Hearsay ... the Journal of the Bar Association of Queensland
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High Court Preserves, But Modifies, Advocates’ Immunity Print E-mail

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On 4 May 2016, the High Court handed down its decision in Attwells v Jackson Lalic Lawyers Pty Limited [2016] HCA 16.

There were two main issues on the appeal. The first was whether the advocate's immunity from suit extends to negligent advice which leads to an agreed settlement. The second was whether the Court should reconsider its previous decisions on the advocate's immunity.

The Court unanimously declined to reconsider its previous decisions on the advocate's immunity, but held, by majority (French CJ, Kiefel, Bell, Gageler and Keane JJ; Nettle and Gordon JJ dissenting), that the immunity does not extend to negligent advice which leads to an agreed settlement.

A detailed analysis of this important decision will be included in the next edition of Hearsay.

The Court's decision, as well as links to the transcript of the hearing and the parties' submissions, can be found here.

Josh Underwood


Adrian Duffy
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