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Western Sydney deserves equal access to justice

Thu Mar 29 2018
Law reform and public affairs

The Parramatta Advertiser has published an opinion piece by President Arthur Moses SC, which calls upon state and federal governments to end the chronic under-resourcing of courts in western Sydney, particularly the Parramatta Registry of the Family Court and the Federal Circuit Court.

"The time has come for the justice system to provide equal access to the people of Western Sydney. This means both State and Federal Governments spending the taxes of Western Sydney residents on a justice system to serve them in Western Sydney", Mr Moses concluded.

New Indigenous court must be a priority

Thu Mar 29 2018
Law reform and public affairs

In the wake of this week's ALRC report on Indigenous incarceration, The Australian today published an opinion piece by President Arthur Moses SC urging the NSW Government to adopt the commission's recommendations, particularly insofar as they support the establishment of the NSW Walama Court.

"The model involves community participation and greater supervision resulting in reduced recidivism and increased compliance with court orders to better protect the community. It is not a “soft on crime” initiative but rather a more effective manner to supervise offenders post-sentence which would enhance rehabilitation and prevent re-offending", Mr Moses said.

Read the text of the article here.

NEW! Childcare available at The Pavilion located at 126 Phillip Street

Thu Mar 29 2018
Member services and benefits

The NSW Bar Association childcare offering has expanded to The Pavilion Centre located at level 4, 146 Phillip Street. Guardian Early Learning Group is now taking enrolments for children and grandchildren of NSW Bar Association members and Chambers staff at the Pavilion and the two other centres in the Sydney CBD (Castlereagh Street Early Learning Centre located at 9 Castlereagh Street and Little Steps Early Learning Centre, located at 1 Bligh Street).

NSW Bar Association members and Chambers staff receive priority for a limited number of guaranteed places.

More information about the Pavilion centre is available here. More information about the childcare offering in general is available on our website.

Access to digital assets after death

Thu Mar 29 2018
Law reform and public affairs

The NSW Law Reform Commission will review and report on the question of access to digital assets upon a person’s death or incapacity. The commission invites preliminary submissions from interested stakeholders. The deadline for preliminary submissions is Friday, 1 June 2018. For further details, including the terms of reference and background materials, please visit the NSWLRC website.

ALRC inquiry findings back calls for a new Indigenous court in NSW

Wed Mar 28 2018
Law reform and public affairs

The Australian Law Reform Commission’s report Pathways to Justice— An Inquiry into the Incarceration Rate of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples was released today. President Arthur Moses SC has welcomed the report, describing it as "a comprehensive blueprint for urgent action to address the shameful over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in our prisons". He called for "swift and decisive action" from the Commonwealth, state and territory governments to ensure its recommendations are implemented. View the Bar Association's media release here.

Peter McGrath SC appointed to the ODPP

Wed Mar 28 2018
Appointments

Attorney General Mark Speakman SC today announced the appointment of Peter McGrath SC as a Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions for NSW. View the announcement here.

CPD Record Form

Wed Mar 28 2018

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.

Save the date: the inaugural Bathurst Lecture

Wed Mar 28 2018

On 3 May 2018, the Commercial Law Section will be holding its flagship event for the year, the inaugural Bathurst lecture, named in honour of the Hon T F Bathurst AC, Chief Justice of NSW.

The speaker will be the Hon Murray Gleeson AC QC, former Chief Justice of Australia and Chief Justice of NSW. He is speaking on the topic: “Advocate, Judge and Arbitrator: Perspectives on Commercial Law.” For full details, please download a flyer here.

The lecture will take place in the Banco Court at 5:15 pm.

25 years since the Redfern Speech

Tue Mar 27 2018

The Bar Association last night hosted a well-attended seminar in the Common Room marking 25 years since Paul Keating's Redfern Speech. Special guest speakers were Bunja Smith, the chair of the Aboriginal Legal Service and LaVerne Bellear, the CEO of the Aboriginal Medical Service. Among those in the audience were Health Minister Brad Hazzard, Shadow Attorney General Paul Lynch, Shadow Minister for Health Walt Secord, Shadow Aboriginal Affairs Minister David Harris and Police Commissioner Fuller.

President Arthur Moses SC concluded the presentations by directly quoting Sol Bellear, who was interviewed about the Redfern Speech just days before his death last year. In that interview, Mr Bellear said:

Paul Keating’s speech was the most significant speech, Prime Minister or not, has ever made to Aboriginal people in Australia, and not just to Aboriginal people, but to all of Australia. There was no guilt in it. There were no words there to make people guilty.

Mr Moses urged Australia's political leaders to accept responsibility to fix what has occurred:

Stop wringing one’s hands and implement solutions. There is an enormous amount of goodwill on both sides of the Parliament and good people who are here this evening. I hope we can start the journey to stop the increasing trend that we have seen in rates of incarceration and health issues.

The seminar ended with a Q&A session, as well as a reminder that the Australian Law Reform Commission's report on Indigenous incarceration is due to be tabled in parliament tomorrow.

Cancellation of 2018 Justice Awards

Tue Mar 27 2018
Statement from President Arthur Moses SC

The New South Wales Bar Association has recently been advised by the Law and Justice Foundation that its annual Justice Awards event for 2018 has been cancelled due to uncertainty surrounding the Foundation’s future funding. The New South Wales Bar Association has been an active supporter of the Awards, having sponsored the annual Law and Justice Volunteer Award since 2002. As a result, we were very disappointed to learn that the Foundation has been forced to cancel the event due to uncertainty regarding its future funding.

The Bar Association acknowledges the important role played by the Law and Justice Foundation in conducting and publishing evidence-based research regarding access to justice and the civil justice system, among other things, and greatly appreciates the value of the Foundation’s research work for the justice system as a whole.

The Bar Association would be deeply concerned if the level of funding for the Foundation prevented it from fulfilling its statutory responsibilities. The Foundation has indicated that it will keep the Bar Association informed of developments regarding its funding situation.

Conference Travel Club Bucket List - The Ghan and Red Centre

Tue Mar 27 2018

This is a truly unique opportunity to experience the trip of a lifetime on the Iconic Ghan through the Red Centre (11 – 22 July 2018), where CTC has developed a program where you can earn up to 12 CPD points on a variety of subjects. You can enjoy a relaxed and luxurious experience and return inspired, refreshed and renewed. For more information and full details, visit Conference Travel Club website or email Lynne Mathias or Louise Mathias

2018 International Criminal Law Congress - Byron Bay

Tue Mar 27 2018
For the diary

The 2018 International Criminal Law Congress will be held at Byron Bay 3-7 October 2018. The theme of the Congress is "Populism, power and privilege: implications for the criminal justice system". The congress will feature speakers from the judiciary, profession and academia from jurisdictions throughout Australia and New Zealand. Registration is now open and single day attendance is available. Early bird registration closes on 15 July 2018.

Coming up in CPD tonight

Tue Mar 27 2018

Tuesday, March 27 2018 -The Boundaries Between Fact and Law in Administrative Law

Presented by Kristina Stern SC and Matt Sherman. For full details, please download a flyer here.

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

For a full list of current CPD events please click here.

Justice Loukas-Karlsson SC sworn-in

Mon Mar 26 2018
Appointments

Justice Chrissa Loukas-Karlsson SC was sworn-in as a judge of the ACT Supreme Court today. ACT Attorney-General Gordon Ramsay spoke on behalf of the bar. Learn more here.

2018 influenza vaccinations

Mon Mar 26 2018
Wellbeing

The Wellbeing Committee has organised for members to receive the 2018 FluQuadri vaccine on Thursday, 29 March 2018, between 4.00pm and 6.00pm in the Common Room. Information about the vaccine is available here and here. For those who are not aged 65 or over, there is no other approved vaccine.

A consent form is available here. The cost will be $26. Register for the 2018 flu vaccination here. For more information, please email the coordinator of services and benefits, Chris Winslow.

TONIGHT - The Redfern Park Speech 25 years on

Mon Mar 26 2018

When ABC Radio National announced the results of its Unforgettable Speeches competition, the winner was "I Have a Dream", by Dr Martin Luther King Jr. Third place went to The Redfern Address, by the former prime minister, Paul Keating.

On 26 March 2018 at 5.15pm, the New South Wales Bar Association will mark the 25th Anniversary of what some argue is the greatest political speech in Australian history. The purpose is to highlight issues confronting indigenous people in the NSW legal and health systems. The event, which has been rescheduled from last December, will be held in the Common Room. Confirmed speakers are Bunja Smith, chairperson, Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT) and Le Verne Bellear, CEO, Aboriginal Medical Service Co-operative Redfern. Learn more here.

CPD Record Form

Mon Mar 26 2018

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.

Coming up in CPD this week

Mon Mar 26 2018

Tuesday, March 27 2018 -The Boundaries Between Fact and Law in Administrative Law

Presented by Kristina Stern SC and Matt Sherman. For full details, please download a flyer here.

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

For a full list of current CPD events please click here.

Criminal justice system 'on its knees'

Fri Mar 23 2018
Law reform and public affairs

The Times has reported that the criminal justice system in England is 'on its knees' ahead of the planned introduction of a new flat-fee scheme on April 1. The president of the New South Wales Bar Association, Arthur Moses SC, has warned via Twitter that a similar crisis confronts the criminal justice system in NSW. Once the profession can no longer subsidise the system through unpaid work, further delays and miscarriages of justice are likely. View the Times article here.

Review of High Court registry operations and case management system

Fri Mar 23 2018

The High Court is reviewing its registry operations and case management system with a particular emphasis on current and future electronic needs. The court is seeking to obtain the views and assistance of external users of the system. An online form has been designed to allow external users to participate in the review. The online form can be found here. The deadline for responses is Friday, 6 April 2018. Enquiries can be sent to enquiries@hcourt.gov.au or ph: (02) 6270 6857.

Legal adviser to the Senate Regulations and Ordinances Committee

Fri Mar 23 2018
Positions vacant

The Senate Standing Committee on Regulations and Ordinances is seeking expressions of interest for the position of legal adviser to the committee. The legal adviser examines all legislative instruments that come before the committee and provides the committee with an independent legal assessment of their compliance with the committee's scrutiny principles, working closely with the committee’s secretariat. The Legal Adviser is engaged as an independent contractor, not an employee. The closing date for expressions of interest is Monday, 30 April 2018.

Trust money account – Fees in advance – External Examination report due 7 June 2018

Fri Mar 23 2018

Any barrister who has, in the period 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018, received fees in advance – that is, as described in the Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Regulation 2015 (the LPULAR), money on account of legal costs for legal services in advance of the provision by the barrister of the legal services – must appoint an External Examiner to carry out an examination of the clause 15 account for the period 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018. Clause 15(2) of the LPULAR also requires that a copy of the External Examination report be provided to the Bar Council by no later than 7 June 2018. The External Examination report template, which has been amended from 2017, is available on the Bar Association’s website under the heading ‘Fees in Advance’ here.

It is essential that a barrister who receives fees in advance examines clause 15 of the LPULAR in detail. Links to the legislation can be found on the Bar Association website by following this link.

Barristers who have previously notified the Bar Association of the opening of a trust money account will be sent letters containing instructions on how to appoint an external examiner shortly.

Any questions? Please contact the Bar Association’s Legal Officer, Angela Huang, on (02) 9232 4055 or pcd@nswbar.asn.au.

Retirement of the Hon Justice Carolyn Simpson

Fri Mar 23 2018
Retirement

On Tuesday, 27 March 2018 the Supreme Court of NSW will hold a ceremonial sitting to mark the retirement of the Hon Justice Carolyn Simpson. The ceremony will take place in the Banco Court at 9.15am. President Arthur Moses SC will speak on behalf of the New South Wales Bar. Barristers should wear wigs and gowns. Senior counsel should wear full-bottomed wigs.