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With over 158,000 print titles in our collection, the Supreme Court Library provides the most comprehensive range of legal resources in Queensland to the judiciary, legal profession and members of the public with matters before the Courts.

Each week, a selection of important titles recently added to the collection are reviewed by members of the level 16 Quay Central chambers. A full list of new titles is available online via our catalogue, with copies also available for perusal at the Brisbane Reference Desk.

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New Titles

  • Mann’s Annotated Insurance Contracts Act

    Peter Mann, Mann’s Annotated Insurance Contracts Act (Thomson Reuters, 6th ed, 2014)

    21 November 2014
    This text provides a convenient annotated consolidation of the Insurance Contracts Act 1984 and the Insurance Contracts Regulations 1985, which are current to 28 June 2014. It has been 2 years since the publication of the last edition and the sixth edition takes into account the substantial amendments brought about as a consequence of The Personal Liability for Corporate Fault Reform Act 2012 and the Insurance Contracts Amendment Act 2013. Section 54 of the Insurance Contracts Act concerning the circumstances in which an insurer may not refuse to pay claims has continued to be the subject of most judicial attention. The text is a convenient and comprehensive resource for practitioners.

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  • Further Weird Cases

    Gary Slapper, Further Weird Cases (Wildy, Simmonds & Hill Publishing, 2014)

    14 November 2014
    Further Weird Cases is the third book Slapper has produced recounting the unusual and bizarre examples of human nature found in the world of litigation. Some anecdotes are comedic whereas others are cringe worthy. Slapper has again dug into history for inspiraton, but most of the cases arise from the last few years. There are life lessons for the professional appearing before the Courts. For example, boredom derived from a tedious case is best suffered in silence without any fidgeting. Lord Birkett noted "I do not object to people looking at their watches when I am speaking. But I strongly object when they start shaking them to make certain they are still working". The style is anecdotal and easy to read. The externalization of responsibility found in the man from Wisconsin who sued a television company for making his wife obese and transforming his children into "lazy channel surfers". Alternatively, the contrast between seeking to lead a secret life and using social media where a man was prosecuted for bigamy after Facebook recommended that each of his wives should become friends.

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  • The Mediator’s Handbook – Skills and Strategies for Practitioners

    Ruth Charlton and Micheline Dewdney, The Mediator’s Handbook – Skills and Strategies for Practitioners (Thomson Reuters, 3rd ed, 2014)

    31 October 2014
    The third edition of this highly useful text balances mediation theory with practical guidance. All the elements of mediation are touched on, such as the different processes, preparation, appropriate mediator skills and mediation techniques. This edition includes new chapters on family dispute resolution, the intake process, formulating questions, and facilitating direct communication.

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  • Alan Hyam, The Law Affecting Valuation of Land in Australia (The Federation Press, 5th ed, 2014)

    31 October 2014
    The law affecting the valuation of land becomes relevant in a number of contexts. This is particularly so when land value is one of the criteria for the imposition of a State or Commonwealth tax or where rating or compulsory acquisition legislation is considered. As one would expect, Hyam provides a meticulous analysis of the legal nature of “land” and “value”. Specific attention is paid to particular types of property such as rural lands, mines and mineral bearing lands, and the role of goodwill. Hyam’s text remains a leading work in this area.

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  • Security of Payment in the Australian Building and Construction Industry

    Marcus S. Jacobs, Security of Payment in the Australian Building and Construction Industry (Thomson Reuters, 5th ed, 2014)

    10 October 2014
    Marcus Jacobs QC has again produced a comprehensive exposition of the law relating to security of payments in the 5th edition of this work. The work comprises two broad sections: commentary and legislation. By reference to the New South Wales Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act 1999, the commentary explains the judicial treatment of the various sections in the Act. There is also commentary for similar provisions found in the other security of payments legislation in Australia. The 5th edition contains a useful comparative table of sections across all jurisdictions. The legislation part of the text is a convenient collection of the explanatory note, the second reading speech, and the statute and its regulations for each Australian jurisdiction. The text was published on the cusp of the enactment of the Building and Construction Industry Payments Amendment Act 2014 (Qld) and, as such, includes a copy of the Bill, but not the Act. Otherwise, the text is a convenient and up to date resource.

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  • Excursions in the Law

    Peter Heerey, Excursions in the Law (The Federation Press, 2014)

    3 October 2014
    Peter Heerey is a former Judge of the Federal Court of Australia. This is an interesting and entertaining collection of short pieces drawn from fact and fiction. The book is a cornucopia of different works ranging from serious analysis to humorous comments, poems, and recollections. Heerey was born and educated in Tasmania and he commences the book on a more serious note with a profile of Tasmanian politician Andrew Inglis Clark as one of the architects of the Australian constitution. A brief history of the first one hundred years of the Tasmanian Supreme Court follows. Heerey then draws on his more than forty years in the law as either a barrister or a judge and provides a number of papers under the heading “The Justice Business”. This includes talks that Heerey has given to various bodies during the course of his career, such as the always reflective and insightful talks he has given to readers commencing at the Bar. There is an interesting article entitled “The Judicial Herd: seduced by suave glittering phrases?”, which offers a number of opinions in relation to the way Courts of Appeal function, in particular a criticism of the “now fashionable judicial conference” as well as the practice of circulating draft judgments. There are short, biographical pieces on Owen Dixon and Abraham Lincoln and a number of witty rhyming poems including “The Ballad of Briginshaw”. In a section called “In Other Lands” Heerey offers personal glimpses of his various experiences abroad such as a Privy Council Appeal and his time as an acting judge in Vanuatu. Peter Heerey writes in a clear pithy style and admits to being informed of Blaise Pascal’s declaration from 1657: “Je n'ai fait celle-ci plus longue que parce que je n'ai pas eu le loisir de la faire plus courte”. It is wise counsel for all lawyers. Heerey’s book is an enjoyable read that demonstrates his wide range of abilities as a wordsmith and his love of the English language.

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  • Health Law in Australia

    Ben White, Fiona McDonald and Lindy Willmott, Health Law in Australia (Thomson Reuters, 2nd ed, 2014)

    3 October 2014
    This book introduces the reader to the field of health law and considers the general principles of health law: consent (for children and adults with impaired decision making capacity), negligence, and confidentiality and privacy. The authors analyse the legal issues concerning the beginning of life and the examination of assisted reproductive technology, abortion and surrogacy. The law concerning end of life is looked at, such as euthanasia, and the withholding and withdrawing of life sustaining medical treatment. It is a work of the Australian Centre for Health Law Research, based at the Queensland University of Technology.

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  • Noel Preston, Understanding Ethics (The Federation Press, 4th ed, 2014)

    3 October 2014
    Former United States Supreme Court Chief Justice Earle Warren said, “The law floats on a sea of ethics”. Throughout Preston’s book, he explains where the law and ethics interface. Topically, “the war on terror” raises the ethical question of when is it appropriate for one nation to interfere for moral purposes in the affairs of another nation? Preston’s book is an introduction to ethics covering a wide range of ethical conundrums. There are useful analyses of the ethics of honesty, sex and love, public responsibility, war and terrorism, and environmental issues. Preston has produced a highly readable text that is thought provoking and accessible.

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  • Murray Gleeson - The Smiler

    Michael Pelly, Murray Gleeson - The Smiler (The Federation Press, 2014)

    26 September 2014
    It was with great foresight that the grandfather of 4-year-old Murray Gleeson entreated the boy to be like Bill Dovey QC rather than “be the Pope”. Apart from a powerful suggestion, that may have been lost on one so young, what were the forces that shaped Murray Gleeson to become Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia? Pelly is cursory in his exploration of Gleeson’s early years and the book really focuses on his life at university and his ascension through the “galaxy of talent” to be the Chief Justice of the High Court. Pelly gives some insight into the young Murray Gleeson who would share time with his father visiting livestock sales, listening to the horse races, and boxing fights on the radio. Gleeson was bookish from an early age with his mother describing him as “a very serious boy”. This informs the tone of this biography and explains a character that sidelined his sense of humor in favor of strict measure, rigor, hard work, and austerity. A person who is said to have made a bereavement counselor look happy. It will come as no surprise to readers that Murray Gleeson had a practice in tax law. Pelly’s book contains much analysis of the forces that changed the law and the preeminent role that Murray Gleeson played in those changes. It is a biography about a lawyer written for lawyers.

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  • Uniform Evidence Law

    Stephen Odgers, Uniform Evidence Law (Thomson Reuters, 11th ed, 2014)

    26 September 2014
    The uniform evidence laws specifically considered by this text are the Evidence Acts of the Commonwealth, New South Wales and Victoria. Whilst largely identical there are a number of points of difference in each jurisdiction. There are helpful tables that identify the extent to which the Tasmanian Evidence Act 2001, the ACT Evidence Act 2011, and the Northern Territory Evidence (National Uniform Legislation) Act 2011 correspond with the Evidence Act 1995 (Cth). As is to be expected, Odgers has meticulously kept up to date with recent developments in the law of evidence. For example, recent analysis in Eire Contractors Pty Ltd v O’Brien [2012] NSWCA 400 that explores the relationship between s. 56 and s.136 in the context of a document being tendered “only against” one of two defendants in civil proceedings. Also the analysis in Gedeon v R (2013) 280 FLR 275 that further explains s. 128 concerning the privilege against self-incrimination in other proceedings and s. 138 in relation to the discretion to exclude improperly or illegally obtained evidence. The annotated legislation format of this text makes it a practical resource and it is one of the leading texts dealing with uniform evidence law in Australia.

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