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Top 10: Updating the profession’s newest lawyers

In this fortnight’s wrap-up, Protégé is looking (again) at Christian Porter’s (new?) Federal Court matter, why females are so enticed to the legal profession now, the deal between the Western Australian Bar and Julian Burnside, and more.

user iconNaomi Neilson 23 August 2021 NewLaw
Updating the profession’s newest lawyers
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1: Porter defamation: Former A-G ‘classic example’ of litigant refusing to accept risks to reputation, media outlets argue

Returning to the Federal Court for yet another application, lawyers for major media outlets have accused Christian Porter of pre-emptively seeking orders against them as a “classic example” of a party who proceeds with litigation in Australia’s “most open court” but refuses to accept that it comes with damages to their reputation.

2: Lawyer in female genital mutilation investigation to be removed from roll


An order has been made to strike out the name of the lawyer who counselled fathers of female genital mutilation victims to lie to police, an offence that the Court of Appeal said “strikes at the heart of our justice system”. The judgement is an interesting case study in the part lawyers have to play in the administration of justice, especially for major crimes, but we recommend reading with caution.

3: ‘More young women are seeing a career in law as an attractive option’

According to the fifth annual National Profile of Solicitors report, there are more women entering law in Australia than men, but what is it about the profession that is now attracting more female legal professionals? Two senior executives spoke to Lawyers Weekly about how flexibility and support are playing a part.

4: Submissions open for 2021 Women in Law Awards

In really exciting news, Lawyers Weekly is thrilled to announce that this year’s Women in Law Awards is now open to submissions. Law students are very encouraged to apply, either for themselves or for a colleague/peer!

5: Addressing the current (and flawed) tests for biases in courtrooms

The laws on judicial impartiality and bias are fundamentally flawed and, if allowed to continue in its current state, can only damage the public confidence in administration of justice. In a conversation with Lawyers Weekly, a solicitor with the National Justice Project explains what reforms and rule changes are needed to save the system.

6: ‘Ugly, shameful secret’: Rex Patrick commences action to reveal confidential documents in Bernard Collaery prosecution

Amid Bernard Collaery’s ongoing and highly secret prosecution, independent senator Rex Patrick has commenced action in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal to overturn a decision by John Howard’s government to block the release of cabinet papers that detail the Timor Sea boundary negotiations.

7: ‘Be open and willing to learn”: Tips from an award-winning barrister

In the midst of a global pandemic, this 30 Under 30 winner shared what she thinks will challenge the legal industry in the near future as well as valuable advice for younger lawyers.

8: WA Bar criticised for ‘baffling’ defence of Julian Burnside

Senior partner Mark Leibler has criticised the Western Australian Bar for its “baffling” defence of high-profile barrister Julian Burnside’s controversial tweet, drawing out a clarification from the bar that it does not support the use of anti-Semitic language. 

9: WA looks ahead to modernised laws as ‘historic’ abortion legislation passes

In what has been praised as a “landmark achievement” by human rights lawyers, the Western Australian government has brought its legislation in line with the rest of Australia by passing a bill to create protective zones around abortion services. However, the state still has a long way to go to decriminalise and modernise its laws.

10: ‘We can’t just pretend that nothing has changed’

Malika Chandrasegaran, partner at Herbert Smith Freehills, Dr Alice Orchiston, a UniSearch expert at the faculty of law and justice at UNSW and Professor Pamela Hanrahan, a UniSearch expert and professor at the faculty of business at UNSW spoke recently on The Lawyers Weekly Show (on an episode produced in collaboration with Unisearch) about the legal environment post-pandemic and the value of leaders being more open and honest.