 2014 Bench and Bar Tennis Tournament advise that the event has been cancelled, out of respect for Katrina Dawson and in the event that participants should want to attend a memorial service. Those taking part will be contacted directly.

CBF Legal special meeting at Silks 7.30am this Thursday

Wed Dec 17 2014

CBF Legal, the non-denominational Christian group that meets regularly at Silks on a Thursday morning, will be resuming for a special meeting tomorrow morning to grieve the tragic loss of life, to offer comfort and to pray for all affected. We will meet at the usual time of 7:30am at the back of Silks and all members of the Bar are most welcome. For further information contact Peter Kaldor ph: 0409 457259 or peter.kaldor@citybibleforum.org.

Access to Frederick Jordan and Garfield Barwick Chambers

Wed Dec 17 2014

Members are advised that an alternative entrance to Frederick Jordan Chambers and Garfield Barwick Chambers is now available from Elizabeth Street. Members with further enquiries should feel free to contact the Junior Vice-President, Arthur Moses, on ph: 0400 703 717 or moses@fjc.net.au.

17 December 2014

Bar Council business for October-November 2014

Wed Dec 17 2014

Bar Council met on 23 October, 13 November and 27 November in the boardroom of the New South Wales Bar Association. 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. View the minutes for:

Chambers offer helping hand to those locked out

Wed Dec 17 2014

In a generous offer to barristers locked out of their chambers and who need to borrow court attire or use facilities, State, Denman, Elizabeth Street and Sir Anthony Mason chambers have put out the welcome mat.

Barristers who are unable to access Frederick Jordan Chambers and Garfield Barwick Chambers and Level 7 Chambers in 53 Martin Place should make contact with the clerks of the following floors who may be able to assist with temporary use of facilities until their chambers reopen.

Moses SC has thanked the clerks of those chambers. "The Bar Association is very grateful for the generosity shown by these chambers. It is yet another demonstration of the collegiate nature of the NSW Bar including the care and support shown by its members during this difficult time".

Arthur Moses SC
Junior Vice-President

Extra: Phillip Street exclusion zone to be lifted tomorrow morning

Wed Dec 17 2014

The NSW Police have advised that the Phillip Street exclusion zone will be lifted at 7.30am tomorrow, Wednesday, 17 December 2014. Access to Phillip Street chambers will be permitted after that time. Provisionally, barristers will be able to access Frederick Jordan and Garfield Barwick chambers, although this might be reversed. In which case, members of those floors can avail themselves of the assistance offered by Denman, Elizabeth, State and Sir Anthony Mason chambers.

Arthur Moses SC has thanked the clerks of those chambers. "The Bar Association is very grateful for the generosity shown by these chambers. It is yet another demonstration of the collegiate nature of the NSW Bar including the care and support shown by its members during this difficult time".

Urgent enquiries can be directed to Moses SC, the junior vice-president on ph: 0400 703 717 or moses@fjc.net.au.

Vale Joseph Bede Phelan (1940-2014)

Wed Dec 17 2014

Joseph Phelan, former District Court judge, has died. A funeral will be held at St Francis Xavier's Cathedral, corner of Crown and Harbour streets, Wollongong, at 9.30am, on Friday, 19 December 2014. Those wishing to attend are asked to email kbiddle@hansonlawyers.com.au

Afternoon of Reflection and Remembrance for Katrina Dawson

Wed Dec 17 2014
Message from President Jane Needham SC

The traumatic events of the last two days have shocked and saddened us all. The exclusion zone and the closure of many chambers has meant that our members have been isolated from their colleagues and unable to offer, or receive, the support that the collegiality of the bar affords. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Katrina Dawson, and with our two other colleagues and members. We also remember the other members of the public who were kept hostage.

In order to provide a central place for sharing our memories of Katrina, and to reflect on this tragedy, the Common Room of the New South Wales Bar Association will be open from 1.00pm to 5.00pm today, Wednesday 17 December 2014. Light refreshments will be available.

A more formal memorial, if Katrina's family so wishes, will be held at a later time.

Jane Needham SC

Further advice on access to chambers via Phillip Street

Tue Dec 16 2014
Junior Vice-President Arthur Moses SC has released the following updated advice

Members are advised that security measures preventing access to Selborne and Wentworth Chambers, announced in the previous InBrief bulletin, apply to other chambers that have their main entry point within the Phillip Street exclusion zone - specifically, St James Hall Chambers, William Deane Chambers. The soonest that they might be accessible will be tomorrow morning.

Frederick Jordan and Garfield Barwick Chambers remain closed until further notice.

The NSW Police have now relocated the perimeter of the exclusion zone further down Phillip Street and Deutsche Bank Place is now open for access by tenants. Chambers located in 52 Martin Place (the Colonial Centre) have access via Elizabeth Street and are not affected by the restrictions.

Urgent enquiries can be directed to Arthur Moses SC, the junior vice-president on ph: 0400 703 717 or moses@fjc.net.au.

Courts to resume Queens Square operations tomorrow morning

Tue Dec 16 2014

The New South Wales Supreme Court and the Federal Court of Australia have advised the Bar Association that they will resume normal operations at Queens Square tomorrow morning. Updates from the Supreme Court can be obtained here and from the Federal Court here.

Access to Selborne and Wentworth Chambers

Tue Dec 16 2014
Junior Vice-President Arthur Moses SC has released the following notice

Macquarie Street is now open and Lockhart Chambers and Windeyer Chambers are accessible using security swipe tags or cards. However, the NSW Police have advised that Wentworth & Selborne Chambers cannot be occupied at this stage. As a consequence, there is no access to Wentworth & Selborne at all. According to the NSW Police, it is highly unlikely that Wentworth & Selborne Chambers will be re-opened at all today and the earliest time that access will be available will be tomorrow morning. Any urgent enquiries can be directed to Arthur Moses SC, the junior vice-president on ph: 0400 703 717 or moses@fjc.net.au.

Vale Katrina Dawson

Tue Dec 16 2014

It is with a heavy heart and deep sorrow that I must inform members of the New South Wales Bar Association that Katrina Dawson, of 8 Selborne Chambers, passed away in the early hours of this morning. Katrina, together with two other members of the NSW Bar, were held as hostages during the incident at the Lindt Café in Phillip Street, Sydney, yesterday.

Katrina was one of our best and brightest barristers who will be greatly missed by her colleagues and friends at the NSW Bar. She was a devoted mother of three children, and a valued member of her floor and of our bar community. Our thoughts are with her family at this time, including her brother, Sandy Dawson of Banco Chambers.

BarCare is available for any members of the NSW Bar Association, their families and staff, who require assistance through this difficult time. Bar Care can be contacted via Ph:(02) 9331 3872 or pjohnston@barcare.org

Out of respect to Katrina's family, the NSW Bar Association will be making no further comment at this time.

Jane Needham SC

President

The Bar Association office is closed

Tue Dec 16 2014

The New South Wales Bar Association will remain closed today and tomorrow, Wednesday, 17 December 2014. Any urgent enquiries can be directed to Arthur Moses SC, the junior vice-president on ph: 0400 703 717 or moses@fjc.net.au.

Philip Selth
Executive Director

Bar Association office closed due to siege at the Lindt Cafe

Mon Dec 15 2014

Due to the ongoing emergency in Martin Place, the New South Wales Bar Association has closed its office for the day. All of our staff are accounted for and have been sent home. InBrief will publish more information if and when it becomes available.

Voidable Transactions in Company Insolvency

Fri Dec 12 2014

Voidable Transactions in Company Insolvency written by Farid Assaf (Principal Author and Concept Originator), Brett Shields and Hilary Kincaid is a clear, thorough and practical work. This book guides practitioners through the complex voidable transaction provisions of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) and the myriad of cases dealing with voidable transactions. Order your copy from the LexisNexis online store.

All aspects of the voidable transaction provisions contained in Part 5.7B of the Corporations Act are discussed in meticulous detail while at the same time maintaining a practical outlook. In addition to chapters on various types of voidable transactions, there are individual chapters specially dedicated to practice and procedure in voidable transaction cases, the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (Cth) and cross-border insolvency aspects of voidable transactions.

Complete with checklists and precedents, Voidable Transactions in Company Insolvency is a must for the busy practitioner practising in insolvency law.

Features
  • Scholarly and thorough exposition of subject matter
  • A single resource with a practical focus designed for the busy practitioner
  • Clear, concise and well written
  • Practical emphasis with the inclusion of checklists and precedents

Three barristers appointed to the Federal Circuit Court

Fri Dec 12 2014

Three members of the New South Wales Bar have been appointed to the Federal Circuit Court of Australia. Attorney-General George Brandis yesterday announced the appointment of Sandy Street SC, Justin Smith SC and Ian Newbrun, as well as the appointment of The Hon Justice James Edelman of the Supreme Court of WA to replace Justice Jacobson on the bench of the Federal Court. Learn more here.