Category: Judiciary

Clive Palmer and the bankruptcy ‘Star Chamber’?  The granting of powers of inquiry to courts under Ch III of the Constitution

BY DAN WESTBURY

In Palmer v Ayers, the High Court considered the congruence of powers of examination given to the Federal Court in its supervision of bankruptcy with Chapter III of the Constitution. In modern constitutional law, the separation … Read the rest

Burns v Corbett: the latest word on State tribunals and judicial power

BY ANNA OLIJNYK

We live in an age of tribunals. Although tribunals existed at the time of federation, the framers of the Australian Constitution could never have imagined the prominence of administrative tribunals in our justice system today. Small wonder, … Read the rest

Ceremony matters: The lasting significance of the swearing-in ceremony of Chief Justice Susan Kiefel

 BY HEATHER ROBERTS

Monday, 30 January 2017 was an historic day. At 10:15am Susan Kiefel was sworn-in as Chief Justice of the High Court, the first woman to hold the office since the Court’s creation in 1903.

With the notable … Read the rest

Chief Justice Susan Kiefel and the politics of judicial diversity

kmclouglinBY KCASEY MCLOUGHLIN

Australian women waited over eighty years for the first woman to sit on the bench of the High Court of Australia. Now, three decades later a particularly resilient glass ceiling has been shattered with the announcement that … Read the rest

Apprehended bias: a public critique of the fair-minded lay observer

Anna Olijnyk

BY ANNA OLIJNYK

The controversy surrounding Royal Commissioner Dyson Heydon AC QC has exposed the rule against apprehended bias to public scrutiny. And the public was not wholly impressed by what it saw.

Public lawyers should care about this: the … Read the rest

Politicians as Judges

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BY DOUGLAS MCDONALD

Judicial appointments of serving or former politicians were once commonplace in Australia. Thirteen members of state, federal or colonial Parliaments have been appointed to the High Court of Australia. However, the last former parliamentarian on the High … Read the rest

Social media and the courts

Screen Shot 2015-08-06 at 11.08.33 amBY ALYSIA BLACKHAM AND GEORGE WILLIAMS

Social media is pervasive in many sectors of Australian society. However, Australia’s courts are generally taking a cautious approach to using this technology to enhance and complement their processes. Where courts have used social … Read the rest

Human, All Too Human: Human Fallibility and the Separation of Powers

J Crowe photoBY JONATHAN CROWE

Humans are fallible—and this fallibility is the hardest thing for us to grasp. We have limited knowledge—and the limits of our knowledge routinely prevent us from realising just how much we do not know. Our reasoning processes … Read the rest

Judicial gender diversity in Australia – can we talk about quotas?

ALynch photo

BY ANDREW LYNCH

There is a distinct irony that while the current Commonwealth Attorney-General has unapologetically reclaimed complete executive discretion over federal judicial appointments, the Premier of Victoria has announced that his government will meet a 50 per cent quota … Read the rest

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