find the latest legal job
Corporate/Commercial Lawyers (2-5 years PAE)
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Specialist commercial law firm · Long-term career progression
View details
Graduate Lawyer / Up to 1.5 yr PAE Lawyer
Category: Personal Injury Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Mentoring Opportunity in Regional QLD · Personal Injury Law
View details
Corporate and Commercial Partner
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Full time · Join a leading Adelaide commercial law firm
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Sydney NSW
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
Uniform laws to be weighed up

Uniform laws to be weighed up

FEDERAL PARLIAMENT’S Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee wants to know whether the differences in state and federal laws affect trade and commerce in this country. Referred to the…

FEDERAL PARLIAMENT’S Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee wants to know whether the differences in state and federal laws affect trade and commerce in this country.

Referred to the Committee last month, there is to be an inquiry into the lack of harmonisation within the legal system, and between the legal systems of Australia and New Zealand, with particular emphasis on ways to reduce costs and duplication.

According to the chairman of the Committee, Peter Slipper MP, the Committee “will not be making judgments on the relative merits of the different systems, and what should be the standard”.

However, the governments of those jurisdictions will make the final decisions, Slipper said. “What we aim to do is to identify what areas of legal procedures, partnership law, evidence law and standards of products,” he said. He acknowledged that other issues may arise in the course of the inquiry.

The Committee will also be looking at different ways in which harmonisation of laws could be achieved, looking beyond past attempts to see if new models could be developed.

“A number of High Court decisions have affected cooperative schemes developed by the state and federal governments. Is amending the Constitution the only way to guarantee such schemes or are there other options?” Slipper asked.

According to the Parliament’s background brief on the harmonisation of legal systems, the starting point for any examination of legislative power in Australia is the Constitution. It should be noted, the paper states, that the Commonwealth lacks a general commerce power. “It has legislative power over trade and commerce with other countries and among other states, but not trade and commerce within state boundaries. Despite this, the desirability of national regulatory regimes has been recognised in a number of areas, most notably in connection with corporations law.”

“While many argue that uniformity and centralisation of the law bring commercial certainty and benefit, there is by no means universal support for such uniformity and centralisation across all policy areas,” the paper reads.

The terms of reference ask the Committee to examine “legal obstacles to greater federal/state and Australian/New Zealand cooperation”. This means that should the Committee decide that greater harmonisation is desirable, it should look at how it may be achieved and whether there are any legal obstacles that must be addressed.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Uniform laws to be weighed up
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Scales of Justice
Dec 15 2017
Timing ‘critical’ in unusual contempt of court ruling
A recent case could have interesting implications for contempt of court rulings, according to a Ferr...
Dec 14 2017
International arbitration and business culture
Promoted by Maxwell Chambers. This article discusses the impact of international arbitration on t...
Papua New Guinea flag
Dec 14 2017
World-first mining case launched in PNG
Citizens of Papua New Guinea have launched landmark legal proceedings against the country’s govern...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...