LCA welcomes NT youth justice efforts

Mon Apr 23 2018
Law reform and public affairs

The Law Council of Australia has welcomed the NT Government’s $229.6 million investment for child protection and youth justice but has repeated its call for the NT Government to give priority to raising the age of criminal responsibility from 10 to 12 and not detaining children under 14. Read the Law Council's media release here.

Request for barristers to judge Senior Mooting Competition at UNSW

Mon Apr 23 2018

The Allens Linklaters Senior Mooting Competition is open to senior law students at UNSW. The Competition Directors are requesting the assistance of barristers to volunteer as judges in the second preliminary round, held between 14–24 May 2018.

Moots will be held at the UNSW CBD Campus on O’Connell Street, or the UNSW Kensington Campus in the Law Building (depending on your preference). We can arrange for moots to start at 6pm, 6.30pm or 7pm. Moots run for between 90 mins to 2 hours.

This round’s problem question covers Corporations Law. Particular expertise in this area is not necessary – a detailed bench memorandum will be provided to you in advance.

Our Competition depends for its success on the generosity of experienced advocates. Your time would be greatly appreciated. If you are interested, please fill out this very short registration form.

If you have any questions, please contact Fiona Pyliotis and Matthew Shields, the Competition Directors, at

District Court & DDT appointment

Fri Apr 20 2018

Attorney General Mark Speakman today announced the appointment of Wendy Strathdee, barrister, to the District Court of NSW and to the Dust Diseases Tribunal. Ms Strathdee will be sworn in and begin sitting on the DDT from Tuesday, 22 May. Members will be advised of swearing-in arrangements as soon as they are known. Learn more here.

Early appropriate guilty pleas

Fri Apr 20 2018

Public Defenders are presenting a panel discussion on "Early Appropriate Guilty Pleas: Decisions, duties and ethical issues. A panel discussion for defence lawyers." The seminar will cover disclosure, briefs of evidence, s 72 obligations, fitness and offers.

Panel members are: Richard Wilson and Sophia Beckett, Public Defenders with Keppie Waters and Robert Hoyles from Legal Aid NSW.

  • Date: 8 May 2018 from 5 - 6:30 pm.
  • Venue: Public Defenders Chambers, 23 /1 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst.
  • Registration: Please contact Kieran Darcy on 9268 3196 or to register asap as spaces are limited.

[NOTE: pre-reading will be forwarded to participants on registration]

Bar Association prizes awarded at Macquarie Law School

Fri Apr 20 2018

Last night Bar Councillor Courtney Ensor represented President Arthur Moses SC at Macquarie Law School's awards night. There she presented the following Bar Association prizes:

  • Dispute Management and Resolution: to Kaitlin Jamieson
  • Remedies, Reparations and Resolutions in Law: to Jasmine Logaraj
  • Indigenous Peoples and the Law: to Jacob Roche
  • Jessup International Law Moot: to Nathan Ricardo

Local Court swearings-in on Monday

Fri Apr 20 2018

Andrew Miller and Leanne Robinson will be sworn-in on Monday, 23 April 2018 in courtroom 5.2 of the Downing Centre Local Court. Paresh Khandhar will speak on behalf of the NSW Bar. Wigs and gowns are not to be worn.

Bar FC kicks off in 2018

Fri Apr 20 2018
Bar sports

Yesterday, Bar FC commenced the 2018 season playing in the Domain Soccer League. It was the first time in our eleven year history that Bar FC had five women in the line-up .

Our first opponents Ausgrid were well organized defensively and managed to successfully hold off Bar FC’s early pressure, resulting in the game being tied (0-0). With Lang and Coutinho dominating the centre of the pitch, they created a number of early chances for strikers Stanton (Jnr.) and Santucci. Shortly before half time, an excellent cross by Montieth just needed a Bar FC head to finish off a great Bar FC move. Stanton (Sir Alex) rallied the team at half time pointing out that a few more shots on goal should bring about the desired result. Coutinho answered the call but was unlucky when a well struck shot from outside the area sailed just over the cross bar. He was however the managers pick for player of the match. Whilst the team play was a little scrappy at times, at least the off season cobwebs have now been cleared.

Bar FC also welcomed newcomers Graham Connolly, Elly Aitkenhead, Thomas Liu, Despina Christofis and Savitha Swami to the team. For those interested in joining Bar FC it is never too late to do so. Please contact David Stanton at for further details should you wish to do so. Our next game is Thursday 3 May 2018 against Sydney Business School.

Yesterday’s line up was as follows:

  • Elly Aitkenhead
  • Jeh Coutinho
  • Phillip Santucci
  • Rico
  • Hilary Montieth
  • Angus Lang
  • Thomas Liu
  • Tim Boyle
  • John Harris (GK)
  • Graham Connolly
  • Glenn Fredericks
  • Harry Stanton
  • Despina Christofis
  • Nicole Compton
  • Savitha Swami
  • Phillip Santucci

Law Council Update

Fri Apr 20 2018

The Law Council has published its fortnightly Update, which features stories on electoral funding and disclosure, the Identity-matching Services Bill 2018 and the Commonwealth Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse Bill 2017. Catch up on the latest Law Council media releases and submissions to parliamentary committees and other bodies.

ALAANZ annual conference

Thu Apr 19 2018

The Aviation Law Association of Australia and NZ is holding its annual conference in Sydney this year – on 2-4 May. Members might be interested in attending fully or for a day or half day. $1,490 full rate, $640.00 day rate and $350 half day (lunch is an extra option at $50 on the half days but can be included in registration).

For more details contact the Secretariat at or register here.

Bar Cover update 2018

Wed Apr 18 2018

Bar Cover provides Sickness and Accident income protection cover exclusively for practising barrister members of the New South Wales Bar Association. Click here for your Bar Cover update for April 2018.

Deadhouse: Tales of Sydney Morgue – 25% Discount Ticket Offer

Wed Apr 18 2018

Blancmange Productions and Actors Anonymous are proud to offer members a special 25% discount on tickets to any of the performances of this new immersive theatre experience depicting Sydney’s dark past.

Opening Night is Tuesday, 24 April and there are 38 performance dates to choose from, in the historic venue of The Rocks Discovery Museum, Sydney. The Louisa Collins Case deals with the four trials of Louisa Collins in 1888, which resulted in her execution in Darlinghurst Gaol in January 1889.

The Bar Association has assisted the producers with costumes so they would like to give barristers access to tickets for just $30 per person (full price is $40) or $20 concession (normally $30).

This is a great opportunity to experience some of Sydney’s true crime tales, live, in a 150 year old historic sandstone building. Discover more and purchase your tickets through the Eventbrite website.

2018 Bench & Bar Dinner

Wed Apr 18 2018

Full tables for the 2018 Bench & Bar Dinner are sold-out. There are still single tickets available to be seated in groups of up to 4 guests. Should you wish to be added to the waitlist, please contact

Table allocations for the dinner will be sent out via In Brief on Thursday 3 May.

ECAR at the AAT

Wed Apr 18 2018
Help wanted

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) is seeking proposals from individuals to assist with Early Case Assessment and Resolution (ECAR) at the AAT. Suitably qualified and experienced individuals will be engaged on an as-needed basis and will typically conduct conferences and conciliations to cover periods of leave and workload peaks.

Dispute resolution specialists with experience managing a high volume of review applications, complaints handling or dispute resolution activities are encouraged to apply. A recognised legal qualification and accreditation or qualifications in mediation, arbitration or other relevant dispute resolution is required.

Learn more here.

Applications close on 18 May 2018.

Tonight: Crisis in Legal Aid

Wed Apr 18 2018
Law reform and public affairs

The Bar Association tonight will host a forum to discuss the decline in funding for Legal Aid in NSW. It has been 11 years since the last increase in Legal Aid rates for counsel in NSW. During that time, funds for preparation of matters have decreased even whilst pre-trial procedural requirements have increased. This seminar will look at what steps the Bar Association is taking, and can take, to prevent the situation from worsening. Members are urged to attend and provide their views to assist the Bar Association with its funding campaign. Learn more here.

Brown, Probuild, and Kaldas: the courts in a democracy

Tue Apr 17 2018

The Australian Association of Constitutional Law will host a seminar on "Brown, Probuild, and Kaldas: the courts in a democracy". It will discuss the following recent decisions on constitutional law and statutory construction:

  • Brown v Tasmania [2017] HCA 43
  • Probuild Constructions (Aust) Pty Ltd v Shade Systems Pty Ltd [2018] HCA 4
  • Kaldas v Barbour [2017] NSWCA 275

  • Date: Thursday, 19 April 2018

  • Time: 5.30pm-7.00pm
  • Place: Federal Court of Australia, Queens Square (Courtroom 18A)


  • Frances Gordon (Sixth Floor Selborne Wentworth)
  • Perry Herzfeld (Eleven Wentworth) / Celia Winnett (Sixth Floor Selborne Wentworth)
  • David Hume (Sixth Floor Selborne Wentworth)

Chair: Meg O’Brien (Eleven Wentworth)

Book launch: Mediation Quest

Tue Apr 17 2018

The Australian Dispute Resolution Association Inc. (ADRA) invites members to the book launch for Mediation Quest: Making Sense of Loss, by Dr Katherine Johnson, on Tuesday, 24 April 2018 at 6.30pm at the Law Society of NSW. For more information, or register your attendance, visit the ADRA website.

Save the date: the inaugural Bathurst Lecture

Mon Apr 16 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.

The lecture will take place at The Banco Court, Level 13, Supreme Court of NSW, Law Courts Building, Queens Square at 5:15 pm.

A Baltic Adventure (September 2018 )

Mon Apr 16 2018

Conference Travel Club, by professionals for professionals, combining professional and personal development that fulfils CPD requirements in a way that allows you to choose what you learn, whilst enjoying unique, luxury travel to exciting destinations. What an unforgettable experience to travel to the scenic Baltic (14 September – 8 October 2018) and wander the cobbled pathways of medieval cities and return inspired, refreshed and renewed. For more information and full details visit Conference Travel Club website or email Lynne Mathias or Louise Mathias.

AAL seminar on access to justice

Mon Apr 16 2018

The Australian Academy of Law will hold a similar series in 2018 on "Access to Justice: the Breadth of the Concept of Justice". The first will be held Monday, 30 April 2018 from 5.30 pm to 7.00 pm in the Banco Court, Queens Square. Learn more here.

Part-time employment opportunities wanted for First Nations law students

Mon Apr 16 2018

Do you need some clerical, administrative or research assistance to run your practice? If the answer is yes - why not employ a First Nations law student? There are a number of 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 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 or research and includes some mentoring and guidance for the student.

This initiative has been highly successful for a number of First Nations law students and needs the ongoing support of more members of the Bar to ensure its continued success. Contact with the Bar as well as some financial security significantly contributes to the success of the students at their law studies.

Please contact Chris Ronalds SC on or 9229 7378 if you have any openings.

Greg Tolhurst
Executive Director

The Hon C S C Sheller AO QC (1933-2018)

Mon Apr 16 2018

The Honourable Charles Simon Camac Sheller AO QC died this morning. The president of the NSW Bar Association, Arthur Moses SC said: “He was one of the great jurists of the NSW Court of Appeal. He will be remembered by the NSW Bar as a judge of outstanding intellect, exemplary fairness, compassion and integrity whose judgments continue to have an impact on the development of the law in NSW.”

C S C Sheller was admitted to the New South Wales Bar in May 1959. He took silk in November 1975. He was appointed to the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal in November 1991. At a ceremony in the Banco Court in April 2005 marking his retirement from the bench, the Hon J J Spigelman AC, then chief justice of New South Wales, said:

In the 180 year history of this Court there have been numerous judges who have displayed many of the judicial virtues: learning, wisdom, compassion, eloquence, robust independence, impartiality, attentiveness, diligence, common sense, clarity of thought and of expression, administrative skills and strength of character. Few have had all of these qualities and to the high level, that has been manifest by the Honourable Justice Simon Sheller for the entire period of over thirteen years that you have served as a Judge and Judge of Appeal of this Court.

There is no area of this Court’s jurisdiction that your Honour did not touch. There is no area that you touched that you do not adorn. You have delivered leading judgments on the duties of company directors, on the law of options, on takeovers and winding ups, on the lifting of the corporate veil, on equitable setoffs and constructive trusts, on fatal accident claims, on the duty of care of local authorities and hospitals, on the effect of fraudulent conduct on insurance policies, on the requirements of procedural fairness in various statutory bodies, on the duties of executors, on the disbarment of legal practitioners, on the law of declarations, on the standing to obtain injunctions, on the rights of beneficiaries to have access to trust documents, on sentencing for sexual offences, on identification evidence based on photographs, on the withdrawal of a guilty plea, on the ‘perils of the sea’ exception to carriers liability and on the valuation of a dredge. There is no point in singling out any one of these judgments, nor in extending the list further.

Between 2000 and 2004 he served as the president of the Judicial Conference of Australia. He was also chairman of the Supreme Court’s Building Committee from 1993 to 2005 and oversaw the award-winning renovation of Francis Greenway’s original Supreme Court building.

In his farewell to Justice Sheller, Chief Justice Spigelman concluded by saying: “Thank you for many things, but thank you most of all for providing all of us a role model as to how a judge should behave.”

Members will be advised of funeral arrangements as soon as they are known.

Coming up in CPD

Mon Apr 16 2018

Thursday, April 19 2018 - Concurrent evidence: Giving evidence in the “hot tub”

A panel discussion with leading clinical and forensic psychiatrists’ Dr Lisa Brown and Dr Jonathan Phillips. Moderated by Richard Weinstein SC. 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.

NSW Bar FC Season 2018 Launch

Fri Apr 13 2018

The Domain Soccer League commences next week with Bar FC's first outing against Ausgrid on Thursday, 19 April 2018 at 1.15 pm.

Bar FC encourages all members of the Bar, the judiciary and clerks regardless of skill level to join in the fun and camaraderie of football in the Domain. If you are not able to play, your support is always welcomed! Games are played on the ground atop the Domain Car Park. A full copy of the current competition draw is attached.

Enquiries about joining the squad should be addressed to the Manager, David (Sir Alex) Stanton (8233 0345, or to Anthony Lo Surdo SC (9223 3181,

Crisis in Legal Aid

Fri Apr 13 2018
Law reform and public affairs

On Wednesday, 18 April 2018 the Bar Association will host a seminar to highlight the decline in funding for Legal Aid in NSW. It has been 11 years since the last increase in Legal Aid rates for counsel in NSW. During that time, funds for preparation of matters have decreased even whilst pre-trial procedural requirements have increased. This seminar will look at what steps the Bar Association is taking, and can take, to prevent the situation from worsening. Learn more here.

Coming up in CPD next week

Fri Apr 13 2018

Thursday, April 19 2018 - Concurrent evidence: Giving evidence in the “hot tub”

A panel discussion with leading clinical and forensic psychiatrists’ Dr Lisa Brown and Dr Jonathan Phillips. Moderated by Richard Weinstein SC. 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.