vgso.vic.gov.au

Jessica Fitzgerald

Position:
Solicitor
Qualification:
BA (International Relations), JD
Area of law:
Royal commissions and inquiries, Human rights and equal opportunity, Civil litigation and dispute resolution (including personal injury), Interpretation and development of legislation, Planning and environment, Legal project management and governance

Jessica is a government lawyer who supports the State in responding to Royal Commissions and Inquiries. Her practice includes providing timely and pragmatic advice on strategic, legal and reputational risks arising from Royal Commissions and Inquiries, sensitive public interest immunity and executive privilege matters, preparing witnesses to give evidence before Royal Commissions, and the preparation of State responses to a Royal Commission. She also assists on public law, planning and human rights matters.

Jessica has assisted on the Royal Commissions into the Management of Police Informants, Victoria's Mental Health System, Aged Care Quality and Safety, National Natural Disasters, the Victorian investigation into the Black Summer bushfires undertaken by the Inspector General for Emergency Management (IGEM), and the Victorian COVID-19 Hotel Quarantine Inquiry. She has also supported the State to respond to Inquiries conducted by other states.

Jessica had broad experience commercially prior to joining the VGSO, where she worked in financial services in legal project delivery and corporate governance.

Her experience includes:

  • advising on the privileges and immunities applicable to the Royal Commissions into Victoria's Mental Health System, Aged Care Quality and Safety, and National Natural Disasters
  • providing timely advice for Notices to Produce including co-ordinating rapid document reviews in high-volume, time-sensitive environments
  • assisting the State to prepare for Royal Commission hearings including conducting rapid risk reviews of witness statements released by the Commission, and preparing State witnesses to give evidence
  • drafting detailed risk analysis on the final recommendations for the Royal Commissions into Victoria's Mental Health System, and Aged Care Quality and Safety
  • preparing statements of claim and discovery for strategic human rights litigation matters, including for the International Criminal Court
  • co-ordinating the in-house response to the Royal Commission into Misconduct in Banking and Financial Services at MLC Insurance
  • running the secretariat function for the Joint Steering Committee responsible for delivering a $300 million technology transformation
  • providing advice on a four-month project investigating potential M&A contract breaches.

Phone: 03 9032 3060
Emailjessica.fitzgerald@vgso.vic.gov.au
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