What’s the difference between apprehended bias and just being rude? Recent judgments from the Supreme Court of Victoria and the Family Court

In the Anglo-Australian system of law, it is axiomatic that a judicial or administrative decision must ordinarily be made by a neutral decision maker. That is, a decision must be made by someone who is not, and who does not appear to be, biased against any party whose interests are liable to be affected by … Continue reading What’s the difference between apprehended bias and just being rude? Recent judgments from the Supreme Court of Victoria and the Family Court

Subjective and objective jurisdictional facts in habeas corpus proceedings: Chattaway v Minister for Health and Wellbeing

A few weeks ago now – time flies when you're binge watching The Wire – a Full Court of the Supreme Court of South Australia handed down judgment in Chattaway v Minister for Health and Wellbeing. While the judgment does not establish any new principle, it is interesting for two reasons. First, it adds to a … Continue reading Subjective and objective jurisdictional facts in habeas corpus proceedings: Chattaway v Minister for Health and Wellbeing

I’m not a geography whizz, but Sudan and South Sudan are definitely two different countries: DQM18 v Minister for Home Affairs

As this meme – posted by the Kenyan-American actor/tangerine-skinned space pirate Lupita Nyongo'o – illustrates, Africa is a vast continent that comprises 54 countries. Within those 54 countries, there are approximately 1.3 billion people, who speak somewhere in the vicinity of two thousand different languages. Two of Africa's 54 distinct nations are the Republic of the Sudan and the Republic of South Sudan. While … Continue reading I’m not a geography whizz, but Sudan and South Sudan are definitely two different countries: DQM18 v Minister for Home Affairs

Some interesting dicta from the Victorian Court of Appeal on ‘Harman’ obligations in family law proceedings

A few days ago, the Victorian Court of Appeal handed down judgment in Hazell-Wright v 32 Domain Pty Ltd. The Court refused leave to appeal on the grounds that the one genuinely arguable issue raised by the applicant's application for leave to appeal — whether the trial judge had erred by refusing to grant the applicant … Continue reading Some interesting dicta from the Victorian Court of Appeal on ‘Harman’ obligations in family law proceedings

The ever-expanding boundaries of the irrationality ground of judicial review (quarantine length post)

About two weeks (or seven binge-watched seasons of 30 Rock, or an amount of time spent playing Assassin's Creed that I'd rather not calculate and am not particularly proud of) ago, a Full Court of the Federal Court handed down judgment in BFH16 v Minister for Home Affairs, holding (by a 2-1 majority) that the … Continue reading The ever-expanding boundaries of the irrationality ground of judicial review (quarantine length post)

What does it mean for an administrative decision maker to ‘consider’ the case put before it?

It is axiomatic that an administrative decision maker must generally 'consider' the case put before it by a person whose interests are liable to be affected by its decision. As I noted in a previous post, this obligation can be considered to arise from the rules of procedural fairness, from the obligation to take into … Continue reading What does it mean for an administrative decision maker to ‘consider’ the case put before it?

Irrationality, uninformed speculation and lack of probative evidence: an important new judgment from the Federal Court

On 16 August 2019, a Full Court of the Federal Court handed down judgment in Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection v Splendido. The case is important because it builds on existing Federal Court jurisprudence on what may variously be described as the 'irrationality' and 'no evidence' ground(s) of judicial review. The two judgments given … Continue reading Irrationality, uninformed speculation and lack of probative evidence: an important new judgment from the Federal Court

The rule in Browne v Dunn in proceedings before an administrative review tribunal

In a recent judgment in Twentyman v Secretary, Department of Social Services, Griffiths J refused an application for leave to appeal out of time from an earlier judgment of Wigney J dismissing the applicant's appeal on a question of law from a decision of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. The judgment does not say anything new about … Continue reading The rule in Browne v Dunn in proceedings before an administrative review tribunal

Comparative constitutional law: the Supreme Court case about State sovereign immunity that’s really about something else entirely

A little while ago now, on 13 May 2019, the Supreme Court of the United States handed down judgment in Franchise Tax Board of California v Hyatt. The judgment, comprising a majority opinion authored on behalf of the Court's conservative wing by Thomas J and a dissent authored on behalf of the liberal wing by Breyer J, … Continue reading Comparative constitutional law: the Supreme Court case about State sovereign immunity that’s really about something else entirely