We provide administrative law advice to Victorian agencies, departments and decision makers and act in related litigation.
We conduct judicial review proceedings in superior courts, merits review proceedings in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) and help decision makers to make, protect and defend the best possible decisions.
Freedom of Information
We advise government agencies on decision-making under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act), including the applicability of exemptions. We take a strategic, cost-effective approach, focused on minimising disputes and managing risks.
We represent government agencies in the conduct of review proceedings under the FOI Act before the Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner (OVIC) and VCAT. Our experience and strong relationships mean we can ensure strategic objectives and concerns are thoroughly addressed through these processes.
We represent government agencies in the conduct of privacy complaints referred to VCAT under the Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014 (PDP Act) and the Health Records Act 2001 (HR Act). We have a successful track record of helping our clients to achieve an early resolution of these disputes at compulsory conference.
We advise government agencies on their privacy obligations, including those arising under the PDP Act and the HR Act.
We represent government agencies in the conduct of proceedings before VCAT, in both the original jurisdiction and review jurisdiction of VCAT.
In VCAT's original jurisdiction, we represent government agencies in a range of proceedings, including the referral of disciplinary matters to VCAT, and privacy complaints referred by OVIC or the Health Complaints Commissioner (HCC).
In VCAT's review jurisdiction, we represent government agencies in merits review proceedings involving a range of statutory regimes, with a specialisation in regulatory and disciplinary matters.
We represent government agencies in the conduct of judicial review proceedings, with a focus on regulatory and disciplinary matters.
Administrative law advice
We advise on complex questions of statutory interpretation and obligations on administrative decision-makers, including obligations to provide procedural fairness.
We represent the Attorney-General in their role as Protector of Charities ('parens patriae') under both the Charities Act 1978 and the general law. The Attorney-General has various powers in relation to charitable trusts, including:
- approving cy-pres applications
- responding to applications by trustees for an opinion or advice in relation to trust property
- investigating and inquiring into the administration or management of a charity or charitable estate.
We also represent the Attorney-General where they are the defendant to claims for family provision under Part IV of the Administration and Probate Act 1958 where provisions of the will of the deceased create a charitable trust.
VCAT review matters
We regularly act for administrative decision makers in applications for review at VCAT.
- preparing for and appearing at directions hearings
- administrative mentions and hearings
- preparing and settling submissions and managing alternative dispute resolution procedures.