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  • Writer's pictureBrian AJ Newman LLB

Unions NSW v New South Wales [2023] HCA 4

What did the recent decision High Court prove? ........ nothing I put to you.


We have each come to know the flagrant waste of union resources, but this most recent matter seems utterly pointless on the face of it.

BAJN - play hard but fair
BAJN - play hard but fair

Here is a case summary for you, as detailed in the orders of KIEFEL CJ,

GAGELER, GORDON, EDELMAN, STEWARD, GLEESON AND JAGOT JJ;


'The questions stated by the parties for the opinion of the Full Court in the further amended special case filed on 10 November 2022 should be answered as follows: Question 1:

Is section 29(11) of the Electoral Funding Act 2018 (NSW) invalid because it impermissibly burdens the implied freedom of communication on governmental and political matters, contrary to the Commonwealth Constitution?


Answer:

Yes.


Question 1A:

As to proposed question 2 below:

a) Does the Court have jurisdiction to hear and determine the question? b) Should the Court in its discretion hear and determine the question?


Answer:

a) No. b) Unnecessary to answer.


Question 2:

If the answers to questions 1A(a) and (b) are “yes”: was section 35 of the Electoral Funding Act 2018 (NSW), as it stood from 1 July 2018 until 2 November 2022, invalid because it impermissibly burdened the implied freedom of communication on governmental and political matters, contrary to the Commonwealth Constitution?


Answer:

Does not arise.


Question 3:

Who should pay the costs of the special case?


Answer:

In relation to question 1, the defendant. Otherwise, there should be no order as to costs.'


What was the purpose and what was the direct benefit to workers who had contributed to the legal expenses?


An utterly pointless exercise and another example of waste.


Read the Jade article on the case and decide for yourself.


Author

Brian AJ Newman LLB




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