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Australian Law

This tag is associated with 36 posts

Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus


The following editorial, among the most famous ever written, appeared in the New York Sun in 1897. Since it’s Christmas, etc… Also, it is a great piece of writing: We take pleasure in answering at once and thus prominently the communication below, expressing at the same time our great gratification that its faithful author is … Continue reading

Lack of Opportunities For Disabled People


Employers and recruiters unintentionally inflict a ‘glass ceiling’ on disabled Australians, largely due to a lack of infrastructure and consideration, and new figures show that disabled people are half as likely to be employed compared to the population in general. John Walsh, author of a new report, “Disability Expectations: Investing in a better life, a … Continue reading

WIPO Welcomes EU Ratification of Internet Treaties


Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization Francis Gurry has welcomed the ratification by the European Union of the WIPO Copyright Treaty and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty. The treaties establish the basic standards of protection for copyright and related rights in the digital environment. Mr Gurry said the EU’s ratification of the … Continue reading

Alcopops Dispute Fizzes Out In Federal Court


The Federal Government has been taking a variety of measures intended to reduce “binge drinking”. One of those measures has been to increase rates of duty and excise on “ready to drink” mixed drinks known as Alcopops. Many of you have been following the fate of measures intended to raise customs duty on imported products … Continue reading

Energy Market Legislation (2009)


The Minister for Resources and Energy, Martin Ferguson AM MP, has welcomed the release of exposure draft legislation to support the establishment of the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO). The creation of AEMO, which will require amendment to the National Electricity and Gas Laws and National Electricity and Gas Rules, will implement the decision of … Continue reading

Barack Obama Complete Inaugural Speech 2009 (NY Times)


My fellow citizens: I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation… (APPLAUSE) … as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition. Forty-four Americans … Continue reading

Public Works Committee Hearings $793 Million Defence Project


APH Media Release – 19th January 2009 The Parliamentary Public Works Committee will conduct hearings on $793 million worth of new facilities proposed by Defence for Lavarack Barracks, Townsville, RAAF Base Amberley, Brisbane , and six other locations to support the needs of Enhanced Land Force Stage 1. The project proposes to provide accommodation and … Continue reading

Another Trip And Fall Case Rejected


The Queensland Court of Appeal [McMurdo P, Fraser JA and Mackenzie AJA] has upheld the decision of the Supreme Court in another trip and fall case where the primary judge held that the unfortunate injury was not caused by the negligence of the respondent but rather the plaintiff’s own carelessness. ELLIS V UNITING CHURCH IN … Continue reading

Ten Major Developments In Commercial Litigation In 2008


Economic conditions, court decisions, and a new Federal Government all will generate changes during 2009.  The following are the top ten developments according to Clayton Utz Solicitors. 1. Economic downturn triggers a rise in litigation As the economy slowed in 2008, litigation departments became increasingly busy. Demand for litigation has traditionally been counter-cyclical. The conventional … Continue reading

State Of Mind And Waiver Of Privelege


Do you impliedly waive privilege in your legal advice by putting in issue your state of mind? Generally speaking, two distinct approaches emerged, a broad view and a narrower view, but recently the narrower view has prevailed. The NSW Court of Appeal recently signalled however that it might be prepared to take a broader view … Continue reading

Breach Of Confidence Claims And Awards Of Damages


Key Points Damages are now available for pure mental distress for breach of confidence claims, where the essence of the claim is that there has been a misuse of private information. This could have important consequences for the media in Australia. In this case, the Victorian Court of Appeal chose to adapt the existing action … Continue reading

Second Thoughts Do Not Justify Reinstatement


In Fitzsimmons and Comcare [2008] AATA 919, the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (Tribunal) rejected Mr Fitzsimmons’s application to reinstate his claim on the basis that it was ‘dismissed in error’ under section 42A(10) of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal Act 1975 (AAT Act). BACKGROUND Mr Fitzsimmons appealed a decision by Comcare that it was not liable to … Continue reading

Jurisdiction To Review An Out Of Time Claim


In Bain v Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Commission [2008] AATA 884, the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (Tribunal) was satisfied that it had jurisdiction to review decisions which the Commission had conceded could be reviewed out of time. BACKGROUND Mr Bain was injured during his Army Service in October 1969. Claims for compensation and other relevant records … Continue reading

Australian Soldier Killed In Afghanistan (January 2009)


Media Release By Prime Minister Kevin Rudd – Jan 5th 2009 I am deeply saddened to learn of the death of an Australian soldier in Afghanistan. This brave soldier, wearing the uniform of Australia, died in the field of duty wearing his nation’s uniform, and wearing it with pride. On behalf of the Government, I … Continue reading

Damages For A Risk Of Injury Where Damages Already Paid


In Muscat v Comcare [2008] AATA 872, the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) considered whether an employee was entitled to compensation under the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 (SRC Act) in circumstances where he had settled an action for damages against the Commonwealth in the Dust Diseases Tribunal of NSW (DDT). In making its decision, … Continue reading

Julia Gillard Guantanamo Statement


Australia, along with a number of other friends and allies of the United States, has been approached to consider resettling detainees from Guantanamo Bay. This is a request from the Bush administration, and follows President Bush’s statement that he would like to see Guantanamo closed. This is not a request from President Elect Obama. The … Continue reading

New Queensland Liquor Licence Types And Fees


From 1 January 2009 all liquor licences in Queensland will be re-categorised into the new streamlined licence types under the amended Liquor Act 1992 (Liquor Act). On 12 December 2008, the Government promulgated the amendments to the Liquor Regulation 2002, which sets out the new annual licence fee structure. The first instalment of annual licence … Continue reading

New Quality Measures For Australian Aged Care


Tough new measures come into effect on January 1 as part of the Rudd Labor Government’s push to improve the quality of care for the frail and aged in Australia’s 2,830 aged care facilities. They include new laws: * Allowing – in some cases – the verbal lodgment of complaints by residents, family or staff … Continue reading

New Australian Counter-terrorism Agreement With Bangladesh


Australia and Bangladesh have formally agreed to work together against terrorism in South Asia. The Secretary of the Home Affairs Ministry of Bangladesh, Mr Abdul Karim, together with Australia’s High Commissioner to Bangladesh, Mr Douglas Foskett, today signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation to Combat International Terrorism. The signing ceremony took place in Dhaka. … Continue reading

Comprehensive Response to National Security Legislation Reviews


Attorney-General Robert McClelland today tabled in Parliament the Rudd Government’s comprehensive response to outstanding reviews of national security legislation from the term of the former Government. At the same time, Mr McClelland tabled in Parliament the public report of the Inquiry by the Hon. John Clarke QC into the case of Dr Mohamed Haneef and … Continue reading

Senate Estimates And Other Parliamentary Committees


While the proceedings of Senate Estimates Committees are often reported as just another piece of political theatre, they do represent an important accountability mechanism. Senator the Hon John Faulkner, Special Minister of State and Cabinet Secretary, has described Senate Estimates Committees as the “best accountability mechanism of any Australian Parliament” (Senate Hansard, 13 May 2004, … Continue reading

Court Of Appeal Clarifies Scope Of Appeals Against Acquittal


The New South Wales Occupational Health & Safety Act (Act) permits the prosecutor to appeal to a Full Bench of the Industrial Court of New South Wales, against a verdict of acquittal. This is an exception to the normal principles of criminal law. Recently the New South Wales Court of Appeal was called upon to … Continue reading

Misfeasance In Public Office


Claims against government for the tort of misfeasance in public office appear to be on the rise. Usually, persons affected by government actions or decision-making will seek public law remedies. For example, where a person’s interests are affected by a government decision that is made in excess of authority, the person might seek to have … Continue reading

New Australian Domain Names Sale Rules


The Australian Domain Name Administrator (auDA) recently relaxed its rules on domain name transfers by introducing a new Transfers (Change of Registrant) Policy. Significantly, the policy allows domain name registrants to transfer or “sell” their .com.au domain name licences to any other eligible person or entity by any means. So what will be the effect … Continue reading

Freedom Of Information Reforms In ACT


ACT Attorney General Simon Corbell has indicated that Labor will honour the commitments made during the recent ACT election by introducing changes to the Freedom of Information Act 1989 to remove conclusive certificates, except in relation to national security considerations. “Conclusive certificates currently operate to remove documents and information from disclosure under Freedom of Information … Continue reading

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