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LIV update

Every Issue

Cite as: Jan/Feb 2015 89 (1/2) LIJ, p.86

LIV Council update

The LIV Council meets each month to decide issues of importance to members, the legal profession and the community.

At the 18 December meeting, LIV Council farewelled departing councillors past-president Reynah Tang, Tracey Smail and Mark Woods, who retires after a record 23 years. Council identified key focus points, including legal aid funding review, for future lobbying of the new state government, discussed recent developments in the introduction of legal profession uniform laws (LPUL), due to be implemented in Victoria and NSW on 1 July, and endorsed the LIV’s professional development strategy for 2015-2017.

Professional development strategy

The strategy seeks to position the LIV as the leader in the area of professional development for Victorian legal practitioners by enhancing online and peer-to-peer learning opportunities. The LIV’s approach to PD is underpinned by the LIV’s critical role in partnering with its members throughout their professional lives.

LPUL

On 28 November, 2014 the Legal Services Council (LSC) released draft rules and admission rules for public consultation. The LIV sought feedback and commentary from members on the uniform costs disclosure form for law practices, a critical component of the draft general rules. The form has been a significant issue in NSW and Victoria, in particular whether the form is fit for purpose and whether it meets the expectations of s174 of the Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Act 2014. After substantial debate, Council resolved to recommend to NSW and the LCA a simplified disclosure form developed by the LIV Cost Lawyers Committee.

Council also noted progress on LIV submissions on draft trust accounting rules and admission rules. A formal submission on proposed health assessment powers of the Board of Examiners will be made to the LSC.

LCA board

Council noted the retirement of Reynah Tang from LIV practitioner representative director on the Law Council of Australia (LCA) board. It endorsed the appointment of immediate-past president Geoff Bowyer in that position for 2015, in accordance with the Council resolution of 19 December 2013.

LIV lobbying priorities

Council noted the LIV’s high level analysis conducted on the Victorian ALP 2014 election platform and the subsequent advocacy undertaken. The 2014 Call to Parties document was published in the August LIJ to which major parties responded in the September LIJ . IV polices that align with the new government were identified on the following issues:

  • Legal aid review
  • Independent and well-resourced review of the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities
  • Broadening IBAC’s jurisdiction
  • Legislating for advance care directives
  • Royal Commission into Family Violence Prevention.

It was also noted that LIV president Katie Miller and CEO Nerida Wallace have met with Attorney-General Martin Pakula in support of a review of legal aid.

Annual reports ratified

Annual reports ratified were LIV Accredited Specialisation Board Annual Report 2014, Accident Compensation Committee (ACC) Annual Report 2014, Future Focus Portfolio 2014 Annual Report, Joint LIV/AMA/VicBar Medico-Legal Standing Committee Annual Report 2014, and Diversity Taskforce and LIVout Annual Report 2014.

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