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Tribunal and Court decisions

Tribunal and Court decisions

If the Commissioner is satisfied there is sufficient evidence of misconduct on the part of a lawyer, he can take a variety of disciplinary actions, including bringing proceedings in the Tribunal or the Supreme Court.  In those proceedings, the Commissioner (or the Board / Committee before him) will be a party to the proceedings.

Also, a Complainant can commence his or her own proceedings against a lawyer in the Tribunal (section 82(2)(d)).  The Commissioner (or the Board / Committee before him) is not generally a party to any such proceedings.

If a case proceeds through the Tribunal or the Supreme Court (or both), the final ‘decision’ will be published and include details of the outcome and reasons for it.

A lawyer who is ultimately found by the Tribunal or the Supreme Court to have engaged in misconduct will have disciplinary action taken against him or her by the Tribunal / the Supreme Court. In certain circumstances, the details of that lawyer and the disciplinary action will be added to the public Register of Disciplinary Action.

Even if there is a finding of misconduct by the Tribunal, or even by the Supreme Court, that decision may be / have been overturned or watered down on appeal or review.  The decision itself will not have any link or reference to any subsequent decisions of either the Tribunal, Supreme Court or the High Court that may have a bearing on that earlier decision.

Decisions of the Tribunal can be obtained from the Tribunal Secretary, Mr Glenn Hean.  He can be contacted on (08) 8204 8425, or by email at

Decisions of the Supreme Court (both single judge and Full Court) and the High Court can be accessed online through AustLII.