In Brief Issue #882


It was a week of appointments and welcomes for members of our Bar.  On behalf of all members, I extend to each of them my congratulations and wish them every personal and professional satisfaction in their new roles.

His Honour Judge Ginnane appointed to the County Court

On Wednesday, the Governor in Council appointed His Honour Magistrate Philip Ginnane a Judge of the County Court of Victoria.

The welcome ceremony was held this morning, so there was only a limited time after the announcement of the appointment for members to spot the notice in the lifts or on our website in order to attend the ceremony.

I thank Senior Vice-President Wendy Harris QC for representing the Bar at the welcome.  Wendy’s speech can be read here.

Welcome for Magistrate Nahrain Warda

On Wednesday, the profession extended a ceremonial welcome to Magistrate Nahrain Warda.  Her Honour was appointed a magistrate on 31 July and was sworn in privately by Chief Justice Ferguson on 6 August 2018.  My speech on behalf of the Bar can be read here.

Paul Glass appointed to the Family Court of Western Australia

Paul Glass has been appointed a magistrate of the Family Court of Western Australia, effective 1 October 2018. He will relocate to Perth to take up the position.

Paul came to the Bar in 2011 and practised in family law after previously working as a Senior Family Lawyer at Victoria Legal Aid. He was also a part-time member of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

Stephen Ballek, Jacqueline Billings, Letizia Torres and Randall Kune appointed as Magistrates

Congratulations also go to current and former Victorian Bar members Stephen Ballek, Letizia Torres and Randall Kune, who were appointed as Magistrates earlier this week, together with solicitor Jacqui Billings.  Further details are available on our website.

Transcript available for the Farewell to Justice North

We were unable to publish the farewell speeches for Justice North that were given by Tony Neal QC and Herman Borenstein QC.  The Federal Court has published the transcript for the farewell that was extended to Justice North last week on its website. All of the speeches are worth reading, but I highlight in particular those by Tony Neal QC and Herman Borenstein QC, who represented the Bar. 

Serious privacy breach

Last Friday, I called for an investigation into a serious breach of the privacy of a member of the Victorian Bar, after the personal financial and medical details of one of our members was tabled in State Parliament and uploaded to the internet. I also requested an explanation as to how it occurred and an assurance that that steps have been taken to prevent it from happening in the future.

The breach occurred when the State government tabled 80,000 documents in Parliament relating to a Phillip Island rezoning dispute, which were then uploaded to the Parliament of Victoria website for about three days, before being taken down on the orders of the Speaker.

Hong Kong International Commercial Law Conference

I hope to have the opportunity of seeing many of you next week at the VicBar / CommBar International Commercial Law Conference in Hong Kong.  The program and invited guests are very impressive and the venue looks magnificent. 

Many senior Victorian Bar staff have been dedicating a great deal of time to the project and a number will be managing the event in person next week.  Please take this into account if there are any delays in response times from VicBar staff next week.

A busy week

Behind the scenes this week, among other matters, Wendy Harris QC, Sarah Fregon and I met with the Chief Justice; I attended a Diversity and Inclusion Working Group meeting; the Bar Council met on Thursday evening; and further steps were taken towards engaging the Bar’s next CEO.

At the Bar Council meeting on Thursday evening, councillors were (among other matters) given an early look at the results of the health and wellbeing survey that ‘took the pulse’ of the Victorian Bar earlier this year. The survey results will be finalised in the next few weeks by the Quality of Working Life research group at the University of Portsmouth, before being released to all members.

Vicbar News & Events
HK 2018 ICLC

Click here to view the full list of conference speakers. 

Keynote speakers

The keynote speakers will be:

  • The Honourable Teresa Cheng GBS SC JP, Secretary for Justice, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
  • 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
  • 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 Honourable Justice Riordan, Principal Judge, Supreme Court of Victoria

Conference Program

This year's ICLC conference program includes the following sessions:

21 September, 2018
Session 1:  The Rise of the International Commercial Court
Session 2:  After the Apocalypse: Re-regulation of the Banking and Financial Services Industries
Session 3:  Arbitration on the One Belt, One Road: Enforcement of foreign arbitral awards in China
Session 4:  International Arbitration in a Tri-Polar World
22, September, 2018
Breakfast:  The Big Bite: A Tech-Breakfast
Session 5:  Words Without Borders: Defamation and the Internet
Session 6:  Modern Case-Management of Commercial Disputes
Session 7:  Is Privacy Dead? Use and Misuse of Sensitive Data
Session 8:  The Bottom Line: The Value to Clients and Tribunals of the Independent Bar

Click here to view the full conference program and details.

Gala Dinner

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.

HK2018 ICLC Sponsors


Platinum Sponsor

Gold Sponsors

Bronze Sponsor


Call for Expressions of Interest - Appointment of Special Counsel under the Terrorism (Community Protection) Act

The Terrorism (Community Protection) Act has recently been amended to create a new scheme for the use and protection of criminal intelligence in applications under that Act. As part of the new scheme the Supreme Court is empowered to appoint a special counsel to represent the interests of the respondent in a hearing involving protected intelligence.

The Victorian Bar has been invited to identify counsel, preferably with current security clearance, who may be suitable candidates for the panel. The current understanding is that Negative Vetting 2 will be required. If there are suitable counsel who do not currently have security clearance, security clearance can be organised.

While it is expected that they will be called on only rarely, a panel of counsel (three people) is being established.

Counsel will need to have expertise with the Terrorism Act in order to fulfil the role.

The panel will be maintained by the Criminal Law Governance & Resources team in DJR. It is not proposed that counsel will be paid any retainer, as these matters will rarely arise. It will operate on a fee for service model.

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 the relevant criteria, any areas of experience or expertise. 

Please direct any enquiries or Expressions of Interest to Denise Bennett at

The closing date for Expressions of Interest is Thursday 27 September 2018.

Victorian Bar News – call for contributions

Victorian Bar News is a twice yearly magazine published by the Victorian Bar for its members. The Editors of Bar News are now calling for contributions for the December Issue. We are happy to receive draft content in written form, but general expressions of interest are also welcome.

Topics of particular interest include:

  • Who we are -  if you have climbed Everest (or a much smaller mountain), make great wine, cook good food, play a little known sport, have an obscure interest or hobby, are a polymath who has changed careers, or you are a Renaissance man or woman, we want to hear from you.
  • Market disruption - The Bar is not immune from market forces. Stories about what is causing change within our practices, positive and negative, are important to us.
  • Barristers who blog - If you blog for personal or professional reasons, let us know who you are, and the name of your blog or website.

Now is also the time to become involved in Bar News for members with a background in editing, journalism, photography, illustration and/or a passion for story-telling. 

In the meantime, please contact the Editors, Natalie Hickey, Justin Wheelahan and Annette Charak at or via their personal contact details.

Victorian Bar Member CPD Events

Upcoming CPD events:

You must be a member of the Victorian Bar and logged into the VicBar website to view the following events. 

Vicbar Life
Lyrical Luchtimes at the Law Library

Date: Thursday 20 September at 1.15pm

BottledSnail's next Lyrical Lunchtimes concert is on Thursday 20 September at 1.15pm and will feature performances on oboe and piano by Naomi Kwong and classical and contemporary vocal music by Carolyn Baker and Alice McNab accompanied by Kylie Weston-Scheuber. Come along to the Law Library at 210 William Street and enjoy 45 minutes of beautiful classical music. Entry is free and there is no need to book. Contact Kylie Weston-Scheuber on for more details.

Click here to download the flyer. 

Flight - Sponsored by the Barristers Consortium

Date: Friday 5 - Sunday 21 October

Two orphaned brothers embark on a desperate road trip across Europe in search of a place to call home. With their tiny inheritance stitched into their clothes, they brave hazardous sea crossings and bustling train stations, the menace of strangers and the constant threat of violence, in a heart-wrenching story of terror, hope and survival.

Vox Motus' adaptation of Caroline Brother's novel Hinterland is a theatrical realisation unlike any you've witnessed: take a seat in a private booth as your window opens to reveal the tiny figures who will enact this tale. This is your gateway into a diorama that unfolds as a sequence of exquisitely fashioned frames passing by, detailing this continent-crossing journey in crystalline detail.

Like a graphic novel in three dimensions or live theatre snap-frozen into discrete moments, Flight is both a gripping tale of little boys lost and an astonishing feat of artistic imagination.

By turns unsettling and uplifting, its miniature storytelling is a distillation of the largest and most urgent of contemporary stories facing us today.

Click here to buy tickets and for more information.   

The Essoign - Cedar Fox Gin talk & tasting

Date:  Thursday 11 October from 5:00pm


Hockey Players Required - VicBar vs LIV

Date: Thursday 1 November 2018, 7.00pm
Venue: Hawthorn Hockey Centre

Looking for players of any age and ability for the annual Hockey match between VicBar and Law Institute Victoria.

Please email Trish with your availability:

Art Exhibition - "Women at Work" - Final week

Studio 11, as it is now known,  located on level 11 of Owen Dixon Chambers East, is hosting its current Art Exhibition “Women at Work” by seven local artists comprising a body of 82 works. 

Friends, family, instructors and colleagues are most welcome to view the exhibition which runs from 16 July 2018 – 21 September 2018.

Studio 11 has hosted art exhibitions from 2015 in order to allow barristers and friends to access and enjoy art. The exhibitions change on a quarterly basis and feature works be established or emerging artists. Works are for sale, directly via the artist. The program is run on a voluntary basis. Catalogue sheets are available on level 11. You are encouraged to come along, visit the space and simply enjoy the works at your leisure.

The Essoign Members September wine offer

Don’t miss out on these exquisite boutique wines on offer now! These prices will not be repeated.

Download order form or email

Cheers from the Essoign team.

Member Benefits Australia - September exclusive member offers

Don't miss out on these exclusive member deals for September from Land Rover, Lexus, Sennheiser and more!

Member Benefits Australia - September exclusive member travel deals

MBA Travel Solutions - your full service member travel agency!

Click here to view MBA's travel deals of the month. 

Practice & Profession News
Survey: Bullying and Harassment in the Legal Profession

According to 2017 research by the International Bar Association, Legal Policy & Research Unit (IBA LPRU), one in two female lawyers in commercial practice have been bullied in connection with their employment. Almost one in three have been sexually harassed, while a similar percentage of their male counterparts have been bullied in the workplace. These findings, drawn from a survey of 6,000 lawyers globally, coincide with growing global awareness about the prevalence of misconduct at work. In the legal, media, entertainment and political sectors, to name just a few, the past 12 months have seen a steady flow of high-profile allegations of bullying and harassment. While such conduct is never acceptable in the workplace, it is particularly repugnant in an industry – such as the legal profession – based on integrity and high ethical standards.

Following on from the LPRU’s Women in Commercial Legal Practice Report, which outlined these and other challenges facing female lawyers, the LPRU has committed to undertaking a new survey focused on the nature and prevalence of bullying and harassment in the global legal profession. The purpose of this research is to provide an empirical basis for developing informed recommendations and effectively engaging with firms and practitioners. The survey is now live – please complete it and distribute it widely through your networks. More data means a more complete picture of bullying and harassment in the legal profession, which in turn means better analysis and greater prospects of achieving change.

Please complete the survey:

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
La Trobe Law School Seminar: Australian Superannuation: Fixing the Problems

Date & Time: Tuesday 18 September 2018, 12.30 pm-1.50 pm ​​
Venue: La Trobe University, City Campus, 360 Collins Street, Level 2, room 2.11 (Teaching room 2).
Speakers: Professor Nicholas Morris and Jack Hammond QC

Registration and further details:

La Trobe Law School Seminar - Venezuelan Supreme Court under Maduro’s Rule

Date: Wednesday 19 September 2018, 12noon - 1pm 
Venue: La Trobe University, Bundoora Campus, Social Sciences Building, Level 2, room SS232 (Moot Court)
Presenter: Dr Raul Sanchez Urribarri

Registration and further details:

America should follow Australia’s examples on gun laws: Is this even possible?

Date: Thursday 20 September 2018, 5.45pm arrival, 6pm – 7pm
Venue: RACV Club, 501 Bourke Street, Level 2, Bayside Room 4a & 4b

Following a number of highly publicised mass shootings in the United States in recent years, there has been increased focus by Americans on John Howard’s response to the Port Arthur massacre more than two decades ago. In February 2018, for example, representative Jim Hines, a Democrat from Connecticut said that ‘America should follow Australia’s examples on gun laws.’ The topic of this panel discussion considers the approaches by both countries in respect of gun regulation and the ongoing challenges that each country is faced with in respect of gun regulation. In particular, this panel will focus on what makes Australia and the US distinct both legally and culturally in the context of gun regulation.

Click here for more information and to register. 

The National Indigenous Legal Conference 2018

Date: 25-26 September 2018
Venue: Wesfarmers Lecture Theatre (WFLT) UWA Business School (441) - Ground Floor Room G91.

The School of Indigenous Studies in partnership with UWA Law School, Notre Dame Law School and the Aboriginal Legal Service of Western Australia, brings you the National Indigenous Legal Conference 2018.

 The School of Indigenous Studies at the University of Western Australia welcomes Indigenous lawyers, students, academics and teachers to attend and participate at the 13th National Indigenous Legal Conference held at the University of Western Australia on 25 to 26 September 2018.

Speakers include the Honourable Robert French AC, Professor Megan Davis, Professor Irene Watson, Adjunct Professor Dennis Eggington, Mr Jeremiah Riley, Mr David Saylor and the Master of Ceremonies is Mr Ashley Truscott.

The two-day conference - Sovereign Laws, Peoples and Voices - aims to bring a wide range of Indigenous lawyers, students, educators and policy makers from across the nation to discuss Indigenous rights claims of significant national and international prominence.

Click here for more information and to register. 

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. 

La Trobe Law School/Centre for Health Law and Society Seminar: ‘Death trespassed on my body’… and law too? Stillbirth grief, fetal legal personhood and the external and internal borders of bodily autonomy

Date & Time: 10 October 2018, 12.30pm-1.30pm (light lunch available from 12.15pm)
Venue: La Trobe University, Bundoora Campus, Social Science Building, Level 2, room SS232 (Moot Court)
Speaker: Hannah Robert

Registration and further details:

Mental Health Courts: What can we learn from the US experience?

Date: Thursday 11 October 2018
Venue: Monash University Law Chambers, 555 Lonsdale Street, Seminar Room 6
RSVP: Monday 8 October

Magistrate Felicity Zempilas from Western Australia’s mental health court, the START Court, will speak about the findings from her recent Churchill Fellowship which saw her travel to the United States and Canada in June and July 2018. She reflects on latest practice and policy developments in the United States mental health courts that will be relevant to those working in mental health courts and other problem-oriented courts, and those interested in therapeutic jurisprudence and responses to offenders with mental illness.

Click here to download the event flyer. 

6th International Arbitration Conference

Date: 17 October 2018 
Sofitel on Collins, Melbourne Australia 

Co-presented by the  Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia, the Australian Centre for International Commercial Arbitration  and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (Australia) the 6th Annual International Arbitration Conference: The Business of International Commercial Arbitration  is the pre-eminent event of the 2018 Australia Arbitration Week, which is being held for the first time in Melbourne. With the support of local and international arbitral bodies and firms, the conference features distinguished speakers from across Australia and around the world who will be discussing the emerging trends and hot topics in international commercial arbitration. The conference will be opened by Dr Michael Pryles AO PBM, who will deliver the keynote address: Australia’s Place In International Arbitration.

CIArb Australia Annual Dinner – 17 October 2018, No35 Restaurant, Sofitel on Collins, Melbourne Australia

Following the day’s proceedings, will be the CIArb Australia Annual Dinner, featuring guest speaker, Allan Myers AC QC, Chancellor of the University of Melbourne, leading international arbitrator and prominent businessman. Master of Ceremonies for the evening’s proceedings will be  Patrick Durkin, Melbourne Bureau Chief, Australian Financial Review. 

For further details about the program and how to register, please click here  

rise2018 - 2018 ABA & NSWBA National Conference

The Australian Bar Association and the NSW Bar Association are looking forward to co-hosting the 2018 National Conference on 15 - 17 November in Sydney. 

The preeminent legal conference of 2018 – rise2018 relevant/resilient/respected is a prestigious two-day conference that boasts an impressive speaker line-up which will highlight and profile the excellence of the Australian legal profession.

For all the details and to register please visit

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
Judges required for annual Michael Kirby Contract Law Moot

Victoria University has asked for the Bar’s assistance in judging their annual Michael Kirby Contract Law Moot. The moot will be held at the VU campus in Queen Street, Melbourne. Expressions of interest should be sent to David Thomson ( no later than 20 September 2018.

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. 

30th International human rights competition for lawyers

The Caen Memorial International human rights competition for lawyers is open to all lawyers registered with a bar, irrespective of their nationality, language or age, who are willing to inform the public of the profession’s commitment to defend the human rights. The competition is only open to the defence of individual cases. Lawyers agree to not compromise or prejudice the defended person. Human rights are binding on all and concern all defendants, whoever they may be, under the fundamental right of defence.

The closing date for submitting pleadings to the Memorial de Caen museum is Friday 9 November 2018.

The final of the competition will be held at the Memorial de Caen on 27 January 2019.

The Justice and Society Symposium

Date: 29 – 30 November
Venue: Cranlana House, Toorak
Cost: $3814 

Is Justice Possible?

Members of the Victorian Bar are warmly invited to attend this exclusive symposium to explore the conceptions of justice underpinning our society.

Open to up to 20 leading minds in the Justice Sector, participants will engage in moderated discussion looking at the pragmatic, aspirational, and actual aims of Justice in the social fabric. The clarification of the role of justice in society helps inform our role as practitioners of the Law – and sharpens our ethical and moral judgement of the decisions we must make in our position each day.

Over the course of the two days, we will discuss questions such as: Do we believe the rule of law to be good because it is just or is it just because we think it is good? To what degree is our understanding of justice determined by the laws under which we live? Are there certain universal requirements that any just law must full? Is it possible to have a just society without a base of guaranteed moral rights? If not, what are those guaranteed moral rights?

Visit or contact us on 03 9827 2660 to find out more.

Australian Bar Association Advanced Trial Advocacy Intensive

Date: 21 - 25 January 2019

Are you 5 years or more at the Bar, looking to refresh or to ‘ramp up’ your advocacy skills? Considering applying for silk? Looking to stimulate your advocacy?

If so, the Advanced Advocacy Course is for you. A 5 day live-in intensive course, where you run a trial, with each aspect of your conduct of the trial being analysed and reviewed. 

Many members of the Bar have had the benefit of the training provided by the Course, sometimes as a precursor to talking silk, or generally to increase their trial skills.  

The instructors comprise highly experienced instructors, including silks, judges and international trainers.

Click here to download the brochure for more details.

Contact Carolyn Sparke QC ( or x 8492) for more information.

Deadline for the next issue:5pm, 20th September 2018