this product is unavailable for purchase using a firm account, please log in with a personal account to make this purchase.

2020/21 Membership Year

Your membership is due for renewal by 30 June 2020. 

Renew Now
Select from any of the filters or enter a search term

From the president: From bushfires to COVID-19

From the president: From bushfires to COVID-19

By Sam Pandya

COVID-19 Opinions 


The LIV aims to ensure members are fully updated as the legal profession adapts to changing circumstances.

Victoria’s challenging start to 2020 with unprecedented bushfires has intensified with the dramatic and rapidly evolving measures to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The social and economic impacts will be profound and are still unfolding. At this time of uncertainty, I’m grateful for the resilience and collaboration of the Victorian legal profession and for the opportunity to assist our practitioners to navigate this crisis, its disruptions to our working and personal lives and the period of recovery once the situation improves.

With the urgent need to prioritise public health, federal and state governments’ social distancing measures have resulted in significant and sudden changes to the operation of the legal system and more generally, and have necessitated agility to adapt to these measures. The LIV has been liaising closely with government and the rest of the legal community, including the courts, government departments and regulators, to ensure we are regularly and fully updated and informed of the changes they are making to their operations so we can immediately share this information with members through our website, social media and other communications. We have also advocated strongly on behalf of the profession where there have been opportunities to influence improvements to the way courts, departments and others are delivering their services and modifying their processes during this time.

As we have all learned through this crisis, substantial modifications to the way we work, including remote and web-based delivery of services and support over such a short timeframe require both urgent and sustained efforts and can take a cumulative toll on us. I have been speaking with many members about the challenges they are facing with their practices and employees in the face of these abrupt restrictions to normal operations. We need to ensure our approach to this crisis is sustainable over many months, and in the face of this uncertainty and personal and professional anxiety and change, our mental wellbeing is just as important as maintaining our physical health (see Health and wellbeing, p87). I remind members that your LIV membership allows you access to confidential counselling sessions through our EAP member assistance program and I encourage you all to consider using this service if and when needed. Our feedback from members who have accessed this program is consistently positive.

I am proud of the hard work of staff at the LIV to ensure that the organisation is able to continue to function while safeguarding the health and safety of members, staff and the community. Members will have noticed the COVID-19 measures have had an enormous impact on many of the LIV’s activities, including the delivery of CPD, organised events, library services, member services, our bookshop LawBooks, mediation spaces and meeting room hire. 

LIV staff have worked tirelessly to minimise the impact on members and to ensure you are able to continue to access as many services as possible remotely. For example, CPD is being delivered by webinar and many forms of assistance and guidance are provided by telephone, email or via our website. For those who have not yet explored our dedicated one-stop COVID-19 page on our website (, we have many useful resources such as links to court updates, contingency planning resources and remote working policies and checklists to assist members (see News, p19).

As a profession, we should remember that we are all grappling with this new environment together and I encourage members to contact the LIV if you have specific questions, if there are issues on which we can advocate on your behalf and on behalf of other members experiencing similar concerns or challenges, or if there are further ways you believe we can improve our services to better support you. We want you to feel part of our LIV family and we are here with you every step of the way during this crisis and beyond. Our profession will undoubtedly emerge from this crisis stronger, more technologically agile and more confident in our abilities to adapt to changing circumstances while continuing to serve our communities and clients effectively. ■

Sam Pandya

Views expressed on (Website) are not necessarily endorsed by the Law Institute of Victoria Ltd (LIV).

The information, including statements, opinions, documents and materials contained on the Website (Website Content) is for general information purposes only. The Website Content does not take into account your specific needs, objectives or circumstances, and it is not legal advice or services. Any reliance you place on the Website Content is at your own risk.

To the maximum extent permitted by law, the LIV excludes all liability for any loss or damage of any kind (including special, indirect or consequential loss and including loss of business profits) arising out of or in connection with the Website Content and the use or performance of the Website except to the extent that the loss or damage is directly caused by the LIV’s fraud or wilful misconduct.

Be the first to comment