Industrial Relations Court of Australia

The Industrial Relations Court of Australia was a short-lived Chapter III Court whose jurisdiction was transferred from the Federal Court in 1994,[1] and transferred back in 1997.[2][3] In the words of former Chief Justice Robert French, "The tide went in, the tide went out".[4] Every judge had a concurrent appointment in the Federal Court.[5] Despite the transfer of jurisdiction, any existing matter or appeal from an existing matter remained in the Industrial Relations Court of Australia,[6] with the result that the last case was not finally disposed of until 2005/6.[7] The Court was not to be abolished until after the last judge had retired.[2] The last judge to retire was Anthony North on 11 September 2018;[8] however, the court has not been formally abolished as of December 2018[citation needed].

Industrial Relations Court of Australia
Coat of Arms of Australia.svg
Established1994
Authorized byConstitution of Australia Industrial Relations Act 1988
Appeals toHigh Court of Australia
Websitefedcourt.gov.au/about/courts-and-tribunals/irca

The court was the latest in a line of specialist federal courts dealing with industrial relations matters,[9] being the Commonwealth Court of Conciliation and Arbitration (1904–1956), whose court and arbitration functions were divided as a result of the Boilermakers' case,[10] succeeded by Commonwealth Industrial Court (1956–1973), which was renamed as the Australian Industrial Court (1973–1977).[4] The last remaining judge of the Australian Industrial Court, Ray Northrop was appointed to the new court.[11]

The creation of a specialist court was controversial,[12] with academics Breen Creighton and Andrew Stewart stating that it was not clear that the creation of the court would serve any useful purpose.[13] One of those opposed to the creation of the court was Federal Court judge Murray Wilcox who was subsequently offered appointment as Chief Justice. Wilcox reminded the Attorney-General, Michael Lavarch, of his opposition, to which Lavarch responded that Wilcox's knowledge of the pitfalls would help the court to avoid them.[14]

List of judgesEdit

Position Name From To Term Comments Notes
Chief Justice Murray Wilcox 30 March 1994 2 October 2006 12 years, 186 days [14]
Judge Ray Northrop 9 August 1995 1 year, 132 days [11]
John Keely 29 February 1996 1 year, 336 days [15]
Jeffrey Spender 19 July 2010 16 years, 111 days [16]
Peter Gray AM 17 May 2013 19 years, 48 days [17]
Donnell Ryan 2 June 2011 17 years, 64 days Additional Judge of the Supreme Court (ACT) [18]
Malcolm Lee 1 May 2006 12 years, 32 days [15]
John von Doussa 15 August 2003 9 years, 138 days [15]
Michael Moore 1 August 2011 17 years, 124 days Additional Judge of the Supreme Court (ACT) [15]
Margaret Beazley 28 April 1996 2 years, 30 days Appointed to Court of Appeal (NSW) [19]
Shane Marshall 17 July 1995 21 November 2015 20 years, 127 days [20]
Anthony North 3 October 1995 11 September 2018 22 years, 343 days Additional Judge of the Supreme Court (ACT) [8]
Rodney Madgwick 3 October 1995 21 April 2008 12 years, 201 days Additional Judge of the Supreme Court (ACT) [15]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Industrial Relations Reform Act 1993 (Cth).
  2. ^ a b Workplace Relations and other Legislation Amendment Act 1996 (Cth).
  3. ^ "Annual Report 1996–97" (PDF). Industrial Relations Court of Australia. September 1997. Retrieved 5 December 2018.
  4. ^ a b French, R (1 May 2014). "Federal Circuit Court – History Repeats Itself" (PDF). High Court. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
  5. ^ "Industrial Relations Court of Australia". fedcourt.gov.au. Retrieved 7 December 2018.
  6. ^ Autistic Association of New South Wales v Dodson [1999] FCA 439, (1999) 93 FCR 213 (14 April 1999), Federal Court (Full Court).
  7. ^ "Annual Report 2005–06" (PDF). Industrial Relations Court of Australia. 26 September 2006. Retrieved 19 October 2018.
  8. ^ a b "Ceremonial Sitting of the Full Court to Farewell the Honourable Justice North", fedcourt.gov.au, 7 September 2018, retrieved 18 September 2018
  9. ^ Moore, M. "The role of specialist courts - an Australian perspective". [2001] Federal Judicial Scholarship 11.
  10. ^ R v Kirby; Ex parte Boilermakers' Society of Australia (Boilermaker's case) [1956] HCA 10, (1956) 94 CLR 254  , High Court. Affirmed on appeal Attorney-General (Cth) v The Queen [1957] UKPC 4, [1957] AC 288; [1957] UKPCHCA 1, (1957) 95 CLR 529, Privy Council (on appeal from Australia).
  11. ^ a b Gawler, Mike. "Farewell to Justice Northrop" (PDF). (1998) 72(10) The Law Institute Journal 19.
  12. ^ McCallum, R; McCarry, GJ & Ronfeldt, P, eds. (1994). "Introduction". Employment Security. Federation Press. p. xxxii. ISBN 9781862871465.
  13. ^ Creighton, WB & Stewart, A (1994). Labour law : an introduction. Federation Press. p. 88. ISBN 1862871345.
  14. ^ a b "Farewell to the Hon Justice Murray Wilcox" (PDF). (2006 Summer) Bar News: Journal of the NSW Bar Association 93.
  15. ^ a b c d e "Former Judges of the Federal Court of Australia". Federal Court of Australia. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  16. ^ "Transcript of farewell to the Honourable Justice Spender". Federal Court of Australia. 14 July 2010. Archived from the original on 22 February 2011.
  17. ^ "Ceremonial Sitting of the Full Court To farewell the Honourable Justice Gray". fedcourt.gov.au. 17 May 2013. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  18. ^ "Ryan, Justice Donnell --- "Transcript of Farewell ceremony"". [2011] Federal Judicial Scholarship 7.
  19. ^ "Beazley, Margaret Joan (1951 - )". The Australian Women's Register. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  20. ^ "Ceremonial Sitting of the Full Court To farewell the Honourable Justice Marshall". fedcourt.gov.au. 20 November 2015. Retrieved 4 December 2018.