Law Society NT Logo
Law Society NT Logo

Events Calendar

Breakfast Seminar with The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG
Wednesday 09 August 2017, 07:45am - 08:45pm

‘The Ongoing Importance of Dissent in the High Court of Australia’ 

Join us for this ‘not to be missed’ breakfast seminar by The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG on the value of dissent in the evolution and facilitation of change in the High Court of Australia.

Venue: Neptuna & Mavie Room, The Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront
Cost: $99 incl GST includes a light breakfast
Level: Suitable for all levels of legal practice

Register Now!



Since the beginning of the High Court of Australia in 1903 the course of the law has been regularly influenced, generally beneficially, by the publication of minority or dissenting opinions. The repeated dissents of Justice Isaacs on the approach to the interpretation of the powers granted to the Federal Parliament is a well-known illustration. Eventually, in the Engineers Case (1921) his opinion prevailed and has done so ever since. Other instances include the dissent of Justice Murphy over the right to publicly funded legal representation that eventually produced the ruling in Dietrich v The Queen (1992). Recently, there have been notable dissents, including by Gageler J on the principles of joint criminal responsibility and by Gordon J on the constitutional question of when outsourced immigration detention may turn into punishment that can only be imposed by a Chapter III court. Plaintiff M 68/2015v Minister (2016) 90 ALJR 297. Yet on other occasions, where dissent might have been expected, such as the immunity of advocates from liability in negligence, it has not been forthcoming on the principal issue: Attwells v Jackson (2017) 91 ALJR 508. The reasons for dissenting opinions will be explained and described.


Presenter: The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG

Michael Kirby is an international jurist, educator and former judge. He served as a Deputy President of the Australian Conciliation and Arbitration Commission (1975-83); Chairman of the Australian Law Reform Commission (1975-84); Judge of the Federal Court of Australia (1983-84); President of the New South Wales Court of Appeal (1984-96); President of the Court of Appeal of Solomon Islands (1995-96) and Justice of the High Court of Australia (1996-2009).


Earn 1 CPD point in Professional Skills in Legal Practice (CC).

Legalsuper RGB 72dpi small


Office Location

Level 3, 9 Cavenagh Street
Darwin NT 0800

Mailing Address

GPO Box 2388
Darwin NT 0801


Phone: 08 8981 5104
Fax: 08 8941 1623