• May 2019

  • 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 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

  • 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.

  • Monday, 17 June 2019 - Tuesday, 18 June 2019
    17 Jun 2019 9:00am - 18 Jun 2019 3:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    This 2 day workshop covers the fundamentals of practising in this challenging practice area. The program includes:

    • Applicable legislation
    • Family Court and Federal Circuit Court systems and procedures
    • Preparation of documents (including divorce applications, initiating applications and affidavits relating to children, maintenance property settlement, enforcement and contempt, and injunctions)
    • Service of documents
    • Attending court hearings
    • Client interviews
    • Briefing counsel
    • Financial agreements
    • Intervention orders
    • Costing the file
    • Risk management

    Note: This workshop runs for two days.

    Presented by: Allana Goldsworthy, Barrister, Victorian Bar

    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, 20 June 2019 - Friday, 21 June 2019
    20 Jun 2019 9:00am - 21 Jun 2019 4:00pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    Gain technical skills in conveyancing transactions which will equip you to confidently operate in legal professional practice as a lawyer or senior conveyancer.

    This interactive and practical workshop covers the essentials, including the following topics:

    • Conduct title searches
    • Make applications for certificates and permits from statutory authorities
    • E-conveyancing and VOI (Verification of Identity)
    • Prepare contracts of sale of real estate
    • Draft vendors' statements
    • Draft transfers of land
    • Attend to mortgage documentation
    • Attend to settlement procedures, stamping and registration
    • Attend to Post settlement procedures
    • PEXA Overview

    This workshop introduces practitioners to all aspects of the conveyancing process from property ownership, how the Sale of Land Act 1962 is applied to contracts for the sale of real estate, searches and lodgement of forms, as well as providing an overview of a conveyancing process from initial instructions to post settlement.

    During this workshop, a representative from PEXA will address the key changes to property-related transactions and will guide you through the PEXA processes and procedures as they currently stand.

    This workshop is ideal for legal practitioners new to practice in this area or those requiring a refresher, as well as those who wish to work in a legal office or conveyancing department in senior conveyancing role.

  • July 2019

  • Thursday, 11 July 2019
    11 Jul 2019 9:00am - 11 Jul 2019 4:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    Early bird price available until Friday 31 May: $665 (incl. GST)

    Full Price: $695 (incl. GST)

    Property Law Legislative and Tax Update - 2019 

    This session will provide the latest legislative developments and tax updates including:


    • The Sale of Land Amendment Bill 2018
    • The Owners Corporation Amendment (Short Stay Accommodation) Act 2018
    • PPSA and Property leases


    • Land Tax Assessments
    • State Taxes Update - Duty and Land Tax
    • GST and Leasing
    • Foreign Resident’s Capital Gains Withholding Tax
    • GST Withholding Regime
    • Treasury Laws Amendment Bill 2018 (Foreign Investor Tax)

    Your Ultimate 2019 Case and Development Update 

    Are you sure you are on top of all the latest property law cases and developments? This session will review recent significant cases and trends in Property related litigation, highlighting key lessons and risk areas. Cases to July 2019 will be covered. This session is The Ultimate Case Update!  

    Issues include:

    • Claims against local Council
    • Residential leases and landlord’s duty of care
    • Planning issues
    • Owners Corporations and responsibility for defects
    • Section173 Agreements and tips and traps relating to Section 173 Agreements

    Complex Conveyancing Issues - Keeping Your Guard Up 

    Even the most straightforward conveyance can spiral out of control.

    This session will draw your attention to the more complex problems and oversights that can occur in conveyancing matters. Our presenter will address these issues including:

    • Dealing with default
    • Rescission
    • Subdivisions
    • Strata Plans
    • Easements and Covenants
    • Vendor Statement blunders

    This session is designed to help you take back control.

    Drafting Mini-Masterclass 

    This session will tackle head on the essential tips and traps in various important agreements.

    • Navigating through the Development Agreement -What to look out for and what to avoid.
    • Deemed Satisfaction Clauses and other risks in Offers to Lease
    • Off the Plan Contracts - Sealing Up the Cracks in 2019. In the wake of Opal Tower and Building cladding problems it is clear that contingencies should now be considered when drafting or reviewing Off The Plan Contracts and advising clients in related contracts.

    This session will provide an overview of the most important factors you must ensure are covered in these documents.

    Lending - Impact of Royal Commission and other Developments on the Property Market 

    This session will cover the impact of the Royal Commission on lending practices, regulation and the property market. How will this impact your firm and your clients in 2019 and beyond.

    Risk Management for Property Lawyers 

    Conveyancing claims were approximately 25 per cent of all claims for 2017/18 and are estimated to cost approximately $10 million. A substantial number of these claims are due to errors in contracts of sale and vendor statements.

    As vendor statements and contracts of sale are the most important documents in a conveyance it is essential that firms get them right.

    In this session we will consider the issues seen by LPLC in contracts of sale and vendor statements and tips will be provided on how to avoid conveyancing claims.

    Presented by: Phillip Nolan, Risk Manager, Legal Practitioners' Liability Committee

    Insurance and Property Law - The Intersection 

    This session will outline important insurance related issues affecting common property transactions. The session is designed to alert you to the issues that, if missed, can cause loss to your client, including:

    • Owners corporations
    • Landlords
    • Pre-settlement Insurance


    Early Bird Price Available - Expires 31 May 2019! Filling Fast!
  • Monday, 22 July 2019
    22 Jul 2019 9:00am - 22 Jul 2019 4:00pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    This workshop provides an essential overview of Estate Planning from initial consideration of options, through to executors responsibilities, death benefits trusts and more. Gain confidence to be able to operate more effectively in this complex area.

    Topics covered are:

    •     Ownership - 4 key types
    •     Key planning issues
    •     Superannuation death benefits
    •     Drafting exercise - binding death benefit nomination
    •     Estate planning and existing family/hybrid trusts
    •     Key attributes for wills and testamentary trusts
    •     Drafting exercise - beneficiary controlled testamentary trust
    •     Vulnerable beneficiaries
    •     Means tested pension eligibility - operation of deeming rules
    •     Income tax concessions
    •     Capital gains tax
    •     Enduring powers of attorney
    •     Philanthropic or charitable trusts
    •     Executors' responsibilities
    •     Insurance death benefits trusts
    •     After the event estate planning


    Presented by: Allan Swan, Director - Estate Planning EQUATION – Preventative Law

    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'.

  • August 2019

  • Friday, 2 August 2019
    2 Aug 2019 9:00am - 2 Aug 2019 3:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    Offered in conjunction with Kaplan Professional, this one-day workshop covers the principles involved in understanding and constructing financial statements and works through a practical case study on financial accounts.

    Learning outcomes include:

    • Build confidence in reading and interpreting financial information.
    • Explain the underpinning accounting principles & assumptions.
    • Explore the purpose and development of a general purpose financial report.
    • Examine the relationship between the balance sheet, income statement, cash flow statement & changes in shareholder equity.
    • Explain how the information contained in the four main financial statements are analysed and interpreted.
    • Non-financial performance indicators.

    Topics covered are:

    • Financial reports – accounting principles generally, financial statements and users of financial statements, income statements, balance sheets and cash flow statements.
    • Putting it into practice – case study, account standards, tax versus accounting profits, asset measurement and valuation methods.

    Presented by: Lachlan McColl, Director, Value ADE

    Please note that no refunds or transfers are available for this program.

  • Wednesday, 7 August 2019
    7 Aug 2019 9:00am - 7 Aug 2019 4:30pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    Early bird price available until Friday 21 June: $665 (incl. GST)

    Full Price: $695 (incl. GST)

    ASIC Action 2019   

    Federal Court Action Against Former Directors:

    ASIC has issued proceedings in the Federal Court against former Directors of Tennis Australia alleging that they:

    • withheld material information from the Tennis Australia board and breached other duties.

    This case is said to have important implications including:

    • Directors duty to not withhold relevant information from the board
    • Board responsibilities in commercial negotiations and regarding commercial opportunities
    • Board members conflicts of interest and special preferences

    This session will provide an overview of the key lessons to take away from this case  so far so that you can tailor your advice as required from this early stage.


    ASIC Action over Failure to Produce Documents:

    In proceedings commenced n the Federal Court, ASIC sought an order against AMP compelling them to produce various documents.

    This session will outline those proceedings and will highlight the implications for in house counsel, their external lawyers and their client.

    Agreeing to Agree – When Letters of Intent or Heads of Agreement Become Binding 

    Despite a common misconception that you can’t have an agreement to agree, in a number of significant decisions the courts have found that “in principle” or heads of agreement expressed to be “subject to contract” may sometimes be enforceable.

    This session will examine the circumstances where this can occur inadvertently, as well as appropriate mechanisms to minimise dispute where the parties do intend for their preliminary agreement to be binding. It will also consider the risks of negotiations surrounding the initial agreement being deemed misleading and deceptive conduct.

    Presented by: Alex Bannister, Special Counsel, Lander & Rogers 

    How Vulnerable Are Your Staff – Cyber Threats and Security 

    It's easy to be fooled by cyber criminals. Cyber criminals are better than ever at targeting businesses and are always a step ahead. Psychological tools and manipulation are now being used to gain access to confidential information.  As you increase your technology protections how can you be confident that it's going to make a difference?  Your staff are prime targets for cyber criminals to groom and then infiltrate your organisation, and staff are often unaware they have been used to gain access to systems and confidential information, until it’s too late.

    This session will outline how your staff and organisation may be targeted and how to put simple yet effective training and protections in place to block common vulnerable entry points.

    Presented by: Craig Macaulay, Executive Director, KordaMentha 

    Technology, Processes, Change – Getting ‘Buy In’ 

    How do you get your team and the boards agreement on the choice and implementation of technology? How do you identify the need, the technology and explain the benefits in a way that is simple to understand? What does an advice to the board need to include and cover, in order to get sign off? And how do you get your team to agree to the implementation of technology that will improve efficiency but may also reduce the size of the legal team or support team?

    This session will outline the technology issues that are essential for every in-house counsel to understand, and how to overcome the challenges that flow in terms of board and team 'buy in'.

    Presented by: Andrew Mellett, Chief Executive Officer, Plexus

    Learn to Say No And Still Retain The Board’s Confidence 

    Influencing and building trust between the in-house counsel, the CEO, the board and staff depends on the ability of the in-house counsel being confident, calm and approachable. These skills are important in showing them that whilst you 'have their back' you will also need at times to be firm and direct in your advice, even if it results in strong objection or at worst, obstruction. The CEO, board and the staff will more readily accept advice they don't want to hear if they respect the in-house counsel giving that advice.

    This session will outline the essential ways to increase your confidence and build healthy relationships and the ability to effectively influence the CEO, board and staff.

    Clarity, Clear Communication and Simplifying your Advice 

    Being able to simplify complex concepts and giving succinct yet full advice are communication and drafting skills that are requisite for all in-house counsel. Long complicated advice may 'cover' you but be confusing for the client to understand and may prolong the process. Getting the point across and making it clear about the decision that you are seeking, will increase the chances that the client will make the decision you need.

    This session will outline the non-negotiables when it comes to clear communications and advice to the CEO and the board.

    Presented by: Bob Milstein, Lawyer, Plain Language Trainer and Document Writer, Words and Beyond

    The Hayne Report – Culture, Expectation, Caught in The Middle 

    A significant takeaway from the fallout of the Hayne Report is the pressure on in-house counsel to navigate a client’s expectation that client documents  submitted to third parties may be ‘crafted’ in such a  way that is borderline unethical and misleading. What is acceptable and what crosses the line from ‘creative writing’ to a misleading statement? You can't afford to get this wrong.

    Presented by: Matthew Critchley, Partner, Corrs Chambers Westgarth


    Early Bird Price Available - Expires 21 June 2019! Filling Fast!
  • Thursday, 8 August 2019
    8 Aug 2019 9:00am - 8 Aug 2019 4:00pm (Australia - Melbourne)
    Leo Cussen Centre for Law, Level 16, 15 William Street, Melbourne

    This workshop is designed to provide a solid foundation for those wishing to practice in this area. The program includes:

    • Intestacy
    • Domestic partners
    • Using will precedents
    • Common drafting practices
    • Considerations in preparing a will
    • Codicils
    • Execution
    • Revocation
    • Alteration
    • Rectification
    • Wills storage
    • Testamentary capacity
    • Undue influence
    • Executor's duties
    • Executor's commission
    • Powers of trustees
    • Essential and optional provisions and clauses
    • Costing the file
    • Basic estate planning
    • Legal professional responsibilities
    • Powers of Attorney

    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'.