Australian Women Lawyers - Penrith Chapter Lunch

Wed Oct 17 2018

Join us at 1pm for lunch and networking, just a chance to chat and meet local members of the profession.

  • 1pm Lunch Wednesday 24 October 2018
  • Penrith Bowling & Recreation Club Ltd
  • McAuley Room, Woodriff St & Derby Street, Penrith NSW 2750

Book online or click here to download flyer/registration form

Silk scrolls presentation

Tue Oct 16 2018

Newly appointed senior counsel will be presented with their appointment scrolls today at 5.15pm in the Bar Association’s Common Room, with the scrolls being presented by Chief Justice T F Bathurst AC at 5.45pm. All members are welcome to attend.

Workers Compensation Commission Seminar Series 2018

Tue Oct 16 2018

The Workers Compensation Commission will present a series of free, morning seminars for legal professionals in locations across NSW throughout October and November 2018. Places are still available at the following sessions:

  • Wagga Wagga 30/10
  • Port Macquarie 01/11
  • Tweed Heads 06/11
  • Coffs Harbour 08/11
  • Tamworth 13/11
  • Penrith 14/11
  • Orange 15/11
  • Newcastle 20/11
  • Sydney 27/11
  • Wollongong 22/11

The seminars will cover:

  • Legislative changes
  • Digital platforms including online lodgment
  • Good practice

To register, visit Eventbrite and search for Workers Compensation Commission and the location of the seminar you wish to attend. For more information contact

Moment(o)s at the Wayside Chapel

Tue Oct 16 2018

October is Mental Health Month and in keeping with that theme, members are invited to the free film screening of Elaine Paton's Moment(o)s on 25 October 2018 from 6.00-7.00pm (with Q&A) at the Wayside Chapel. Learn more here.

CPD seminar cancelled

Tue Oct 16 2018

"Criminal Trial Advocacy - Observations from the Bench", scheduled for Wednesday, 17 October, has been cancelled. The organisers regret any inconvenience caused.

Election of 2019 Bar Council - the Ballot

Tue Oct 16 2018

Ballot papers for the election of the 2019 Bar Council were mailed to all those eligible to vote on Friday, 12 October 2018. Any member who has not received their ballot paper by COB Friday, 19 October, and who wishes to cast a vote, should contact the Bar Association’s certification officer, Ms Abha Malla, on ph: 9232 4055 or e-mail

Members should take care to complete the ballot paper in accordance with the instructions provided. If any member has a query concerning the completion of the ballot paper they should contact the Bar Association for assistance.

The ballot closes at 1.00pm on Thursday, 1 November 2018.

Greg Tolhurst

Executive Director & Returning Officer

Human Rights Awards' Law Award

Tue Oct 16 2018

Please find here the list of finalists for the 2018 Human Rights Awards’ Law Award. This year saw the highest number of nominations since the awards began. The five finalists for the 2018 Human Rights Awards’ Law Award have been selected, including from the NSW Bar, Professor Andrew Byrnes.

The winner will be announced at the ceremony on Friday 14 December in Sydney. Tickets are on sale now! Click here to book.

Upcoming Forbes Society tutorials

Tue Oct 16 2018

Part 2 of the tutorial "History of Equity" will be delivered by the Hon J Campbell QC on Wednesday, 22 August 2018. A further tutorial, on "The History of the Law of Commercial Arbitration" will be delivered by Chief Justice T F Bathurst AC on Thursday, 18 October 2018.

All tutorials will be held at 5.15pm in Banco Court. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Barrister’s trust money account – Fees in advance

Mon Oct 15 2018
Bar standards

Clause 15 of the Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Regulation 2015 (the LPULAR) permits a barrister to receive and hold fees in advance in direct access matters only and subject to a number of restrictions. Further information relating to clause 15, including details of those restrictions, is available here.

The obligations associated with fees in advance in direct access matters apply whenever a barrister receives money before the work paid for is completed. This includes, for example:

  • Fees received in the days before an appearance, conference, or other work;
  • Fees received at the commencement of an appearance, conference or other work; and
  • Fees received in the course of a multi-day appearance, conference, or other work, to the extent that the fees are paid in full for the whole of the appearance, conference, or other work.

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 at the following link.

If you have any further questions about clause 15 of the LPULAR, please contact the Bar Association’s Legal Officer, Angela Huang, on 9232 4055 or by email at

CPD seminar cancelled

Mon Oct 15 2018

"Criminal Trial Advocacy - Observations from the Bench", scheduled for Wednesday, 17 October, has been cancelled. The organisers regret any inconvenience caused.

No blanket exception for private schools to expel kids for their sexuality exists...

Fri Oct 12 2018
Law reform and public affairs

No blanket exception to anti-discrimination laws currently exists to allow private schools to expel students on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity – and no such exemption should ever be introduced, according to the Law Council of Australia.

Significant political and public debate has occurred this week about the right of private schools to expel students on the basis of their sexuality, following leaks of the recommendations from the Ruddock Religious Freedom Review.

The Law Council of Australia’s President-elect, Arthur Moses SC, said while specific exemptions to anti-discrimination laws existed in certain jurisdictions, no blanket exception applied.

To read the full media release, click here.

NSW Bar joins Uniting’s Fair Treatment campaign for drug reform

Fri Oct 12 2018

The New South Wales Bar Association has lent its support to Uniting’s “Fair Treatment” campaign calling for meaningful reform of illicit drug laws to save lives.

President Arthur Moses SC joined global drug reform campaigner Sir Richard Branson, the Executive Secretary of the Global Commission on Drug Policy, Dr Khalid Tinasti, and Medical Director at the Sydney Medically Supervised Injecting Centre, Dr Marianne Jauncey, to officially launch the campaign in Sydney today.

“There is a pressing need for legislators to reconsider the current laws in relation to illicit drugs. The NSW Bar Association is proud to support the Uniting Fair Treatment campaign which urges a fresh approach regarding illegal drugs,” Mr Moses SC said today. “Illicit drug use places the lives of users at risk, causes distress to their families, enriches drug traffickers and harms the community who bear the brunt of crime to fund drug habits. However, the law is failing to decrease the level of illicit drug use in the community. Our members every day in courts around the State see the harm that is caused by the current prohibitionist model with its heavy reliance on the criminal law rather than health-based options to address drug use.”

In today’s Australian newspaper, available here (paywall) Sir Richard Branson said that “Good policy protects people. Our current drug policies protect no one — neither those who use ¬illicit drugs nor the rest of us… Offering people a health response rather than a criminal one saves lives and communities. It also saves money.” “I am delighted to be in Australia this week, alongside my colleagues from the Global Commission on Drug Policy, to help launch the Fair Treatment campaign. The campaign is led by the Uniting Church — the first church in the world to pass a resolution to campaign actively for drug law reform — and is backed by a coalition of 60 partner organisations. It is calling for a people’s summit on treatment and advocating for sensible, evidence-based policies that can save thousands of Australian lives and help end the war on drugs,” Sir Richard said. In 2014 the Bar Association’s Criminal Law Committee released a discussion paper that concluded the current approach to the prohibition against personal use and possession of certain types of illicit drugs had failed to decrease levels of personal use which in turn places drug users at risk and causes harm to the community.

Mr Moses SC said that through no fault of their own, law enforcement agencies have struggled to keep up with the sale of synthetic drugs, the internet drug trade and the illicit use of pharmaceutical drugs.

“Politicians need to be honest about these failures and examine realistic solutions rather than giving the community false comfort by pretending that we are successfully combatting illicit drug use. The Association’s Discussion Paper analysed the option of Government-sanctioned legal supply of certain drugs. There are strong arguments that such an approach would bring an end to the black market of drug supply and organised crime profiting from the misery associated with drug use. However, this proposal, which is largely based on the law enacted in Portugal, needs to be carefully and properly considered to avoid unintended consequences,” said Mr Moses SC.

“A first and realistic step may be to decriminalise the personal use of certain illicit drugs which will encourage people to come forward to have drug content tested and seek treatment for addiction without the fear of being prosecuted. Harm reduction has been found to be more cost-effective than law enforcement in reducing levels of use. This will be a better outcome for users, their families and the community,” Mr Moses SC said.

Part-time employment opportunities for First Nations law students

Fri Oct 12 2018

Do you need some clerical and administrative or research assistance to run your practice or Clerk's office?

If the answer is yes - why not employ a First Nations law student? There are some law students currently looking for this opportunity.

As part of the Bar Association's Reconciliation Action Plan, all barristers, clerks and Chambers are encouraged to identify part-time employment opportunities for 2018 and 2019 for First Nations law students.

Ideally, this would be for a day or half day a week on a regular basis doing loose-leaf filing, administrative or clerical tasks for first and second year students and including research tasks for more senior students. Longer periods during university vacation is also a wonderful opportunity for the students. Also, a group of barristers could engage one student and share the work load and costs.

This initiative needs the ongoing support of more members of the NSW Bar to ensure its continued success. Learning how the Bar works and the role of barristers as well as some financial security significantly contributes to the success of the students in their law studies.

Please contact Chris Ronalds AO SC on or 9229 7378 if you have any employment opportunities or questions.


Career at the Bar University Open Day

Fri Oct 12 2018

The Career at the Bar University Open Day is on 24 October 2018. It's a great opportunity for students to meet members of the legal profession, barristers and judicial officers. Register here.

15 Bobber for Justice Kelly Rees - last day to register

Fri Oct 12 2018

Members of the NSW Bar Association are invited to attend the 15 Bobber for the Hon Justice Kelly Rees, celebrating her recent appointment to the Supreme Court of New South Wales. The 15 Bobber will be held Friday, 19 October in the New South Wales Bar Association Common Room. Speaking for her Honour will be Mr Peter Braham SC. The event begins at 5.15pm with speeches beginning at 5.30pm. RSVP here by Friday, 12 October 2018.

UN Day Lecture 2018 – 24 October 2018

Fri Oct 12 2018

This years UN Day Lecture by Hon Roger Gyles AO QC commemorates the 60th Anniversary of the New York Convention which underpins the system of international commercial arbitration.

All members are welcome but registration with UNCCA is required as numbers are filling up fast, see flyer here.

Australian Disputes Centre Mediation Training and Accreditation Program

Thu Oct 11 2018

Join the Australian Disputes Centre’s Mediation Training and Accreditation Program in Sydney in October and November. Delivered by Australia’s leading ADR, not-for-profit institution, this program has successfully helped many professionals integrate mediation into their professional work; honing their skills as an advocate in the context of mediation and becoming an accredited mediator. For current mediators, ADC’s program includes two professional development days.

Established by the NSW Attorney General and Sir Laurence Street in 1986, the Australian Disputes Centre has trained many of the legal community’s most respected mediators throughout Australia.

Upcoming Sydney dates:

ALHR & NJP Human Rights Dinner - Tickets now on sale

Thu Oct 11 2018

Tickets are now on sale for the ALHR - NJP Human Rights Dinner being held on 26 October 2018 at 7.00pm at the Sky Phoenix Restaurant, 188 Pitt Street Sydney.

Join Australian Lawyers for Human Rights and the National Justice Project for dinner to support their work to protect and promote human rights in Australia. Special guest speakers are Tony McAvoy SC and Larissa Behrendt. For further information and to book please click here.

Greenway Chambers performing at Law Rocks on Thursday 25 October from 7pm

Thu Oct 11 2018

Greenway Chambers’ band is performing at Law Rocks on Thursday 25 October at Oxford Art Factory. All proceeds go to the charities Lily’s Getaway and Yalari.

The gig starts at 7pm. The band is 3rd out of a line-up that also includes bands from Norton Rose Fulbright, DLA Piper, Corrs and KPMG.

Tickets are $45 each and can be purchased from the Law Rocks website or direct from Greenway’s clerk, Imogen Thomas by email here.

Final two Academy of Law events for 2018

Wed Oct 10 2018

The Academy has two events remaining in NSW this year, both to be held in the Banco Court:

  1. On Tuesday 27 November, the third and final Access to Justice event (this one will be on Non-financial barriers to access to justice). For further information click here. DATE: Tuesday 27 November 2018 TIME: 5:00pm – 6:30pm PLACE: The Banco Court, Level 13 Law Courts Building, Queen’s Square, Sydney

  2. On Wednesday 28 November the launch by Justice Margaret Beazley of the book of last year's Conference papers, The Future of Australian Legal Education. For further information click here. DATE: Wednesday 28 November 2018 TIME: 5.30 pm PLACE: The Banco Court, Level 13 Law Courts Building, Queen's Square, Sydney

Bar Book Club

Wed Oct 10 2018

The next meeting of the Bar Book Club will be held at 5.30pm on 16 October 2018 - a new time due to Bar Association change in office hours. The book is We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson. Good Reads reviews here.

Defamation law reform in an online world

Tue Oct 09 2018
Law reform and public affairs

The Law Council of Australia is hosting two seminars on comparative law issues in defamation law reform.

Calls for reform of Australia’s outdated defamation laws have been revived now that NSW Attorney-General Mark Speakman SC has released the long-delayed Review of the Defamation Act 2005 (NSW). The Attorney-General has asked the national Committee of Attorneys General to undertake a “cyber-age reboot” of the uniform legislation.

Two seminars will be held on 31 October and 8 November 2018. The first of these considers defence issues, while the second of these focuses on specific problem areas for plaintiffs. These seminars focus on how the Section 49 Review has dealt with internationally discussed freedom of speech issues in an online world.

For more information and to register for the seminars please visit the Law Council of Australia website here.