The Laws of Australia Update 366
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples 1.3 “Native Title Law”
Updated by Paul Theodore Babie, Professor, Theory and Law of Property, Adelaide Law School, University of Adelaide
The major focus of this Subtitle is on examining native title at common law, native title legislation and land rights legislation (including other forms of legislative regulation) in each Australian jurisdiction. This update discusses the significance of a spiritual connection with the land. Fortescue Metals Group v Warrie  FCAFC 177 addressed the multiple pathways to connection, including birth, ritual status and common ancestry.
Key Cases: Love v Commonwealth  HCA 3; Fortescue Metals Group v Warrie  FCAFC 177; Yaegl People #2 v Attorney General (NSW)  FCA 993; Yilka Native Title Claimants v Western Australia (No 5)  FCA 752.
Key Legislation: Native Title Act 1993 (Cth).
Business Organisations 4.1 “Company Formation”
Updated by Amanda Carruthers, Barrister, Victorian Bar
This Subtitle describes the nature of a registered company and is concerned with law relevant to its formation. This updates references the Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Act 2014 (Vic), where legal practitioners are able to incorporate an unlimited proprietary company where the object of the company was confined to the practice of law.
Key Legislation: Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Act 2014 (Vic).
Contracts: Specific 8.4 “Sale of Goods”
Updated by Dr Ben McEniery, Barrister-at-Law, Deane Chambers
This Subtitle focuses on the rights and obligations imposed by the Sale of Goods legislation and, where it differs, the Australian Consumer Law, on buyers and sellers engaged in transactions for the sale of goods. This update discusses terms of a consumer contract or small business contract that may be unfair and thereby void under the Australian Consumer Law.
Key Legislation: Treasury Laws Amendment (Acquisition as Consumer – Financial Thresholds) Regulations 2020 (Cth); Australian Consumer Law; Australian Consume Law and Fair Trading Act 2012 (Vic).
Criminal Procedure 11.5 “Committal Proceedings”
Updated by Professor Mirko Bagaric, Professor and Dean of Law, Swinburne University of Technology
This Subtitle outlines the functions and various procedures involved in the conduct of committal proceedings. This update discusses the reforms made by the Justice Legislation Amendment (Committals and Guilty Pleas) Act 2017 (NSW), which includes that a magistrate is no longer required to make a decision about the sufficiency of evidence before committal with their role confined to managing committal proceedings from the time a defendant is charged until he or she is committed for trial or sentence.
Key Legislation: Justice Legislation Amendment (Committals and Guilty Pleas) Act 2017 (NSW).
Environment and Natural Resources 14.1 “General Principles: Basic Concepts”
Updated by Dr Gerry Bates, Specialist in Environmental Law and Policy
This Subtitle deals with the general principles and basic concepts surrounding environmental litigation. This update includes discussion on appeals on the merits against planning and environment decisions which are available to various specialist tribunals and courts. The Land and Environment Court and the Northern Territory Civil and Administrative Tribunal are also extensively featured.
Key Legislation: Landscape South Australia Act 2019 (SA); Planning Act 2016 (Qld); Planning, Development and Infrastructure Act 2016 (SA); Land and Environment Court Act 1979 (NSW).
Environment and Natural Resources 14.2 “Planning: Central and Regional”
Updated by Joseph Claude Veneziano, Associate Editor, Local Government & Environmental Reports of Australia
This Subtitle extracts organisational and operational categories and principles of central and regional planning in land use planning laws. This update discusses the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Act 2016 (SA) and the State Planning Commission, as well as the Planning Act 2016 (Qld) and the Tasmanian Planning Commission.
Key Legislation: Planning Act 2016 (Qld); Planning, Development and Infrastructure Act 2016 (SA).
Family Law 17.8 “International Child Abduction”
Updated by Aisling Clifford, Special Counsel and Accredited Specialist in Family Law, Coote Family Lawyers
This Subtitle states the law that applies to international child abductions under the common law and the Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (International Child Abduction Convention) (1980) 1343 UNTS 89; 19 ILM 1501;  ATS 2. This update discusses the International Child Abduction Convention and its status in Australia, as well as amendments to the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) in relation to the care, welfare or development of a child. Also discussed is “repudiatory retention”, which occurs when a retaining parent forms the subjective intention to not return the child to the state of habitual residence at the expiration of the period which was agreed between the parties.
Key Cases: Handbury & State Central Authority & Anor (2020) FLC 93-937.
Key Legislation: Family Law Act 1975 (Cth).
Professional Liability 27.9 “Government Authorities”
Updated by Christoph Liedermann, Barrister, Chalfont Chambers
This Subtitle deals with those aspects of the liability of government authorities which differ from the liability of other legal persons. This update discusses statutes which define the functions of government authorities containing provisions which provide protection from liability to the person or body exercising the powers conferred by the statute.
Key Legislation: Local Government Act 2020 (Vic).
Update 367 currently scheduled updates (subject to change):
- Bankruptcy 3.8 “Effects of Bankruptcy”
- Communications 6.1 “Civil Defamation”
- Environment and Natural Resources 14.6 “Environmental Harm: Pollution Control and Hazardous Substances”
- Intellectual Property 23.1 “Copyright” Chs 1–3