find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Natural disaster zones need lawyers

Natural disaster zones need lawyers

Legal assistance is an essential element in emergency plans and recovery strategies with regard to natural disasters such as the Black Saturday bushfires, according to the Bushfire Legal Help…

Legal assistance is an essential element in emergency plans and recovery strategies with regard to natural disasters such as the Black Saturday bushfires, according to the Bushfire Legal Help report released this week.

Bushfire Legal Help is a partnership of six Victorian legal agencies - including the Federation of Community Legal Centres, the Public Interest Law Clearing House, the Victorian Bar, the Law Institute of Victoria, the Victorian Law Foundation and Victoria Legal Aid - which was established within days of Victoria's Black Saturday disaster.

It responded to more than 2165 enquiries and provided ongoing legal support and resources to more than 800 of those affected by the bushfires.

The 40-page report found that despite myriad legal issues that can arise from a state of emergency - such as identification, wills, estates, housing and tenancy, insurance, property law and family issues - legal services are conspicuously absent from emergency management policies and plans, at both state and national levels.

The report also calls for better protection of legal and human rights during inquiries such as the Bushfire Royal Commission, and describes in detail the contributions of each of the agencies involved in Bushfire Legal Help, including personal stories of the harrowing experiences faced by victims.

Lawyers at the Kinglake relief centre, for example, assisted a young couple whose home had been destroyed by fire.

"The lawyers helped us with all our paperwork - right from getting a birth certificate for our little baby, who was only four days old, to sorting out issues with our landlord," recounted the couple.

"The lawyers worked around our needs and even called us out of hours. We are so grateful."

All in all, the report made three broad recommendations: that legal assistance be recognised as a vital component of natural disaster emergency services; that emergency health, housing, counselling and legal services be co-located in times of a natural disaster recovery; and that the legal sector inform governments and planning bodies of the longer-term legal problems created by major emergencies.

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

Natural disaster zones need lawyers
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Scales of Justice
Oct 19 2017
‘Ego status’ compelled ex-lawyer to defraud $2.97m, court told
Debarred lawyer John Gordon Bradfield told an NSW District Court that he was driven by “ego status...
Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA), Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legislation,
Oct 19 2017
ALA welcomes ‘tough’ Qld manslaughter laws
The Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA) has welcomed Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legisl...
Legal podcasts, tune in, microphone
Oct 19 2017
Legal podcasts you have to tune in to right now
The rise of the internet has hailed in a new dawn for storytelling. Here’s our top pick of podcast...
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'...
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...
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 & ...