In the media

Legal Aid Victoria: Robust law reform is crucial to ensure respect at work
A key recommendation that Victoria Legal Aid and other legal and community services support is a more proactive and preventative approach from employers, that lifts the burden from victims of harassment. This includes an enforceable "positive duty" under the Sex Discrimination Act (08 April 2021). More...

Australian Government's response to Respect @Work report
In 'A Roadmap for Respect: Preventing and Addressing Sexual Harassment in Australian Workplaces' (the Roadmap for Respect), the Government provides its response and sets out its long-term commitment to preventing and addressing sexual harassment (08 April 2021). More...

Stage 2 defamation reform process begins
Attorney General Mark Speakman said the second stage of the NSW-led review of national defamation laws opens in new window will examine the extent to which platforms such as search engines and social media sites should be liable for reputation-damaging material published online (07 April 2021). More...

New Federation website goes National
A new source of information about the architecture of Australia's Federal relations has been launched by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Opening the new website '', PM&C said it provided the latest updates on the National Cabinet, the National Federation Reform Council and other intergovernmental bodies (05 April 2021). More...

533 million Facebook users' phone numbers and personal data have been leaked online
The personal data of over 500 million Facebook users has been posted online in a low-level hacking forum. The data includes phone numbers, full names, location, email address, and biographical information, and could be used by hackers to impersonate people and commit fraud (03 April 2021). More...

Reappointment of sex discrimination commissioner and age discrimination commissioner
Attorney-General Michaelia Cash congratulates Ms Kate Jenkins and the Hon Dr Kay Patterson AO on their reappointment as Commissioners of the Australian Human Rights Commission (01 April 2021). More...

Victoria leading the way towards gender equality
Victoria has taken a nation-leading step towards achieving gender equal workplaces in the public sector, with the commencement of the Australian-first Gender Equality Act 2020 (31 March 2021). More...

Helping renters navigate tenancy rights as COVID-19 left them 'reeling'
Tenants Victoria needed to help people understand and assert their tenancy rights while facing the compound stressors of pandemic uncertainty, changing rules and legislation, and a near overnight shift to remote work (29 March 2021). More...

Royal Commission to probe veterans' deaths
A Royal Commission into the suicide of Defence and military veterans is to be established by the federal Government following consultation with State and Territory Governments. Crucially, the Royal Commission will not defer, delay or limit in any way, any proposed or announced policy, legislation or regulation that we are currently implementing (22 April 2021). More...

Tackling sexual harassment in our courts and tribunals
The Andrews Labor Government has welcomed the report of the Review of Sexual Harassment in Victorian Courts – marking another important step forward in stamping out sexual harassment in the workplace (19 April 2021). More...

Criminal jury trials on track to resume in regions
The Andrews Labor Government is boosting regional courtroom capacity, enabling criminal jury trials to resume – keeping the justice system moving while improving the safety of communities (19 April 2021). More...

New appointment to Victoria's highest Court
The Andrews Labor Government announced the appointment of Solicitor-General Kristen Walker QC as a judge of the Court of Appeal (13 April 2021). More...

In practice and courts

Law Council update
The Law Council produces a fortnighly newsletter which highlights the Law Council's important activities and advocacy. View the latest editions here:
1 April 2021
15 April 2021

AAT bulletin
The AAT Bulletin is a weekly publication containing a list of recent AAT decisions and information relating to appeals against AAT decisions.
Issue No. 7/2021, 6 April 2021
Issue No. 8/2021, 19 April 2021

AustLII cyber law on the map
AustLII has announced the upcoming launch of the Cyber Law Map, an annotated guide to Australian cyber-related legislation and case law which is intended to be an evolving wiki categorising cyber law and case information. The non-commercial venture is to be launched on 25 March and will be freely available. More...

AHRC: Independent Review into Commonwealth Parliamentary Workplaces
The Commission will not be investigating nor making findings about individual allegations of bullying, sexual harassment or sexual assault as part of the Review. The Commission will report on its findings and recommendations in a report to be tabled in Parliament in November 2021. The Terms of Reference outline the scope of the Review in more detail. More...

LSC: Regulation of litigation funding schemes
The Legal Services Council has amended the Legal Profession Uniform General Rules 2015 with effect from 22 August 2020 so the prohibitions in s 258(1) and (3) of the Legal Profession Uniform Law do not apply in relation to litigation funding schemes now regulated as managed investment schemes. The new rule will operate for 12 months to allow for consultation See the Legal Services Council website.


Commonwealth and Victorian Courts' COVID updates - Supreme Court of Victoria
From 6 April 2021, civil trials involving the cross-examination of one or more witnesses may be conducted in Court subject to the availability of a courtroom and appropriate safeguards. Click here for more information.

Inquiry into the Use of Cannabis in Victoria - Have your say
The reporting date for this inquiry has been extended to 1 June 2021. Once the report is tabled in Parliament, an electronic copy will be available for download from the Report page.

Inquiry into Management of Child Sex Offender Information - Have your say
The reporting date for this inquiry has been extended to 30 August 2021. Once the report is tabled in Parliament, an electronic copy will be available for download from the Report page.

Inquiry into Victoria's Criminal Justice System - Have your say
The Legislative Council Legal and Social Issues Committee is accepting submissions to its Inquiry into Victoria's criminal justice system. Submissions close on 1 September 2021. More...

Published – articles, papers, reports

What's really at stake with vaccine passports
Elizabeth Renieris, Centre for International Governance Innovation: 05 April 2021
In this article, the author suggests that rather than thinking about vaccine passports as temporary and isolated public health-related measures, we should view them as just one example of how the pandemic is accelerating the rollout of digital identity infrastructure across the world. More...

Composition of Australian Parliaments by party and gender: A quick guide
Anna Hough
Politics & Public Administration Section, APH: 16 April 2021
This quick guide contains the most recent tables showing the composition of Australian parliaments by party and gender (see Tables 1 and 2 below). It takes into account changes to the Commonwealth and state/territory parliaments since the last update was published on 2 December 2020. More...

Women, Peace and Security 2021-2031 plan
Australian Government: released 12 April 2021
The new National Action Plan identified four outcomes that would support coordinated action across Government. More...



Statutory Rules as made

No. 26/2021 Service Victoria Act 2018Service Victoria (Transfer of Worker Screening Functions)
30/03/2021 – 6 Transferred customer service functions; 7 Transferred identity verification functions
8 Secrecy provisions

No 28/2021 County Court (Chapter I Circuit Fees, Expenses and Allowances Amendment) Rules 2021
01/04/2021 – Witnesses' expenses and interpreters' allowances


Police and Emergency Legislation Amendment Act 2020 (Vic)
Date of commencement: 7 April 2021 - ections 3 and 4 of this Act came into operation on 7 April 2021 (SG152 30.03.2021) Part 3—Amendment of Crimes Part 4—Amendment of Family Violence Protection Act2008
Act Number: 29/2020

Gender Equality Act 2020 (Vic)
Date of commencement: 31 March 2021 - Parts 1 to 8 of this Act came in by forced commencement on 31 March 2021 s.2(3) Act Number: 5/2020

Spent Convictions Act 2021 (Vic)
Act Number: 13/2021 Date of assent: 30 March 2021

Victorian legislation can be accessed here

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.