LawRight Newsletter - July 2022 - Red Wine for Justice

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Thank you for registering to attend Red Wine for Justice on July 29, 2022. This email has some important logistic notes as well as updates on the event. We still have some tickets so please consider inviting a colleague or friend today for a guaranteed great night. Tickets available here​​​​​​​.

Please notify us about any allergies

Our hosts are catering for a range of dietary preferences but if you have a specific food allergy we should know about, please advise us at by COB Wednesday 20 July.

Covid safety

The venue is well-ventilated with large outdoor spaces and we’ve made some changes to the event to make it covid-safe, such as how we are serving food and drinks. Please do not attend if you have any symptoms. We are happy to provide a refund if you’re unwell. Our hosts Herbert Smith Freehills have also asked us to circulate their covid message:

To ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of our people and guests, we will require all attendees at this event to be double vaccinated against Covid-19. Please do not attend this event if you have been identified as a close contact or high risk contact to a positive Covid-19 case in the last 7 days. We hope you feel comfortable to join us for this event and ask that you please ensure you are familiar with our Covid-19-Meetings and Events disclaimer.

We’ve raided the cellar..

All the donated wine is now out of the cellar and ready to be enjoyed by you on the night or won by you at auction. Thanks to our generous donors, there are 50 lots to choose from, at either the silent or main auction. Auction booklets will be available on the night but we will continue to publish highlights until the event.

We have your name on the door list

All registrations and changes for tickets to the event have been recorded and will be on the door list without the need for printed tickets. You simply need to attend and be checked in.

Our latest newsletter is available here, and includes auction highlights and what to look forward to on the night, including:

  • Bid for a picnic for eight, hosted by the Hon Roslyn Atkinson AO and the Hon Ann Lyons
  • Bid for a high tea for five, hosted by the Hon Margaret McMurdo AC and the Hon Margaret White AO
  • Enjoy great conversations,  fine wines for drinking and gourmet winter food
  • Ponder the musings of His Honour, Justice Peter Applegarth, our special guest speaker
  • Join the fray at the wine auction
  • Delight guests at your next celebration with your silent auction success – lots include 6 bottles of 2000 Kilikanoon Clare Valley Oracle Shiraz, or a stunning 6 bottles of 2016 E.Guigal Hermitage Rouge (with a further 6 bottles available in the main auction)

Register now at

Copyright © 2022 LawRight, All rights reserved.

LawRight Newsletter - July 2022

We’re looking for new premises

The Queensland Law Society has been our landlord since July 2017 but the lease has now ended and we are looking for new premises near the CBD. If you can assist our search in any way, please contact Joint Director for our rental specifications.

Magistrates Court service to pause

Regrettably, we have paused our service to self-represented litigants in the Magistrates Court, due to insufficient funds.

LawRight uses your donations to deliver innovative services that are not government-funded but respond to critical access to justice needs. Three such services are our Financial Counselling service, a Health Justice Partnership to vulnerable young adults at the Mater Young Adults Health Centre and our pilot self-representation service to the Magistrates Court.

The Magistrates Court service commenced in July 2021 and assisted 86 clients with over 220 advice sessions or task assistance to progress their matters, resolve their disputes, and navigate their proceedings more effectively.  Proceedings in this jurisdiction can be just as legally complex as they are in the higher courts. Litigants still face the potentially ruinous impact of adverse decisions, the potential for costs orders for failing to understand process and procedures, and the stress and difficulty involved in navigating our legal system. However, the most vulnerable litigants in this court don’t have access to legal advice or representation for their civil law matters.

Despite this need we decided to pause the Magistrates Court service at the end of June, due to insufficient funds. We will continue to assist existing clients where possible but will not intake new clients until we review this decision in January 2023.

Increasing success with a financial counsellor

When women exit prison, they can face a barrage of debts that have grown in complexity during their incarceration and impact their capacity to build a stable future. Working with our lawyers, our financial counsellor helped a young parolee secure the waiver of >$20,000 debt and prevent repossession of her car by resolving an additional >$20,000 loan, which infringed responsible lending practices. The refund we secured helped the young woman as she re-integrated into society.

Each of our unfunded services relies on your donations with annual operational costs of >$100,000 per service. Your support always counts!

Give with pleasure!

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Red Wine for Justice is a wonderful opportunity to support LawRight and have fun in the process.  You can still register for yourself and your friends and start planning your version of pleasure. Will you…
  • Bid for a picnic for eight, hosted by the Hon Roslyn Atkinson AO and the Hon Ann Lyons?
  • Bid for a high tea for five, hosted by the Hon Margaret McMurdo AC and the Hon Margaret White AO?
  • Enjoy great conversations,  fine wines for drinking and gourmet winter food?
  • Ponder the musings of His Honour, Justice Peter Applegarth, our special guest speaker?
  • Join the fray at the wine auction?
  • Delight guests at your next celebration with your silent auction success – lots include 6 bottles of 2000 Kilikanoon Clare Valley Oracle Shiraz, or a stunning 6 bottles of 2016 E.Guigal Hermitage Rouge (with a further 6 bottles available in the main auction)
  • All of the above?

Copyright © 2022 LawRight, All rights reserved.

LawRight Newsletter - June 2022 - Red Wine for Justice


Celebrate pro bono winter style

Join us for Red Wine for Justice on Friday 29 July, starting at 6pm. Only $80 to enjoy fabulous drinking wines (highlights below), winter feasting, the drama of the wine auction and His Honour Justice Peter Applegarth as our wonderful guest speaker.

Register for Red Wine Justice here


Legal literacy training for community workers

233 staff from 75 health and community organisations registered for LawRight’s Caseworker Training event, held over three days in early June.  People experiencing crisis and vulnerability struggle to recognise their legal needs and navigate complex systems. This free training increases the capacity of frontline workers to identify civil legal issues experienced by their clients, support and refer them for help. This was the tenth event LawRight has coordinated and the first held on-line, enabling workers from around Queensland to attend. Up to 50 people attended each of the 12 sessions on topics such as Domestic Violence Orders, consumer and credit disputes and support for crime victims. Lawyers from FisherDore, Maurice Blackburn, LAQ, Womens’ Legal Service, QAI, Tenants Qld and LawRight presented, together with advocates from Qld Youth Housing Coalition and Brisbane Emergency Response Outreach Service.

Copyright © 2022 LawRight, All rights reserved.

LawRight Newsletter - June - Barristers

Dear LawRight member barristers,

Thank you for your ongoing support of LawRight. It was a pleasure to see such strong support from the Bar at the Queensland Legal Walk and we also hope to see you soon at Red Wine for Justice (date to be confirmed very soon).

For the first time, we are offering auto-renewal of LawRight membership. If you renew your membership online, next year your membership fees will automatically be deducted, unless you opt out. We’ve answered some FAQs below, or feel free to contact us with other queries on (07) 3846 6317 or


renew now


Why move to automatic renewal?
This process will significantly reduce the administrative burden of membership renewals for LawRight and our members.When will the next payment happen?
Your next membership payment will be scheduled for 12 months from your first payment. At least 14 days before the payment is schedule, you will receive an email and have the opportunity to opt out.

How much is membership?
Your membership fee is calculated based on your years at the bar.

First year – $20
2-3 years – $100
4-5 years – $175
6+ years – $280

What payment method do you accept?
You can pay by credit card (including AMEX) or direct debit. If your details change in the next 12 months and the payment doesn’t go through, we’ll contact you to update your details.

Why be a LawRight member?
As one of our existing members, you may have directly impacted a vulnerable client through your pro bono work with LawRight, or have read our client stories, reports and submissions and want to support our strategic pro bono legal assistance. At her Welcome Ceremony, the newest member of the Supreme Court, Her Honour Melanie Hindman QC, referred to her pro bono work (including with LawRight) as one of the greatest achievements of her legal career.

More information is on the Barristers page on the LawRight website.

You’re making me use tech?
It’s barrister friendly! We tested it with the barristers on our management committee! Our learned friends Hamish Clift, Angela Rae and Andrew Crowe QC got through the process in a couple of seconds, so you can too!


renew now
Any questions?
Please give us a call on (07) 3846 6317 or email faithfully,
Sue Garlick and Linda Macpherson
LawRight Joint Directors

LawRight Newsletter - 27 May 2022 - Queensland Legal Walk 9


Thank you to our wonderful legal community

Thank you to everyone for joining us for the Queensland Legal Walk 2022. Together we raised $130,000.

Special thanks to the champion fundraisers:

Chambers: Level 27 Chambers > $17,000
Law firm: Clayton Utz > $11,000
Individual: Oliver Cook of Level 27 Chambers > $15,000
Law School:  Griffith Law School  > $1,000 and

We haven’t achieved our $200,000 target, which is the cost of delivering of our self-funded services. We’ll keep you updated but here’s some photos from a great morning.

QWLwrap up
Donations are still open at

LawRight Newsletter - 12 May 2022 - Queensland Legal Walk 8


Thank you to our wonderful legal community

Thank you to our wonderful legal community for supporting tomorrow’s Queensland Legal Walk. 900 walkers have registered and raised $110,000 so far.

We need $200,000 to continue operating our Magistrates Court and Financial Counsellor services for another year, so every donation helps.

Clayton Utz were 2021 Team fundraising champions. They note:

“The whole office gets behind this annual fundraising activity through sponsorship, firm-wide fundraising lunches, a Friday afternoon drinks trolley and a firm-wide raffle – with some very generous prize donations from Clayton Utz Partners and community donors (including City Winery, Bellezza Group, Jade Buddha, Australian Venue Co.).  Many of us are looking forward to walking on Tuesday morning in sunshine or rain!”

Level 27 Chambers are currently ahead as best barrister chambers. When encouraged to boast they responded:

“It’s not so much a question of competitiveness, most lawyers likely take pride in a job thoroughly and well done. Putting our skills towards supporting the wider community is no exception. We’ll leave the question whether we are the best prepared, best looking and most stylish to others, but if another chambers wishes to try and knock us off a perch, we’ll accept it as a challenge. Having recently completed a mountain marathon in Hobart, we look forward to seeing how many times Oliver Cook laps the rest of Chambers’ one loop.”

There are also trophies for best individual, law school and team spirit. We can’t wait to see where the flurry of late-minute donations takes the leader board, but it’s not too late to add your tax-deductible donation.

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Please give generously. Donate here

Walks begin at 7 am tomorrow in Brisbane, Cairns, Townsville, Mackay, Rockhampton, the Sunshine and Gold Coasts, and Toowoomba as well as smaller groups walking in their neighbourhoods.

Dress for wet weather and celebrate the resilience and power of pro bono.

LawRight Newsletter - 12 May 2022 - Queensland Legal Walk 7


When the glamour fades…

When the glamour fades…

Some financial products are marketed to young adults as the pathway to glamour but lead instead to vulnerable young people accumulating thousands of dollars of debt – impacting their capacity to sustain tenancies, support children or even buy food or medicine.

LawRight recently joined with Financial Counsellors Australia (FCA) to call for better regulation of financial products such as Afterpay and other Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) products.  Read the full story.  We consider the ASIC product intervention power is not sufficient to regulate BNPL as it does not appropriately and immediately respond to people in financial hardship or place clear guidelines on companies to lend responsibly and appropriately or to respond to hardship.
LawRight’s partnership for young adults at Brisbane Youth Service (BYS) integrates with our Financial Counsellor and frequently assists these young people.

A young client with multiple disabilities who met with us at BYS had accumulated $2000 of debts to three BNPL services. We resolved two of the debts but the final BNPL provider was unresponsive and could not be compelled due to the lack of protections that apply to other credit products. However, the advocacy and relationships of our Financial Counsellor resolved the debt. We were also able to meet with this provider to work together better next time.

Our client agrees with increased regulation and in response to our advocacy said: “a weight has been lifted and my confidence to move forward and be more financially secure has changed massively. The benefits to my mental health and wellbeing cannot be understated – it’s a completely different dynamic, it’s life changing, it feels very good to not have that weight anymore.”


Help keep our financial counsellor service open by generously donating

No glamour on Tuesday but plenty of guts?

Gumboots and umbrellas may be required at the Brisbane walk on Tuesday?
Whether you walk or not, please knock LawRight’s team from the top of the fundraising  leader board with your gutsy giving.

Thanks to everyone who has registered so far, with more still joining!
50 teams
900 walkers
50+ members of judiciary registered
10 chambers
25 firms

Queensland Legal Walk, Tuesday May 17 at 7am

LawRight Newsletter - 10 May 2022 - Queensland Legal Walk 6


Please donate before you walk

It’s one week to go before the Queensland Legal Walk – you can improve your well-being and increase access to justice at the same time!

Your donations keep vital LawRight services open, so please take the time to be generous and donate before you walk.

Donate to your favourite team at

Donate to your favourite person (yes – it can be yourself!) by searching their team and then searching team member.

Help keep our financial counsellor service open

Alex was offered a personal loan while he was experiencing significant mental health and addiction issues. His loan soon “blew out” to a $13,000 debt. We met Alex when he had committed to rehab, obtained work and was expecting a baby with his partner. But the stress of working overtime to pay off his debts concerned his psychologist, who referred him to LawRight. LawRight’s financial counsellor worked with our staff lawyers to achieve a complete waiver of the debt and repair of credit history. The financial counsellor also negotiated an affordable payment plan for Alex’s fines.

Alex wrote: “You all have been amazing and I cannot thank you all enough for helping me with the biggest thorn in my side which was the loan. The bank removed the entire loan and every missed repayment off my credit file which will help me so much in the future. This service to me is something that could change the lives of so many people that genuinely need it. I am very grateful.”


LawRight Newsletter - April 2022 - Queensland Legal Walk 5

We’re excited – over 700 supporters have registered for the Queensland Legal Walk

We’re very excited – over 700 supporters have registered for the Queensland Legal Walk and more are joining everyday. If every walker raises $200 we’ll keep the Magistrates Court service open for people like Simon.

Simon is a young job-seeker with anxiety. He was one of the first clients of LawRight’s pilot Magistrates Court service. Simon’s key social interaction was a large social club. He’d been a member for years when he observed some improper financial transactions. When Simon raised this with the club executive, he was ignored and banned from the club. He was upset and voiced his concerns on social media, but was shocked when soon after, he was sued for defamation in the Magistrates Court for $70,000.

A regional Community Legal Centre helped Simon but attempts to negotiate were unsuccessful and the CLC connected Simon to LawRight. Pro bono lawyers have helped Simon over several months to prepare court documents and articulate his legal arguments. The matter is ongoing but LawRight’s help in defamation matters typically stops these conflicts escalating.
LawRight’s Health Justice Partnership at the Mater Young Adults Health Centre is another service that relies on our fund-raising.

Share housing is often challenging but even more for marginalised young adults. LawRight helped Rory, who told us:

“My roommate signed up to pay a debt belonging to a previous housemate for unpaid electricity bills. Without consulting, he signed us up to a pay a rate that factoring in Centrelink being my only income I was left without money to eat or function.

Mater staff suggested I tell LawRight, who “helped me plan and act out opening lines of communications with my roommates… and with the Energy Company and organisations to help. They made the process painless and were very helpful in providing knowledge about aspects of things I had totally no idea about. I would recommend LawRight to anyone in a position where they are overwhelmed… I always felt safe.”


How to donate

It’s easiest to donate by selecting a team at

Use the search function on the page to find your team. If you want to donate to an individual it is still easier to select their team first.

Team registration

Donations are tax-deductible.

LawRight Newsletter - April 2022 - Queensland Legal Walk 4

LawRight April 2022 – Financial counselling, domestic violence and toll fines

LawRight, with support from a member firm, gave evidence this week to a parliamentary committee about the use of discretion and debt infringement notices*. In preparation, we reviewed 20 cases where we assisted homeless (or at risk) clients with toll and camera offence fines. We confirmed:

  • 79-80% of fines debtors were female and had a history of domestic violence.
  • The average fine debt was >$10,000 per person. On average, 44% of that debt related to unpaid tolls, often acquired by their former partners.

Women in this situation are often unaware of the fine or unable to pay.

Annie’s violent partner acquired >$10,000 of speeding, parking and toll fines in her vehicle, but kept the mail from her. Annie only became aware of the debt when she separated. The debt payment plan she felt compelled to agree to, left her unable to afford rent or food and she slept in a tent on a friend’s property.

Clare fled a violent and controlling relationship but the bad tenancy history, bank and consumer debts followed her, as well as a fines debt of >$20,000. LawRight advocated with the DTMR to have all Clare’s toll fines cancelled, cleared her negative tenancy history and helped her resolve the other ‘sexually transmitted debts’.

Annie and Clare are typical of the women assisted by LawRight’s financial counsellor in collaboration with pro bono lawyers. That strategic combination also recently secured a $30,000 credit card debt waiver for a 60 year old woman on DSP who had left her violent long-term marriage and is now homeless. She wrote to us this week:

“I just wanted everyone at LawRight to know what a wonderful caring finance counsellor you have on your team.”

*Read our submission and or watch an ABC news story from September 2021 here.