2016 Common Law Drinks - registrations close today

Thu Aug 25 2016

Judges, barristers and clerks are invited to attend the 2016 Common Law Drinks on Friday, 2 September. The drinks will be held in the Club Bar at Hotel CBD, 52 King Street, Sydney. The drinks mark the 88th anniversary the momentous event in common law where Mrs Mary May Donoghue drank ginger beer from the tumbler which, it was claimed, contained the remains of a decomposed snail. The guest speaker on the evening will be the Hon Justice Margaret Beazley AO, president of the Court of Appeal. Drinks begin at 5.30pm and cost $85 for judges and barristers over 5 years and $65 for barristers under 5 years and clerks. Registrations close today. Late registrations will not be accepted. For more information and to RSVP, please click here.

The 2016 Common Law Drinks are kindly sponsored by Bar Cover.

Vale Michael Paul d'Arbon (1955-2016)

Thu Aug 25 2016

Michael d'Arbon, formerly a barrister at Samuel Griffiths Chambers, has died. Members will be advised of funeral arrangements as soon as they are known.

Call for papers: 2017 CPD Conferences

Wed Aug 24 2016

The NSW Bar Association's Professional Development Department invite members to submit suggestions and/or abstracts for papers to be included in the Bar Association's 2017 CPD Conference series. The conferences will be held on Saturdays in Ballina, Newcastle, Orange, Parramatta and Sydney during February and March.

The dates for 2017 Conferences are:

  • North Coast (Ballina) – Saturday 18 February
  • Newcastle – Saturday 25 February
  • Orange – Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 March
  • Parramatta – Saturday 18 March
  • Sydney – Saturday 25 March

Suggestions for papers and brief synopses can be submitted to the professional development coordinator, Tiffany McDonald ( Suggestions and abstracts are requested by Friday, 30 September 2016.

Coming up in CPD tomorrow

Wed Aug 24 2016

Thursday, 25 August: 'Best Practice - Four Ways to Improve your Mediation Advocacy'. Presented by the ADR Committee. Speakers: Ian Davidson SC and Andrew Fox. Chair: Angela Bowne SC. For full details please download a flyer here

This seminar will be held in the Common Room at 5.15pm.

Common Law Practice Update 96

Wed Aug 24 2016

The Bar Association's Common Law Committee has published Practice Update 96, with case notes on sections 61-63, 94 and 126 of the Motor Accidents Compensation Act 1999 (NSW) and more. Download CLPU 96 here.

Jane Needham SC to be WLA guest speaker

Tue Aug 23 2016

Former president of the Bar Association, Jane Needham SC, will be the guest speaker at a Women Lawyers Association of NSW event in Newcastle on Tuesday, 30 August 2016. Her topic will be "The Importance of Resilience as a Leader". It will take place at the Newcastle Club, 40 Newcomen Street, at 5.30pm for 6.00-7.30pm (please note dress code). For more information, or to reserve your place, download a registration form or book online.

The Bar Book Club meets tomorrow

Tue Aug 23 2016

The Bar Book Club meets tomorrow at 6.00pm in the Bar Library. The book is New York Trilogy by Paul Auster. A review is available here.

Proposed Escrow Payment Service for barristers

Mon Aug 22 2016
Presentation and invitation to join a focus & design group

The NSW Bar Association, through Senior Vice-President Arthur Moses SC and the former treasurer, Justin Hogan-Doran, is working on a project with the National Australia Bank with the aim of providing members with an on-line escrow payment service, if they choose to use it.

Similar to a service already being provided by the English Bar to its members, the service would not be a trust account, but would allow members to arrange for client funds to be held on escrow with the bank as security for fees for appearance work, advice work and ADR etc. It is proposed that payment would be made against invoices and the funds held until paid, returned at the conclusion of the matter or until court order after any dispute about fees. The service would be fully on-line, with the funds held by the bank as stakeholder.

The service would be of use to members especially for matters where the solicitors do not operate trust accounts, or the solicitor or barrister wishes the funds to be held separately, and for direct access work, international work and ADR.

We invite interested members and clerks from across the bar’s practice areas to join a focus group to give feed-back on and aid in the design of the service, to help make it as useful as possible to all members. The group would work with Arthur Moses SC, Justin Hogan-Doran and a team from the National Australia Bank over the coming months. We invite all interested members and clerks to send an email to by 31 August 2016.

On Thursday, 29 September 2016, a general presentation about the proposed Escrow Payment Service will be held for members in the Bar Common Room. Clerks of Chambers are also invited to attend.

Chair: Arthur Moses SC

Presenters: Justin Hogan-Doran (7 Wentworth Selborne), Theo Gavrilos (head of Corporate Services, NAB) and Mr Murray Lord (senior legal counsel, NAB)

Vale Gregory Anthony Farmer (1959-2016)

Mon Aug 22 2016

His Honour Judge Gregory Farmer SC of the District Court died this afternoon. Members will be advised of funeral arrangements as soon as they are known.

Barrister does not mean good communicator

Mon Aug 22 2016

The Rules of Court and the control that comes from the right to cross examine, can make you feel like an effective communicator as getting your point of view (your client’s point of view) across can be relatively easy. However, advocating in court is much different from talking with solicitors and clients ‘out of court’ and from relating to your family at home.

When do you last recall achieving real value from seeking to cross examine someone during negotiations, or from ‘winning the argument’ with your spouse, partner, kids or friends, by virtue of your advocacy skills?

In the context of relationships – whether at work or at home – the raw exercise of power is antithetical to valuable connection and resolution of conflict.

Most of us are not naturally good communicators and so (whether we like it or not) whilst confidence to speak up is a good start – we must learn to listen and to acknowledge what is being said to us. That is, to respect the speaker by showing that we understand their point of view.
Register for Communicate 2016 on September 26-27 – you will hear world experts speak on how to communicate more effectively and on the relationship between communication and conflict.

CPD points are available based on Bar Association guidelines. Shared registrations and generous group rates are also available. See for full details.

Yoga hiatus

Mon Aug 22 2016

The 1.00pm lunchtime yoga classes will be in recess for the duration of the Bar Practice Course, beginning Monday, 29 August 2016. Sessions will resume on Tuesday, 27 September 2016.

Legal conference on Hvar island, Croatia 16-22 September 2016

Mon Aug 22 2016

Adriatic Conferences is pleased to announce Hvar island, Croatia as the destination for its conference in September. The conference will take place between 16-22 September 2016 with conference sessions on 17,18, 20 and 22 September. The conference will cover topics relevant to family, commercial, equity and criminal law. Speakers are from Australia and the United Kingdom. The conference venue is the Amfora Hvar Grand Beach Resort. For further details and registration click here or to see the conference program click here.

Coming up in CPD this week

Mon Aug 22 2016

Thursday, 25 August: 'Best Practice - Four Ways to Improve your Mediation Advocacy'. Presented by the ADR Committee. Speakers: Ian Davidson SC and Andrew Fox. Chair: Angela Bowne SC. For full details please download a flyer here

This seminar will be held in the Common Room at 5.15pm.

Coming up in CPD next week

Fri Aug 19 2016

Thursday, 25 August: 'Best Practice - Four Ways to Improve your Mediation Advocacy'. Presented by the ADR Committee. Speakers: Ian Davidson SC and Andrew Fox. Chair: Angela Bowne SC. For full details please download a flyer here

This seminar will be held in the Common Room at 5.15pm.

LCA calls for Australia-wide review of youth detention

Fri Aug 19 2016

The Law Council of Australia has called for all juvenile detention systems in Australia to be reviewed following reports and images of alleged mistreatment in Townsville's Cleveland Youth Detention Centre and Brisbane Youth Detention Centre. The disturbing images were aired on ABC and taken from internal government reports by the Queensland Government's Youth Detention Inspectorate. View the LCA media release here.

2017 Personal Injury Conference: call for papers

Fri Aug 19 2016

The NSW Bar Association's 2017 Personal Injury Conference is scheduled for Saturday, 11 March 2017. The association's Professional Development Department would like to invite members to submit abstracts for papers to be included on the day. Suggestions for papers can be submitted to the Professional Development Coordinator, Tiffany McDonald

Bar FC bow out of the DSL competition

Thu Aug 18 2016

Yesterday saw a strong Bar FC team take on BT Financial Group to decide a place in the finals. A win or a draw was required by us to secure our position. A quick, youthful and talented opponent shot to a 3-0 lead in the first ten minutes and Bar FC knew it was going to require a huge effort to grind out a draw. Not scared of doing the hard yards, all players of Bar FC worked tirelessly and gave all in the second half with a nice header from Di Michiel resulting in a final scoreline of 3-1. Whist Bar FC miss the final series, it must be remembered that only one point seperated first from fifth on the ladder.

Bar FC now have a few weeks to regroup, recuperate and prepare for the real competition of each year, the Tri State Competition. This annual competition sees the might of the NSW Bar pitted against the Victorian and Queensland Bar. This year the squad will travel to Brisbane where the games will be played on 10 September 2016. As the tri state champions, there is a great deal of pressure upon the team to retain the silverware.

The touring party is as follows thus far:

  • Richard Di Michiel
  • Glen Fredericks
  • Geoff O’Shea
  • Simon Philips
  • John Harris
  • Tim Kane
  • Rohan de Meric
  • Adrian Canceri
  • Faraz Maghami
  • Matt Vickers
  • Darren Covell
  • Colin Magee
  • Justin Hogan-Doran
  • Michael Fordham SC
  • Ivan Griscti
  • Gillian Mahoney

Manager: David Stanton

Official: Anthony Lo Surdo SC

If you see them around the traps, wish them well.

National Domestic and Family Violence Bench Book

Thu Aug 18 2016

The new National Domestic and Family Violence Bench Book was launched today by the Australian Institute of Judicial Administration. The Bench Book implements a key recommendation of the joint Australian Law Reform Commission Report and the New South Wales Law Reform Commission Report, Family Violence—A National Legal Response. The first stage of the National Domestic and Family Violence Bench Book is available on the Australian Institute of Judicial Administration’s website.

Volunteers needed for the Benjamin Andrew Footpath Library

Thu Aug 18 2016

The Benjamin Andrew Footpath Library needs two volunteers to spend a couple of hours in their Kennard's Storage unit in Waterloo packing books for various hostels in New South Wales. The next session is on Saturday, 20 August 2016 at 11.00am. Should you wish to volunteer, or have any questions, please contact Lisa Allen at the Bar Association Library.

Second Australian Legal History Tutorial

Thu Aug 18 2016

The Francis Forbes Society will host its second Australian Legal History Tutorial on Tuesday, 30 August 2016 at 5.15pm in the Banco Court. The topic will be Roman law and it will be delivered by Justice Emmett. Further tutorials will be scheduled throughout the remainder of the year and details will be provided shortly.

Tomorrow: 15 Bobber – the Hon Justice Burley & her Hon Judge Obradovic

Thu Aug 18 2016

Members of the NSW Bar Association are invited to attend the 15 Bobber for the Hon Justice Stephen Burley & her Hon Judge Brana Obradovic. The 15 Bobber will be held tomorrow, 19 August 2016 in the New South Wales Bar Association Common Room. Speaking for his Hon Justice Burley will be Michael Heath and the speaker for her Hon Judge Brana Obradovic is Ian Neil SC. The event begins at 5.30 PM with speeches beginning at 5.45 PM. RSVP here by 6.00pm tonight. Tickets purchased at the door will be $25.