In Brief Issue #873


In Brief Holiday Edition

Over the next three weeks, I will be devoting most of my weekly message in In Brief to updating members on some of the signature projects currently being undertaken by the Bar Council. One of the great privileges of being President is the first-hand exposure I get to the dedication, dynamism and creativity of the members of Bar Council, the members of our many Associations and Committees, and the staff who work in the Bar Office.

So far, 2018 has been a busy year, with members of the Bar Council contributing in myriad ways through involvement in various working groups as well as the ordinary business of the Council. In all of our projects, we are guided by the vision in our Strategic Plan for the Victorian Bar: “independence, excellence, leadership, growth”. I do not see the pace letting up over the balance of the year.

Pro Bono Review

This week, I want to tell members about an ambitious project that is well underway and will come to fruition in coming months, but which has been conducted largely under the radar to date: a comprehensive review of the Victorian Bar’s pro bono duty barrister schemes with Victoria’s courts and tribunals.

The objective of the review is to consolidate and streamline our disparate programs, with a view to relaunching a much more effective and efficient system, managed via a new online portal.

We are proud of the pro bono work done by members of the Bar. Such work is seen by most barristers as a way of putting back into the community. It is difficult to measure the value of the contribution that our members make by way of pro bono service, but we can confidently predict that it is worth the equivalent of many millions of dollars per year. It is too often unheralded, and yet it can make the most profound difference to the lives of those who are assisted.

Our members are motivated to offer their services pro bono by two broad reasons: a commitment to access to justice for those in need, and a commitment to furthering the administration of justice.

Pro bono work is, of course, no substitute for properly funded legal aid or for expecting clients with means to pay for the provision of legal services. Part of the frustration with our current schemes has been a lack of quality control and inconsistently applied eligibility criteria. The Bar Council’s review is directed at addressing these and other frustrations.

In parallel with the current review, the Bar is engaged in ongoing discussions on the appropriateness of barristers providing unpaid witness advice work for the DPP. The Bar believes that work of that kind should be properly funded and not provided on a pro bono basis.

As well as providing pro bono services via the Bar’s various duty barrister schemes, members also volunteer their time and expertise via the Pro Bono Scheme administered by JusticeConnect, and via their own informal networks of clerks, firms, colleagues, friends and community groups. The current review is not concerned with those other means by which members provide pro bono services.

Developing a better referral system

If duty barrister schemes are to be sustainable, barristers volunteering their services and time must be confident about their fair administration and integrity.

A great deal of work is currently going into negotiating new protocols between each jurisdiction that makes requests for the provision of pro bono assistance and the Bar. The aim is to have each court and tribunal adopt a rule or practice note to guide the circumstances in which requests for pro bono assistance will be made, and that will provide barristers with clear and accurate information about the nature of the commitment required and why the matter merits the provision of pro bono assistance.

Eligibility criteria may include the financial means of a party, the capacity of the party to otherwise obtain legal assistance, the nature and complexity of the proceedings, whether it is appropriate for a barrister to act for the client on a direct access basis, and whether instructing solicitors will be required. 

The ‘Portal’

In partnership with the Icon Agency, the Bar is developing an online Pro Bono Barrister Portal to manage and streamline requests for pro bono assistance from courts and tribunals.

Referring courts and tribunals will be able to enter requests through the portal and barristers will be able to see and accept requests. The automated system will interface with barristers’ profile information on the Vicbar website.

The aims of the portal are to achieve greater efficiency in making referrals; an increase in barrister satisfaction; an increase in the level of service to courts and to unrepresented litigants and witnesses; better record-keeping as to the type, value and volume of pro bono assistance delivered by the Bar’s members; and quicker responses to those identified as requiring independent legal assistance.

Watch this space

Further details about the progress of the review and the development of the portal will be made available in coming weeks and months.

There are many people to thank for their ongoing work on this important project. I thank Richard Wilson, Chair of the Bar’s Pro Bono and Duty Barrister Scheme Committee, and the Committee, for embracing the review and throwing themselves into the huge amount of work that is involved in negotiating protocols with courts and tribunals. I also thank Fiona Ellis, Erin Hill and Sarah Keating, who comprise the Bar Council’s working group on pro bono issues for their work liaising with Richard and his Committee and reporting back to the Bar Council. Thanks also go to the Legal Services Board, which has provided some of the funding for the development of the portal. Heartfelt thanks go to Icon Agency, which is designing the portal. Icon has partnered with the Victorian Bar in recognition of the importance of the project and its capacity to transform the lives of those clients who benefit from the pro bono work done by our members. Finally, I thank the Bar Office for all the work it is doing on the project, under the leadership of CEO, Sarah Fregon.

Vicbar News & Events
Victorian Bar Membership Subscriptions 2018-2019

The 2018-2019 Victorian Bar subscription invoice is now available here via the orange “Online Bar Subscriptions” button (you need login to the Bar website to access this page).   

Your Guide to Membership Subscriptions is available on the Bar Subscriptions page of the website.

The Guide to membership subscriptions includes information as to how to pay your bar subscription online and also includes donation forms for members who would like to support:

This year Bar subscription materials were distributed electronically. If you would like a hard copy sent to you or require any further assistance please email or contact Daphne Ioannidis on (03) 9225 7111.

If you experience any difficulties accessing the Victorian Bar website or the online payment system please contact Trevor Robinson on (03) 9225 8314.

Register for the HK 2018 ICLC

Register for the Hong Kong 2018 International Commercial Law Conference – see our website to register and for details on the program, accommodation and flights. 

We are delighted to announce the keynote speakers will be the Hon Justice John Middleton of the Federal Court of Australia, the Hon Justice Jeremy Poon of the Court of Appeal of the High Court of Hong Kong, and the Hon Justice William Alstergren, Chief Judge of the Federal Circuit Court of Australia and Deputy Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia.

The Gala Dinner will be held at the exclusive, members-only China Club: opened by the late entrepreneur, Sir David Tang, the opulent club is located at the top of the Old Bank of China building and is home to a unique collection of contemporary Chinese art, incredible Cantonese food, and unparalleled views of Hong Kong.

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook to receive conference updates. 


SUBMISSIONS OPEN UNTIL 19 JULY - Win a free Trip to Hong Kong!

Win a trip to attend the Hong Kong 2018 International Commercial Law Conference

Prize Includes: 

  • economy return airfare;
  • complimentary full conference registration; and
  • the opportunity to participate in the Hong Kong 2018 ICLC as a panel member for one of the conference sessions. 

To win, submit a 3-page written submission on one of the following topics:

  1. Is Privacy Dead? Use and Misuse of Sensitive Data 

    Is there a right to privacy, or even an entitlement to be forgotten?
    Does or can the common law provide an answer to this question?
    How can clients in litigation protect or obtain sensitive data from online platforms and from holders of such? 
    How safe is your client’s Ashley Madison profile? 
    And how safe are the details of your client’s bank account in Panama which were used to set up their Ashley Madison account?

  2. ‘Words Without Borders: Defamation and the Internet’
    What constitutes publication on the internet? 
    Do special rules apply for Google, Wikipedia and Facebook, or is Webb v Bloch still good law? 
    The internet is now more often than not the new defamation battlefield rather than print and broadcast media. 
    How can convenors of online platforms or blogs, social media account holders or users and social media providers be held to account for content published online which they ultimately are able to control?

Key Dates:

  • Submission deadline is Thursday 19 July 2018, submit your application to
  • Speaking Competition on Thursday 26 July 2018

Submissions must address the nominated topic and explain why the entrant should present on the topic, comprise of no more than 3 A4 pages in Times New Roman, size 12 font and 1.5 line spacing. Please submit in electronic form as a word document. 
Finalists will be invited to compete at a function attended by fellow barristers and young solicitors to be followed by a drinks function. 

The competition is an excellent way for the junior commercial bar to promote itself amongst its solicitor peers.

* Competition is open to barristers who are members of CommBar and as at 1 January 2018, are less than 5 years call to the Victorian Bar, and less than 10 years since admission as a legal practitioner in an Australian state or territory. 

Expressions of Interest - Firearms Appeals Committee

Expressions of Interest are sought from members to be nominated by the Bar to the Victorian Government for appointment to the Firearms Appeals Committee.  Click here for the Position Description.

The Firearms Appeals Committee (the Committee) is an independent statutory appeals body established under section 154(1) of the Firearms Act 1996 (Vic).  The function of the Committee is to review firearm licensing decisions of the Chief Commissioner of Victoria Police in the circumstances in which a right to review is given to any person by or under the Act.

The Committee is to consist of 15 persons appointed by the Governor-in-Council.  Of the persons appointed to the Committee, there are to be five legal members, five ministerial members and five members form the prescribed shooting organisations.

There is currently more than one vacancy within the legal members.  The Victorian Government has requested the Bar nominate three members for consideration by the Governor In Council. Expressions of interest will be considered in accordance with the Victorian Bar’s external appointments protocol. 

Expressions of Interest will be considered by the Executive, and a recommendation of the requisite three nominations will be provided to the Bar Council for approval at its next meeting on 26 July 2018.

Please send your Expression of Interest by email to  In the email, please set out

* your expertise that is relevant to the general attributes of the role (which are set out in the position description

* your previous contribution to or involvement with the Committee

* in the case of members seeking reappointment, the length of time already served

Please attach your CV, as the Minister has requested that the Bar provide a CV for each of the Bar's nominees.

The closing date for Expressions of Interest is Wednesday 18 July 2018.  

Call for Expressions of Interest – Victorian Legal Admissions Committee

The Victorian Bar has been invited to nominate two representatives to the Victorian Legal Admissions Committee.  The Committee's role is to consider suitability matters and determine whether applicants are fit and proper to be admitted for admission to the Supreme Court. 

The Bar is calling for Expressions of Interest from members who may wish to participate as our representative on the Committee. The Bar’s protocol for nomination and appointment of Vic Bar members to external bodies can be viewed here. The Expression of Interest should identify any relevant areas of experience or expertise.  

The appointments are for a term of 3 years from July 2018 (although the term for these two nominees would not commence until late August 2018).

Please direct any enquiries or Expressions of Interest to Liz Ingham at the Victorian Bar office:, ph 9225 6947. 

The closing date for Expressions of Interest is Thursday 9 August 2018.

Victorian Bar Open Day 2018

Date & Time: Friday 17 August 2018, 10am – 1pm     
Venue: Level 1, Owen Dixon Chambers East, 205 William St Melbourne

Are you considering a career as a barrister?

Come along to the Victorian Bar’s Inaugural Open Day – a free event for tertiary students.

Find out how you can apply to pursue this challenging and rewarding legal career. 

Hear from the barristers about their experiences including high profile cases. 

Enjoy a networking morning tea where you can speak to barristers one on one.

Register now at:

Intensive Cross Examination Workshop

The Victorian Bar is pleased to present an Intensive Cross Examination Workshop.

Cross examination is one of the most important skills of any trial barrister in both criminal and civil jurisdictions. Development of cross examination skills takes time and experience. It is a never-ending learning process.   Participants will benefit from objective input by experienced cross examiners and senior advocacy instructors.

Who Should Attend

Counsel who have some cross examination experience and wish further to develop their cross examination skills and techniques in criminal and civil cases in this intensive learning environment.


This workshop is offered in two afternoon sessions, one conceptual and one practical performance session. Each participant will have an opportunity to perform an allocated cross examination task and receive feedback.

Speakers: Professor The Hon George Hampel AM QC; Diana Price

Dates and Times

Introduction Session: Thursday 19 July 2018, 5.00pm – 7.00pm

Performance & review session: Workshop: Thursday 26 July 2018, 5.00pm – 7.30pm

Where: Neil Forsyth Room, Level 1, Owen Dixon Chambers East205 William Street Melbourne VIC 3000


Numbers in this workshop are strictly limited.  Register early to avoid disappointment.

4.5 CPD points in the area of Barristers Skills

Price:  $195.00

EOFY Crim Law Drinks - Supporting Beyond Blue

Victorian Bar Member CPD Events
Vicbar Life
Law and religious freedom

Date & Time: Wednesday 25 July 2018, 6pm - 7:30pm 

A free event to celebrate the release of Associate Professor Luke Beck's new book Religious Freedom and the Australian Constitution: Origins and Future (Routledge, 2018).

Click here for more information and to register. 

Click here to download the book flyer with discount code. 


The Essoign - A Night at the Opera

Opera comes to the Essoign on Friday 17 August.

The Melba Opera Trust’s latest production takes you on a recital journey of evincing beauty and passion from all corners of the globe.

The sublime loveliness of Mozart, the volatile love of Carmen and the elegance of the French opera Hamlet and a swirl through the romance of Broadway with Bolcom.

This will be an evening to delight, captivate and enthralling in equal measure. Featuring some of Australia’s finest young operatic voices, this is an event not to be missed.  

Book now at

Click here to download the event flyer.

Member Benefits Australia - July exclusive member offers

Don't miss these July exclusive member deals from Audi, Volvo, David Jones and more!

Practice & Profession News
Urgent: Request for legal volunteers for Fitzroy Legal Service

Fitzroy Legal Service is one of Australia’s oldest community legal centres and relies on the volunteer assistance of numerous lawyers and law students to run its free legal advice night service.

The Fitzroy Legal Service Night Service provides advice to clients from mainly disadvantaged and marginalised backgrounds from all over Melbourne from Monday to Friday.

We are the only community legal centre that assists clients five nights per week.

One of the greatest challenges for our service is obtaining enough lawyers to assist on a weekly or fortnightly basis at the night service. 

Contact Julie Fletcher for more information:
Phone: (03) 9411 1304

Profession CPD & Events
Melbourne Law School Events - Obligations IX Conference

Date: 17 - 20 July 2018
Venue: Melbourne Law School

From 17 - 20 July 2018, Melbourne Law School will host the 9th biennial Obligations Conference in conjunction with the Faculty of Law at the University of Oxford. The biennial Obligations Conferences bring together scholars and practitioners from throughout the common law world to discuss current issues in contract law, the law of torts, equity, and unjust enrichment. The Obligations Conference is the leading international forum for discussion of these subject areas. Approximately 90 presentations will be made over the three days of the conference, including keynote presentations by Professor Andrew Burrows (Oxford), the Hon Justice James Edelman (High Court of Australia), the Hon Justice Michelle Gordon (High Court of Australia), Professor Birke Häcker (Oxford), the Hon Justice Mark Leeming (NSW Court of Appeal), Professor Matthew Harding (Melbourne), and Professor Liam Murphy (NYU).

For further information and to register please visit our website:

ASEAN Law Conference 2018 in Singapore

Date: 25 – 28 July 2018

The ASEAN Law Association is pleased to invite you to attend the 13th ASEAN Law Association General Assembly in Singapore, and The ASEAN Law Conference which will be held in conjunction with the 13th ALA General Assembly, from 25 – 28 July 2018.

The theme of The ASEAN Law Conference is "The Power of ONE: Unlocking Opportunities in ASEAN through Law". ALA’s vision for the Conference is to create and curate a world-class legal conference focused on thought-leadership issues pertaining to ASEAN, specifically regarding cross-border commercial and legal opportunities and challenges in the ASEAN Economic Community (“AEC”). In line with this vision, luminaries from ASEAN Member States and beyond have been invited to speak at the Conference on topics including the opportunities and challenges in the AEC, free trade agreements and bilateral investment agreements in ASEAN, competition law, disruptive technologies and financial integration. More than 500 legal professionals hailing from the ASEAN Member States and beyond are expected to attend the Conference.

Click here for more information and to register. 

The Commercial Law Association of Australia - 30th anniversary Journal of Contract Law conference

Date: 27 July, 2018
Venue: The Gallery Room, Mitchell Wing, NSW State Library

The Hon Justice Gleeson, Justice Andrew Phang, Associate Professor Goh Yihan, Assistant Professor Eliza Mik, Professor Elisabeth Peden, Professor Woody Hunter, Professor Greg Tolhurst, Associate Professor Katy Barnett, Associate Professor Wayne Courtney, Emeritus Professor John Carter

Click here for more information and to register. 

La Trobe Law School Seminar - Australian Superannuation: What went wrong?

Date & Time: 11 am to 12 noon on Wednesday 1 August 2018
Venue: La Trobe University, Bundoora Campus, Social Sciences Building, Level 2, room SS 232 (Moot Court)
Speaker: Dr Nicholas Morris

Further details and registration:

e-Trials: A New Shift In Personal Injury Litigation

Date: Thursday 2 August 2018, 5:30-7:00pm  
Citadines on Bourke Melbourne, 131-135 Bourke Street Melbourne VIC 3000

It is clear that e-trials are a matter of ‘when’, rather than ‘if’, for personal injury practitioners. It is important that we prepare ourselves for the change and this event is the perfect opportunity to learn more about e-trials and demystify the process.

Our panel features Her Honour Judge Tsalamandris of the County Court, who presided over the County Court’s first personal injury e-trial. Formerly a solicitor, Judge Tsalamandris brings a wealth of practical experience to the bench and is uniquely positioned to critique the use of e-trials for personal injury matters.

The Victorian Solicitor for Public Prosecutions, John Cain, will also be on the panel. The Office of Public Prosecutions has been running e-trials, and John has first-hand experience of the benefits, challenges and opportunities that they present. Like personal injury matters, criminal proceedings are heard by juries and involve complex evidentiary issues, so John’s experience is directly relevant to personal injury practitioners.

Our final panellist, Daniel Nguyen, a Lennon’s List barrister and member of the Victorian Bar Council, worked on the 2009 Black Saturday bushfire e-trials proceedings. He also wrote an article published in the ALA Precedent Journal, March/April 2017 Edition, 'The Advent of E-Litigation: The Paperless Trial'.

It is rare that we have such qualified and experienced panellists, making this is an event not to be missed.

Click here for more information and to register. 

NPLA/AILA seminar: Safety Defects, Burn Injuries and Product Recall Conundrums

Date & Time: Tuesday 7 August 2018, 5:15 - 6:30pm

  • Safety Defects, Burn Injuries and Product Recall Conundrums for Suppliers of Consumer Products
  • Effective Legal and Insurance Risk Management
  • Who Pays When Things Go Wrong and Why

The expert panel will be chaired by Alexis Taylor, Lawyer of Lander & Rogers, and feature:

  • Frances Williams, Partner of Corrs Chambers Westgarth, Brisbane
  • Michael Thompson QC of The Victorian Bar
  • Daniel Tribuzio, Placement Services Director of Willis Towers Watson

What you will learn

  • Practical tips for manufacturers/suppliers to limit their exposure, including compliance with Industry Codes of Practice and applicable standards
  • Legal risk management to minimise liability exposure to products having a safety defect
  • Underwriting and claims management initiatives to better protect an insured’s coverage against defective products which cause personal injury, loss and damage
  • ‘Best practice’ adopted by insurance risk managers to reduce the potential liability risks for manufacturers/suppliers arising from defective products

Download the event flyer for more information and to register. 

La Trobe Law School / International Legal Studies Research Group Seminar - Righting Inequality?: Human Right Responses to Economic Inequality in the United Nations

Date & Time: 12 noon to 1 pm on Wednesday 8 August 2018
Venue: La Trobe University, Bundoora Campus, Social Sciences Building, Level 2, room SS 232 (Moot Court)
Speaker: Dr Julia Dehm

Further details and registration:

Fighting the Death Penalty: Making a difference in the long term

Date & Time: Thursday 9 August, 5.30pm for 6pm – 7pm (followed by refreshments)
Venue: Monash Law Chambers, 555 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne

A conversation between Julian McMahon SC and Richard Bourke, Director, Louisiana Capital Assistance Centre

Join us for a rare chance to see one of America’s leading experts being put on the stand to discuss his challenging work. Having worked at LCAC since 2002, Richard Bourke has been on the front line of anti-death penalty case work in the southern states of the USA. Richard will be asked to shed light on the key difficulties his clients face, and on differences between death penalty cases in the USA and Asia. He will reflect on the strategies and debates being played out in his work and nationally, to bring about abolition.

Click here to download the event flyer for more information and to register. 

CIArb Australia Business Lunch - RACV Club

Date & Time: Friday, 10 August 2018, 12pm - 2pm
Venue: Pavilion Room RACV City Club, Level 2, 501 Bourke Street, Melbourne
Cost: $70 for members and non-members
RSVP: By no later than Friday, 3 August 2018

You are invited to attend the 2018 CIArb Australia Business Lunch featuring Guest Speaker, Alan Oxley. Proudly sponsored by Vic Bar, CommBar and the Asian Australian Lawyers Association, the lunch will be at the RACV Club, Melbourne, and will be attended by distinguished guests including The Hon Martin Pakula, Attorney General of Victoria, members of the judiciary, institutes  and commercial enterprises.

About Alan Oxley

Alan Oxley was a career diplomat with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade with postings at the United Nations in New York and Geneva. He served as Australia’s Ambassador to the GATT and Chairman of the GATT Contracting Parties, the predecessor to the World Trade Organization. One of the world’s leading experts on globalisation and international trade, Ambassador Oxley is Managing Director of ITS Global. He will speak on Opportunities for International Arbitration in the Asia Pacific.

Click here for more information and to register. 

The International Law Association Biennial Conference Sydney

The International Law Association conference is a major international legal event.  This year it is to be held in Sydney from August 19 to August 24, 2018. 

The current conference schedule and registration links are at

With over 200 speakers and numerous panel sessions on topics of private and public international law, maritime law, and international trade law, this is an event not to be missed. Confirmed speakers include the Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia and Lord Mance JSC of the United Kingdom Supreme Court. 

2018 International Criminal Law Congress

The International Criminal Law Congress is being held in the beautiful Byron Bay between 3 and 7 October 2018.  The conference is well regarded as a premier criminal law conference, boasting some very impressive speakers.  It is a fantastic opportunity to meet other criminal law solicitors and barristers from all over Australia and discuss current issues in criminal law.

Early bird tickets are now available by clicking here.

Social highlights include the welcome drinks at Elements on Byron, the Lawyers Long Lunch on Friday and Congress Dinner on Saturday not to be missed for their networking and conviviality. 

ABA Conference – ‘super special’ early bird registration for juniors

Date: 15-17 November 2018

Registration is now open for the Australian Bar Association Conference which is being held at the International Convention Centre in Sydney from 15-17 November 2018.  If you are under 7 years at the bar, they are offering a ‘super special junior early registration’ for the first 50 juniors that register. Total cost for two day registration is $1,250.  Early bird registrations close on 13 July 2018. There is also a discount available for the junior bar who register with in-house counsel.  Further details in the notice below.

Upcoming Family Law conferences

Havana Cuba

There will be a family law conference held in Havana Cuba from 7 to 12 April 2019. The conference will take place at the Grand Hotel Kempinski, it will include  papers from various barristers, solicitors and others who deal with family law. There will be time to see the city and partake in cultural activities”

Click here to download the conference flyer.  

Arctic Conference

 Following on from our successful conference in Antarctica in January 2017 there will be a further family Law conference in the Arctic in July 2020. There will be time on board the new ship, the Greg Mortimer, to hold a conference and also partake in the activities on and off the ship.”

Click here to download the conference flyer.  

Bali Conference

The 9th annual Family Law conference in Bali is to be held from 8th to 11th  June at the Oberoi Hotel. This conference will include a session on negotiation which may be of interest to those who do not practice in family law, and attendees at this conference will be from the Northern Territory, New South Wales and Victoria.

Click here to download the conference flyer.  

Jam Boutique Conferences: Family Law Conference - 9 -12 June 2019

Join us in sunny Malta for a 3 day conference – registration fee includes:

  • Registration and Welcome evening
  • 3 night’s accommodation at the Palace Hotel, Sliema Malta (5 star)
  • Daily breakfast, morning tea & lunch
  • 8 professional development sessions
  • Australian and Maltese presenters

Flights not included (but lots of early bird specials about for 2019)

Registration fee

$2,000 conference attendee

$350 non-attendee (sharing room with attendee)


Email one of us and we will issue you with tax invoice $500 (per conference attendee) non-refundable deposit is payable with your book and the final payment due 1 April 2019.   

Marlene Ebejer: 0411 772 064

John Spender: 0409 147 646

Angela de Mel: 0411 611 171               

Careers & Opportunities
Appointments to the Planning and Environment List of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal

Expressions of Interest

Non-sessional and sessional Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) members are appointed for a period of seven years by the Governor in Council on the recommendation of the Attorney-General.

The Attorney-General, the Hon Martin Pakula MP, seeks expressions of interest from suitably qualified planning lawyers and planning experts for appointment as ordinary members and senior members of the Planning and Environment List of VCAT. It is anticipated that sessional and non-sessional appointments to the List will be required within the next 12 months.

Applicants with significant expertise in planning, and in planning and environment law, are encouraged to apply.

Applicants eligible to apply for appointment as a senior member must have been admitted to legal practice in Victoria for not less than five years, or must have extensive knowledge or experience in planning. Persons who have been admitted to legal practice in Victoria, or who have special knowledge or experience in planning, are eligible to apply for appointment as an ordinary member.

Applicants should demonstrate a high level of integrity, sound judgment, interpersonal skills, the ability to conduct hearings, and a capacity to make fair decisions quickly. Applicants must also be aware of, and sensitive to, the diversity of backgrounds and life experiences of VCAT users, and the need to communicate effectively and courteously with all users. A commitment to the use of technology and participation in ongoing professional education will be viewed favourably. Excellent communication skills are essential, and skills in mediation are also valuable.

All expressions of interest are treated confidentially and may be drawn upon on an ongoing basis as vacancies arise.

How to apply

Expressions of interest should be submitted via the Get on Board website ( – click on ‘vacancies’), and should include a resume and a completed ‘VCAT Expression of Interest’ form.

Previous applicants who have already lodged an expression of interest via the Get on Board website will be considered, but should feel free to submit a new expression of interest if desired.

All expressions of interest must be received no later than midnight on Sunday 29 July 2018.

Call for submissions - ILA Reporter

The ILA Reporter (  is the official blog of the International Law Association (Australian Branch). The ILA was founded in Brussels in 1873 and has consultative status with a number of the United Nations' specialised agencies. The ILA Reporter publishes analysis, commentary and discussion on issues in public and private international law which have bearing on Australia and the wider region.

The ILA Reporter is currently seeking submissions, on a rolling basis, from legal practitioners, academics and students. This is an excellent opportunity to be published by a well-respected non-government organisation with a wide readership.

The ILA Reporter accepts short articles, book reviews, case analysis, and recounts of recent events in the field of international law. Submissions should be between 400 and 2000 words and must have a connection with Australia.  A style guide for submissions is available here:

Please contact Esther Pearson or Evan Ritli at with any queries, proposals or completed submissions.

Mentors sought for Monash students

The Monash Cultural and Lingual Appreciation Network, a program aligned with the Monash Law School Ambassador Program, is seeking barristers to mentor law students, particularly those who may face cultural or linguistic barriers in entering the profession. The mentoring program will run from August 2018 to March 2019, with the primary aim of the program being to foster open and positive relationships between law students from culturally diverse backgrounds and legal professionals.

Mentoring can take a number of forms including court shadowing and meeting over coffee, at the discretion of mentors. We are seeking barristers of all cultural backgrounds and seniority as potential mentors for our program.

Click here to view the flyer for more information and if you are available to help out, please contact:

Funding grants for women’s leadership development

Women & Leadership Australia (WLA) is administering a national initiative to support the development of female leaders across Australia’s legal sector.

The initiative is providing women working in the sector with grants to enable participation in a range of leadership development programs.

The leadership development programs are part-time and delivered nationally via WLA’s blended learning model. Scholarship funding is strictly limited and will be awarded based on a set of selection criteria being met.

Expressions of Interest
Find out more and register your interest by completing the Expression of Interest form here prior to September 7, 2018:

The Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Competence Course

The Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service (VALS) in conjunction with Centre for Cultural Competence Australia have developed a cultural competency course titled “Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Competence Course”. The course is mapped to three units of core competency and on completion participants will receive a Certificate of Completion from the Centre for Cultural Competence Australia. Participants will also receive a resource pack for their ongoing learning and reference, this will include course notes made during the course, personalised action plan, together with a number of fact sheets and additional resources.

This course has been developed for Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians and for people living and working anywhere within Australia. Whether you are delivering services specifically to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, or someone working with the general public or you just want to know more about the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people you live with, this course is for you.

It has been developed as a first step in a training pathway and as a pre-cursor to face-to-face, local and role specific cultural training. The course is designed to develop capabilities and build cultural competence whatever your level of knowledge in Aboriginal cultural education.

The cost is $192.50 per person.

We would encourage you to consider undertaking the course in order to develop your ability to work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in and out of the justice system, for further details please access

CIArb Asia Pacific Diploma in International Commercial Arbitration

Date: 28 July - 5 August 2018

Following the success in Singapore in 2016 and Hong Kong in 2017 this pre-eminent tertiary course offers a prestigious globally recognised qualification and is aimed at meeting the  increasing demands for

accredited arbitrators and arbitration practitioners to resolve cross border disputes in the Asia Pacific and beyond.

The course fee includes entry to not only the course but high-end networking/social events including the course dinner which will have The Hon Christian Porter, Attorney General of Australia as the guest speaker.

To register and gain further information, you can visit  but the following snapshot may assist. 

Entry Requirements are as follows:

  • Practising lawyers and other professionals who are familiar with legal reasoning and concepts and are involved in arbitration (domestic or international) and who wish to increase their knowledge and understanding of international commercial arbitration.
  • Associates or Members of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators who have experience of domestic arbitration practice and wish to extend their knowledge to include international arbitration procedures.
  • 3 August 2018: Course  Dinner
     The Western Australia Club
    Level 11/12 St Georges Terrace, Perth WA 6000
    Guest Speaker:  The Hon Christian Porter, Attorney General of Australia
  • Official Accommodation Provider

Intercontinental City Centre Perth

LCA Business Law Section - Scholarships

Baxt Prize

The Baxt Prize honours the contribution of Professor Robert (‘Bob’) Baxt AO to business law in Australia. The 2018 Baxt Prize will be awarded for a research paper of outstanding quality dealing with any aspect of penalties in corporate and commercial regulation. The value of the Baxt Prize is $7500.00.

Click here to view the prize flyer.

Click here to download the application form. 

Scholarship entries close at 5pm, 30 August 2018 AEST.

Forsyth Pose Scholarship

The Forsyth/Pose Scholarship is offered by the Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia (BLS) for papers on a topic in the field of taxation law. It was offered for the first time in 2013 to commemorate leading taxation law practitioners Neil Forsyth QC and Kevin Pose. Both were long-standing members of the BLS specialist Taxation Committee.

Click here to view the scholarship flyer.

Click here to download the application form. 

Scholarship entries close at 5pm, 30 August 2018 AEST.

Gaire Blunt Scholarship

The Gaire Blunt Scholarship is offered by the Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia (BLS) for papers on a topic in the field of competition law. First awarded in 2008, it commemorates Gaire Blunt, a leading competition law practitioner and a partner at Allen Allen & Hemsley (now Allens) from 1970 to 2005.

Click here to view the scholarship flyer.

Click here to download the application form. 

Scholarship entries close at 5pm, 30 August 2018 AEST.

Santow Scholarship

The Santow Scholarship is offered by the Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia (BLS) for papers on a topic in the field of corporations law. Offered for the first time in 2014, it commemorates the Hon Kim Santow AO, a former Justice of the Supreme Court of New South Wales and prior to that a leading corporations law practitioner at Freehills.

Click here to view the scholarship flyer.

Click here to download the application form. 

Scholarship entries close at 5pm, 30 August 2018 AEST.

Australian Academy of Law - Notice of Annual Essay Prize 2018

The Australian Academy of Law is pleased to announce the offering of its Annual Essay Prize for 2018.

The Prize is open to anyone, wherever resident, who is studying or has studied legal subjects at a tertiary level, or who is working or has worked in a law based occupation. There is no limit by reference to the age or seniority or experience of, or position held by, a person who may submit an entry. Accordingly, judicial officers, legal practitioners, legal academics and law students are all eligible to submit an essay.

The amount of the Prize is $10,000.

The essay topic for the Prize in 2018 is as follows:

“Rights and freedoms under the Australian Constitution: what are they and do they meet the needs of contemporary Australian society?”

The deadline for the submission of an essay is 31 August 2018 and persons intending to submit an essay must notify the Academy of that intention in writing via the Academy’s website to be received by 30 June 2018. Both of these time limits are strictly observed, as the Rules Governing the Annual Essay Prize make clear.

Those Rules can be accessed on the Academy’s website:

Refer to the Academy’s website also for further information about notification of intention to enter and about the actual submission of an entry.

LCIL - A five-day, high-level introduction to international investment law and arbitration

Date: Monday 17 - Friday 21 September 2018
Fees: £4,500, £3,500 (for registrations by 15 June 2018) 

Investment arbitration raises challenges distinct from those raised in other forms international dispute settlement, including complex questions of how to value assets and how to develop and position an arbitration practice in a highly competitive arbitration market. At the end of the five days, participants will be equipped with a unique background in the substantive, procedural and strategic aspects of bringing or defending an investment arbitration.

This five-day programme provides a high-level introduction to international investment law in the context of public international law and practice focusing on recent developments. It offers the opportunity to learn from Cambridge law and business school academics, as well as leading practitioners drawn from major law firms and barristers’ chambers. It is designed both for junior practitioners who are developing a practice in international investment law and for more senior lawyers who wish to re-orient themselves to investment arbitration. Participants will receive a certificate of participation on successful completion of the course.

Click here to download the course flyer. 

Deadline for the next issue:5pm, 19th July 2018