• May 2019

  • Monday, 27 May 2019
    27 May 2019 9:00am - 27 May 2019 3:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    This practical workshop is designed for practitioners working in litigation. This unique one day course includes discussion of the key elements to managing and using evidence in litigation.
    The following topics are covered:
    • Admissible Evidence
    • Circumstantial and propensity evidence
    • Proof of documents
    • Expert evidence
    • Privilege and self-incrimination
    • Credibility
    • Hearsay
    • Evidence gathering via Social Media


    Essentials are workshops for lawyers new to, or wanting to update knowledge in, particular skills or practice areas. These workshops aim to cover the 'essentials'.

  • Tuesday, 28 May 2019
    28 May 2019 5:00pm - 28 May 2019 6:00pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    Practitioners are often instructed to make or consider offers of settlement, enter into settlement negotiations and draw settlement agreements and / or enforce their terms.  It is imperative that practitioners have excellent drafting skills in order to accurately record settlement and minimise client risk.

    This seminar will cover:

    • “without prejudice” offers and negotiations;
    • forms of settlement offers;
    • drafting terms of settlement and releases; and
    • key risk areas.

    Presented by: Graydon Dowd, Partner, Hall & Wilcox

  • Wednesday, 29 May 2019
    29 May 2019 9:00am - 29 May 2019 12:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    The division and disposal of real property and other assets, and the distribution of income, as part of family law proceedings or other arrangements can result in adverse taxation implications if due care is not taken. Every well rounded family lawyer needs this knowledge in their toolkit.

    Although family lawyers are not financial advisers and cannot provide financial advice to clients, settlement agreements must still be drafted in a way that best minimises tax implications for all parties.

    It is imperative that family lawyers have a basic grasp of the essential taxation concepts required, in order to negotiate the best outcome, while minimising financial risk for their clients. This may also minimise risk of a claim of failing to recognise the appropriate financial triggers.

    This ‘must attend’ program for all family lawyers  will cover the following critical topics:


    Tax Tips and Traps for Family Lawyers 

    Common tax issues faced by family lawyers including:

    • CGT;
    • Transfers of assets;
    • Spousal maintenance;
    • How to best structure such arrangements for the advantage of all parties involved;
    • And other common financial aspects of family law.

    Presented by: Briana Kotzapavlidis, Principal, Tisher Liner FC Law

    Tax Issues in Family Trusts 

    For every ‘straightforward’ family law property settlement, there is a settlement which can involve a complex web of family trusts giving rise to significant taxation issues.

    This session will address the due diligence that family lawyers must be aware of when advising a client on tax implications that can arise from family trusts, including:

    • Different Trust types;
    • Rollover relief;
    • CGT;
    • Stamp Duty; and
    • Trusts tax triggers.

    Don’t risk missing out on this important event!

    Presented by: F John Morgan, Barrister, Victorian Bar


    Filling Fast!
  • Wednesday, 29 May 2019
    29 May 2019 5:00pm - 29 May 2019 6:00pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    Do you sometimes work with ‘challenging colleagues’? Are your clients pushing you to your limits? Are you fed up? Want some strategies to communicate and deal with tricky situations?

    This seminar is designed to provide practical and durable communication techniques and strategies. It will also outline the legal responsibilities vis a vis communication with clients and will include:

    • Choosing the most appropriate communication method, ie- email, face to face meetings
    • Building rapport and trust
    • Developing empathy
    • Obligations to communicate with your client pursuant to the Uniform Law
    • Recognising and avoiding legal liability for bullying and harassment when dealing with challenging colleagues and clients

    Keeping it real in 2019!

    Presented by: Angela Burr, Director, Saunders Law

  • Thursday, 30 May 2019
    30 May 2019 9:00am - 30 May 2019 12:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    This event is chaired by:

    Ian Lulham, Deputy President and Director, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal

    VCAT – Powers, Practice & Procedure 

    This session is a must for all those who practice in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal jurisdiction!

    Tribunals such as VCAT have no inherent jurisdiction. VCAT has original and review jurisdiction only. Our presenter will give an overview of VCAT’s jurisdiction, structure and limitations and outline in which circumstances VCAT is the most appropriate jurisdiction to initiate proceedings.

    Finally, the degree of formality involved in proceedings before VCAT varies considerably.

    This session is designed to build confidence when preparing documents to be submitted to and appearing before VCAT and will outline the mistakes you need to avoid.

    Presented by: Suzanne Kirton, Senior Member, Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal

    VCAT Evidence 


    Prepare and Presenting the Evidence:

    Practitioners must be aware of how to deal with documents and other forms of evidence before VCAT.

    This session will discuss everything you need to know when preparing and presenting your next case at VCAT to ensure you’re fully prepared to put your best evidence forward whilst remaining attentive of the unique practical and evidentiary consequences in this jurisdiction.


    Expert Evidence:

    This session will outline the rules and regulations for Expert Evidence in VCAT and will cover topics including:

    • The standard of proof test at VCAT;
    • What is the duty of an expert witness to the Tribunal?
    • What must an expert evidence report include;
    • Service, filing and format of an expert evidence report;
    • How expert evidence is given at a hearing including concurrent evidence?;
    • What happens if the expert witness changes his or her opinion?;
    • How is expert evidence given at a hearing?;
    • What is required from the expert when directed by the Tribunal for an ‘Expert Conclave’ and ‘Scott Schedule’;

    And more!

    Presented by: Eric Riegler, Deputy President, Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal

    Leave to Appeal VCAT Decisions 

    This session will outline the limitations and requirements when appealing VCAT decisions following the recent changes including procedures for instituting the appeal and the test for the grant of leave to appeal.  

    Our presenter will outline issues including:

    • The grounds of appeal and the ‘tests’ that apply;
    • Process of appealing;
    • The changes to s148 of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 1998 in relation to the appeals process;
    • The differences between Supreme Court and Court of Appeal;
    • Plus Case Update.


    Presented by: Adam Rollnik, Barrister, Victorian Bar


    Filling Fast!
  • Thursday, 30 May 2019
    30 May 2019 1:00pm - 30 May 2019 2:00pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    Sometimes, the most simple and straightforward tasks can hold the greatest potential for problems – this is certainly the case with solicitors’ certificates.  Irrespective of whether the certificate is being sought by “walk-in” or long-standing clients, practitioners need to be extremely diligent in their review of the relevant documents, the advice provided to the clients and their own file management.   This may be difficult given time and costing limitations, not to mention the pressure from clients to “simply sign off” on what they may view as just another administrative loan document.

    In this session, our presenter, will highlight some of the common – and serious – errors made by practitioners as well as provide useful tips on how to minimise risk exposure.

    Presented by: Heather Hibberd, Chief Risk Manager, Legal Practitioners' Liability Committee

  • June 2019

  • Monday, 3 June 2019
    3 Jun 2019 9:00am - 3 Jun 2019 3:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    This workshop covers all of the essential elements in the practice of business law from setting up company structures to conducting commercial transactions.

    The program includes:

    • Partnerships
    • Deeds
    • Business names
    • Acting for the vendor
    • Acting for a purchaser
    • Searches
    • Settlements
    • Finance
    • Insurance issues

    This program aims to provide a well rounded foundation for confident practice in this area.

    Essentials are workshops for lawyers new to, or wanting to update knowledge in, particular skills or practice areas. These workshops aim to cover the 'essentials'.

  • Thursday, 6 June 2019
    6 Jun 2019 9:00am - 6 Jun 2019 4:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    This workshop covers the essentials of protecting and exploiting intellectual property, including patenting invention; registering designs and trademarks; copyright and its use in protection of designs and trademarks; trademarks in business; infringement proceedings; domain names and dispute resolution proceedings and a review of conducting searches for patents, trademarks and designs.


  • Thursday, 6 June 2019
    6 Jun 2019 5:00pm - 6 Jun 2019 6:00pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    The area of Contract Law has seen significant changes recently. In order to properly advise your clients, you need to ensure that you are on top of all the developments.

    This seminar will provide an update on Contractual Penalties and more. With reference to significant cases this session will cover topics including:

    • When a fee constitutes a penalty;
    • Drafting tips for ensuring that clauses are not deemed to be penalties; and
    • Strategies for dealing with purported penalty clauses.

    It will also address the issue of unconscionable conduct and the current state of play of the unfair contract terms to small business contracts

    An essential seminar for all practitioners wanting to ensure their knowledge is up to date in this complex area.

    Presented by: Jennika Anthony-Shaw, Barrister, Victorian Bar

  • Tuesday, 11 June 2019
    11 Jun 2019 5:00pm - 11 Jun 2019 6:00pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    With reference to recent cases and common errors this seminar will highlight the reasons why you need to update your standard costs agreement in time for the new financial year. 

    Costs agreements are one of the most important documents used by legal practitioners, yet once drafted they are rarely reviewed except to update charge out rates. Failing to keep pace with legislative changes and case law developments can, however, result in outdated, unclear and/or inaccurate costs agreements, potentially leaving practitioners exposed and unable to recover outstanding legal fees.

    This session will consider how and why you should re examine and consider updating and/or tailoring your costs agreement in light of recent and upcoming legislative changes, which impact significantly on the content and terminology used. It will also explore common errors in costs agreements, with reference to recent decisions, and provide tips on how to ensure that the costs agreement you issue is appropriate and will minimise the likelihood of problems arising.

    Presented by: Penelope Robertson, Costs Lawyer / Principal, Ethical Costing & Legal Services

  • Wednesday, 12 June 2019
    12 Jun 2019 9:00am - 12 Jun 2019 4:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    This program is chaired by:

    James Smart, Partner, Maddocks

    Drafting Effective Statutory Instruments   

    The ability to draft clear and legally enforceable statutory instruments is an essential part of every government lawyer’s toolkit. This session will provide the do’s and don’ts on drafting statutory instruments including:

    • Purpose and effectiveness of the instrument;
    • Structure; and
    • Clarity.

    Ensure your skills are up to date!

    Presented by: Gemma Varley, Consultant Legislative Drafter, Private Practice

    Public Service, Personal Opinion and Anonymity  

    In light of the recent case of Comcare v Banerji the question about a government employee’s ability to make anonymous public comments that may reflect on the employer, is in the spotlight.  

    This session will address the current legal position and the risks 

    Presented by: Richard Leder, Partner, Corrs Chambers Westgarth

    Legislation - Update and Impact  

    Our presenters will outline key updates in the following areas:

    • The Local Jobs First Act 2003 amended from The Victorian Industry Participation Policy Act 2003 (in force since August 2018);

    This session will address the impact of this Act on procurement processes and contract requirements affecting government lawyers in Victoria.


    • The Integrity and Accountability Legislation Amendment (Public Interest Disclosures, Oversight and Independence) Bill 2018;

    This Bill, if enacted, will introduce key reforms particularly around Whistleblower protections and an expansion of the types of conduct that can be disclosed.

    This session will address the key proposed changes.


    • The Government Procurement (Judicial Review) Act 2018 (Cth) was enacted in October 2018.

    The Act introduced a regime whereby the conduct of Commonwealth agencies may be challenged as a result of their procurement processes.

    This session will address the key changes and impact on government departments.  

    Statutory Interpretation - What Do You Mean? 

    Statutory Interpretation done well, never gets old. It’s an essential survival tool and always needs to be sharpened. This session will outline the most important elements of:

    • Context and Purpose
    • Explanation and Persuasion.

    Presented by: Peter Fox QC, Barrister, Victorian Bar

    Hear from a Leader! Leading My Team - Inspire and Motivate  

    Inspiring and motivating the legal team is essential to maximising performance and maintaining morale. This is particularly important as budgets shrink and client expectations increase. What are the essential skills that a leading government lawyer needs to have and what are simple yet highly effective ways to increase team effectiveness and individual job satisfaction? 

    This session will outline the ways that you can optimise your and your teams motivation, performance and job satisfaction.

    Presented by: Marlo Baragwanath, Victorian Government Solicitor, Victorian Government Solicitor's Office 

    Conflicts of interest and Disclosure Policies - When do the facts fall through the cracks?   

    Conflicts and Disclosure Policies are a fact of life for government lawyers. But are they always complied with in real life? What are the major risk areas for government lawyers and their colleagues when interpreting and applying these policies. How are the policies being flouted and what are the potential consequences of getting caught.

    This session will address these issues and provide guidance in this tricky area.

    Workplace Behaviour – A 2019 Update

    Recent high profile examples illustrate the importance of adhering strictly to appropriate workplace behaviour guidelines. Sexual harassment or bullying allegations can destroy a career and can also bring a lawyer within the investigatory powers of the Disciplinary bodies. Now more than ever, it is critical for all lawyers to understand the strict rules around what is and is not appropriate behaviour in the workplace. By reference to recent cases this session will address this issue and provide guidance on how to avoid breaching the professional conduct rules prohibiting inappropriate workplace behaviour including sexual harassment and bullying.  


    This session is designed to be informal and from your own point of view, with little preparation of materials necessary. As there will be other panellists and question time, the hour long session will be split between you, so not requiring you to speak for the whole 1 hour..

    Personal Liability in the Public Sector 

    The area of personal liability keeps all lawyers awake at night.  This session will address developments in the area of personal liability in government.

  • Thursday, 13 June 2019
    13 Jun 2019 5:00pm - 13 Jun 2019 6:00pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    Legal outsourcing can take many forms, from engaging local firms to undertake discrete tasks, to sending complex discovery jobs to legal process outsourcing providers (LPOs) overseas.  Outsourcing work can increase efficiency and result in significant cost savings, yet many practitioners are wary of passing on responsibility to a third party, and some are simply not aware of the myriad outsourcing options available to them.

    This session will explore some of the traditional and contemporary options for legal outsourcing, considering the risks and benefits of each and providing helpful tips for making outsourcing successful.