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Statement on early guilty pleas and legal aid

Mon Dec 04 2017

President Arthur Moses SC has warned that the abolition of committals, the reduction in the quantum of discounts for late pleas, and the abolition of judicial discretion on discount is not going to reduce delays in the criminal justice system. Speaking yesterday to ABC TV's court reporter, Karl Hoerr, Mr Moses said: "You can't continue to have a court where there are 2,000 cases pending, with a small number of judges, with increasing workloads". The full text of the president's statement can be viewed here. The interview with Mr Moses SC was aired last night on ABC TV News.

Legal Services Council annual report

Fri Dec 01 2017

The Legal Services Council and the Commissioner for Uniform Legal Services Regulation have published their 2016-17 annual reports. the Uniform Law has been in operation for more than two years and this publication includes a comparative analysis of complaints and disciplinary data between NSW and Victoria, as well as a legal consumer survey on legal costs. View the annual report here.

President discusses CTP insurance with Ray Hadley

Fri Dec 01 2017
Law reform and public affairs

President Arthur Moses SC has appeared on The Ray Hadley Morning Show this morning to express the Bar Association’s concerns regarding the Motor Accident Injuries Amendment Regulation, which took effect today. Listen here.

Kirby speaks at NSW CCL dinner

Fri Dec 01 2017

Speeches

The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG spoke last week at the New South Wales Council for Civil Liberties Annual Dinner 2017 on "Return to the CCL: Advocacy & Unthinkable Challenges". A copy of that speech is available here.

Supreme Court Public Counter to reopen on Monday

Fri Dec 01 2017

The Supreme Court public registry counter will reopen on level 5 of the Law Courts Building at 9:00 AM on Monday, 4 December. The chief justice thanked the profession and other court users for their patience and support during this period.

Common Law Practice Update 104

Wed Nov 29 2017

The Bar Association has published Common Law Practice Update 104, with case notes on sections 63, 65 and 109 of the Motor Accidents Compensation Act 1999 (NSW); educational institutions' duty of care; adequacy of warning signs; reasonable foreseeability and more. Download CLPU 104.

Legal Services Council appointments

Tue Nov 28 2017
Appointments

The attorneys-general of NSW and Victoria have reappointed the inaugural members of the Legal Services Council, extending the members’ tenures until October 2020. Learn more here.

Developing a Reasonable Estimate of Fees

Tue Nov 28 2017
Free webinar series: Innovative Law Practice Techniques

The American Bar Association's Law Practice Division and the New South Wales Bar Association will hold a joint webinar panel discussion on Friday, 1 December 2017 at 8.00am AEST. The topic will be "Developing a Reasonable Estimate of Fees". The moderator will be Philippe Doyle Gray. Learn more here.

United Nations Day Lecture

Tue Nov 28 2017
International trade law

The United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) was founded 50 years ago. The United Nations Day Lecture will be held on Tuesday, 5 December 2017 in Court 1, Federal Court of Australia, Queens Square between 5.15pm and 6.30pm. The lecture is an initiative of the UNCITRAL National Coordination Committee for Australia (UNCCA). The speaker will be Tim Castle, barrister and chair of UNCCA and the chair will be Chrissa Loukas SC. It will be presented around Australia to introduce lawyers, academics and students to the past and future work of UNCITRAL. Admission will be free, but registration is required. Learn more here.

NSW Bar Association CPD Conferences 2018

Tue Nov 28 2017

Registrations are now OPEN for the New South Wales Bar Association Regional CPD Conferences. For more details about each venue, speakers and the costs involved please click here

  • Saturday, 17 February 2018 - North Coast
  • Saturday, 24 February 2018 - Parramatta
  • Saturday, 10 March 2018 - Newcastle
  • Saturday, 17 & Sunday, 18 March 2018 - Orange
  • Saturday, 24 March 2018 – Sydney

The conferences are run by registration only and places in each conference are strictly limited. To register and pay to secure your place please click here

Further speaker details will be made available over the coming weeks. These will be advertised in In Brief as well as on the NSW Bar Association Website.

For any questions about CPD requirements, conferences or the general CPD program, please contact the Professional Development Department on 02 9232 4919 or via e-mail cpd@nswbar.asn.au

Coming up in CPD tonight

Tue Nov 28 2017

Tuesday, November 28 2017: 'Complaints Against Judicial Officers: The Role of the Judicial Commission'

Presented by Ernest Schmatt, Chief Executive, Judicial Commission of New South Wales and chaired by Arthur Moses SC. For full details please download a flyer here.

This seminar will commence at 5.15 pm in the Bar Association Common Room.

Coming up in CPD next week

Fri Nov 24 2017

Tuesday, November 28 2017: 'Complaints Against Judicial Officers: The Role of the Judicial Commission'

Presented by Ernest Schmatt, Chief Executive, Judicial Commission of New South Wales and chaired by Arthur Moses SC. For full details please download a flyer here.

This seminar will commence at 5.15 pm in the Bar Association Common Room.

CPD Record Form

Fri Nov 24 2017

Members are reminded to accrue 10 points worth of continuing professional development (CPD) activities each year. In addition to completing sufficient CPD activities between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018, you are required to maintain a record and retain in for three years in accordance with rule 12 of the Legal Profession Uniform Continuing Professional Development (Barristers) Rules 2015. A newly updated CPD Record Form makes it easier to record, amend and save your CPD activity. The new form is available on the NSW Bar website and attached here for your convenience.

Twilight Tour of Little Steps Early Learning Centre

Fri Nov 24 2017

Little Steps Early Learning Centre invite members to a Twilight Tour at 1 Bligh Street on Thursday, 30 November 2017 at 6.30pm-8.30pm. Learn more here.

More information about the Bar Association's childcare scheme and Little Steps Early Learning Centre is available here and here.

New regulations unfair to motor accident victims

Fri Nov 24 2017
Law reform and public affairs

President Arthur Moses SC has issued a media release regarding regulations made under the Motor Accident Injuries Act 2017, which will significantly reduce the rights of many innocent car crash victims. His comments were reported in the Sydney Morning Herald, which can be viewed here.

"Over the last eighteen months the legal profession has been closely involved in consultations with the Government on a workable model which could bring savings in greenslip prices while retaining the legal rights of the seriously injured. The passage of the Motor Accident Injuries Bill 2017 into law was the first result of these consultations. However, the Regulations which have come at the end of this process have a number of important defects which compromise the legal rights of many injured accident victims" Mr Moses said.

View the media release here.

NSW Bar Association CPD Conferences 2018

Fri Nov 24 2017

Registrations are now OPEN for the New South Wales Bar Association Regional CPD Conferences. For more details about each venue, speakers and the costs involved please click here

  • Saturday, 17 February 2018 - North Coast
  • Saturday, 24 February 2018 - Parramatta
  • Saturday, 10 March 2018 - Newcastle
  • Saturday, 17 & Sunday, 18 March 2018 - Orange
  • Saturday, 24 March 2018 – Sydney

The conferences are run by registration only and places in each conference are strictly limited. To register and pay to secure your place please click here

Further speaker details will be made available over the coming weeks. These will be advertised in In Brief as well as on the NSW Bar Association Website.

For any questions about CPD requirements, conferences or the general CPD program, please contact the Professional Development Department on 02 9232 4919 or via e-mail cpd@nswbar.asn.au

Save the date : 2018 Personal Injury/Common Law Conference

Fri Nov 24 2017

The 2018 Personal Injury and Common Law Conference will be held at the Hilton Sydney on Saturday 3 March. The conference offers 5 CPD points.

Speaker details and online registration will be made available over the coming weeks. These will be advertised in In Brief as well as on the NSW Bar Association Website.

For any questions about CPD requirements, conferences or the general CPD program, please contact the Professional Development Department on 02 9232 4919 or via e-mail cpd@nswbar.asn.au

Desmond Christopher Andersen QC (1932-2017)

Fri Nov 24 2017
Vale

Desmond Andersen QC, formerly of 8 Garfield Barwick Chambers, died last night. Members will be advised of funeral arrangements as soon as they are known.

Robert Dubler SC appointed to NCAT

Fri Nov 24 2017
Appointments

NSW Attorney General Mark Speakman SC has announced the appointment of Robert Dubler SC as a part-time senior member of the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal for a term of five years. Bar Association President Arthur Moses SC has welcomed the appointment, saying: "Mr Dubler SC comes highly qualified for the position and will make an important contribution to the work of the tribunal."

High risk offenders legislation passes through the NSW Parliament

Thu Nov 23 2017
Law reform and public affairs

The NSW Government's most recent counter-terrorism legislation, the Terrorism (High Risk Offenders) Bill has passed both houses of parliament. President Arthur Moses SC told AAP that the Bar Association was opposed to any legislation which kept people in jail based on "speculation".

"The threat of terrorism is serious and cannot be underestimated," he said.

"However the way to keep the community safe is not to take away the rights of people but to provide police with proper resources to properly investigate matters, charge suspects and bring people before the courts to be dealt with according to law."

Seven News and Sky each ran stories on the legislation. He said:

During debate in the Legislative Council, David Shoebridge MLC (Greens) referred to opposition expressed by the Bar Association. He said:

This law is seen as offensive not only by The Greens. It is opposed also by the New South Wales Bar Association, which stated that: "The New South Wales Bar Association has consistently opposed the statutory High Risk Offenders regime. The amendments proposed will extend the cohort of offenders caught by the Act, remove safeguards and are contrary to established sentencing principles." We join with the Bar Association in its condemnation of this bill.

ADRA Christmas workshop and dinner

Thu Nov 23 2017

Members are invited to the Australian Dispute Resolution Association's Christmas Event on Tuesday, 28 November 2017. There will be a workshop from 3.15pm to 5.30pm, followed by Christmas Dinner at Silks Cafe. For more information, or to reserve your place, click here.

Indigenous pre-law students visit to Bar Association

Wed Nov 22 2017
Diversity

As part of the NSW Bar Association’s Reconciliation Action Plan, we host an annual visit from the Indigenous students attending the UNSW pre-law course. This year the visit is on Tuesday, 12 December and starts at 9.00 am in the Bar Association’s common room.

We are seeking volunteers to attend the morning discussion about life as a barrister and then take several students back to Chambers. A visit to the Supreme Court starts at around 12.30 pm and then there is a lunch in the common room.

The objective is to demonstrate to the new law students the role of barristers and to encourage them to see the Bar as a future career option.

We need volunteers. Please come for an enjoyable morning and a rewarding exchange with some aspiring law students. If you are able to attend, please contact Chris Ronalds SC on ronalds@fjc.net.au.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Chris Ronalds SC

Chair, Indigenous Barristers’ Strategy Working Party

Motor Accident Guidelines and Regulation to take effect on 1 December

Wed Nov 22 2017

The Motor Accident Injuries Act 2017 (NSW) (the Act) establishes a new scheme of compulsory third party (CTP) insurance and the provision of benefits and support relating to people injured as a consequence of motor accidents in New South Wales (NSW). The new scheme commences on 1 December 2017 and applies to motor accidents occurring on or after 1 December 2017.

Pursuant to s 10.2 of the Act, the Motor Accident Guidelines have been published in the NSW Government Gazette. The Guidelines apply to motor accidents occurring on or after 1 December 2017 and take effect on that day. The Guidelines relating to premium determination apply to premium rate filings for all third party policies commencing on or after 1 December 2017.

Also made under the Motor Accidents Injuries Act 2017 is the Motor Accidents Amendment Regulation 2017, which commences on 1 December 2017.