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Law Council of Australia – Purpose, people and polices

Law Council of Australia – Purpose, people and polices

By Steven Sapountsis


The recent annual general meeting and directors’ meeting of the Law Council of Australia (LCA) has encouraged me to write something to help our members better understand the LCA. It is, to my mind, undoubted that Australian lawyers need a national representative body as well as state professional associations. I suggest that where there is an Attorney-General, there is need for a lawyers’ professional association. Interestingly, it was the LIV that was the earliest proponent of a national body, although its initial efforts to establish such a body were not successful. The composition of the national body and its precise remit will always be the subject of differing but reasonably held opinions, and Australian history is replete with examples of the travails that face a federated body covering a huge geographic area. The Law Council of Australia speaks on issues of national and international importance, federal law and the operation of federal courts and tribunals. The LIV is one of 17 constituent bodies of the LCA, and pays a fee to the LCA based on the number of its members. The Executive of the LCA conducts the business of the LCA between directors’ meetings, and it is through and from the Executive that the LCA president is chosen.

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