Government Insights

12 January 2007

Welcome to the January edition of Clayton Utz Government Insights, in which we’ll look recent developments that impact on the way government bodies settle disputes:

  • recent decision of the New South Wales Court of Appeal
  • proportionate liability schemes
  • changed obligations under the Legal Services Directions.

We'll also look at three recent developments in the complex world of FOI, including challenging conclusive certificates and the public-interest in non-disclosure.

Finally, we'll look at the implications for Victoria now that it has a Charter of Human Rights.

Powers of government regulators to bind themselves in contract

By Tom Mosby .

Can a regulator settle a dispute or proceedings using a contract? Tom Mosby looks for answers in a recent case.

Litigation implications of proportionate liability schemes for government bodies

By Doug Galbraith and Xuelin Teo.

Proportionate liability was introduced as part of the wave of tort law reform a few years ago. Doug Galbraith and Xuelin Teo point out the specific effects it has on government bodies.

A Victorian charter of rights: applications and implications for Victoria

By Tom Mosby and Udara Jayasinghe.

Victorians now have a bill of rights, say Tom Mosby and Udara Jayasinghe, setting out minimum standards and providing guidance for the protection of human rights by government departments.

Keeping it private? Reviewing conclusive certificates and the public interest in non-disclosure

By John Carroll and Avinesh Chand.

Challenging conclusive certificates will continue to be difficult following the High Court’s decision in McKinnon, as John Carroll and Avinesh Chand explain

Internal working documents and FOI

By Brendan Bateman and Trisha Cashmere.

The internal working documents exemption under FOI legislation has always been subject to a “public interest” test, but how is that to be applied? Brendan Bateman and Trisha Cashmere look at the recent decision by the NSW Court of Appeal.

Changed obligations under the Legal Services Directions

By Philip Harrison.

Philip Harrison looks at the amended Legal Services Directions and how the changes affect the Federal Government's use of lawyers.

FOI report leads to changes in Victorian agencies

By Sally Sheppard.

New practice notes and administrative processes will be implemented in Victorian departments for handling freedom of information requests following a report by the State Ombudsman, says Sally Sheppard.

Profile: Brendan Bateman

Planning and environment law is not just about development applications and furry animals, says Brendan Bateman.
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