Michael Whitten has practised in the law for over 25 years, gaining broad experience in various aspects of the profession. He commenced practice in 1986 in the Public Defenders Office (as it then was) in Brisbane. In 1998, he was appointed as clerk to Judge Kimmins of the Queensland District Court where he served for two years. He then worked at Blake Dawson Waldron in Brisbane in commercial litigation before first signing the Bar Roll in May 1990. Michael spent the next 5 years at the private Bar in Brisbane and Mackay appearing in courts and tribunals on a range of matters including, criminal law, personal injuries, family law and commercial disputes.
In 1996, after migrating to Melbourne, he spent a year at Kliger Partners in commercial litigation before signing the Victorian Bar Roll in 1997. Since then, he has practised predominantly in civil and commercial litigation. He has appeared in all courts and many tribunals in Victoria, particularly VCAT, as well as special leave applications before the High Court. Over the last 10 years or more, Michael has sought to specialise in all aspects of building and construction disputes.
Alternate dispute resolution is an important part of Michael's practice. He is a nationally accredited mediator and has served on the Victorian Bar's Alternate Dispute Resolution Committee. He has appeared at and conducted numerous mediations, expert determinations and other dispute resolution procedures in a wide range of commercial disputes.
Michael is a founding and continuing executive member of Melbourne TEC (Technology, Engineering and Construction) Chambers. MTECC comprises a group of construction law specialist barristers, arbitrators and mediators aimed at promoting and developing opportunities for its members in construction disputes both throughout Australia, South East Asia and the Middle East.
Michael co-authored the 4th edition of "Brooking on Building Contracts" and together with his co-authors, has been commissioned for the 5th edition, expected to be completed in late 2012. Michael has been recognised by Worldwide Who’s Who for Excellence in Commercial Law (2015), recommended in Doyle's Guide Leading Construction & Infrastructure Barristers - Victoria (2017) and included in the 10th Edition of The Best Lawyers in Australia for work in Construction/Infrastructure Law (2017).
Michael is a past member of the Victorian Bar's Alternate Dispute Resolution Committee.
Michael is a current member of:
Liability limited by a scheme approved under the Professional Standards Legislation.
Michael has appeared in a number of significant commercial cases both as a single junior counsel opposed to senior counsel, junior counsel being led by senior counsel and as senior junior counsel leading junior counsel, including:
Victorian Bar Committee memberships