New edition provides fresh, authoritative treatment of judicial review of administrative actions in Australia.
When the first edition of Judicial Review of Administrative Action and Government Liability was published 25 years ago, it quickly established a reputation as one of Australia’s most respected legal texts.
Now, its seventh edition, published by Thomson Reuters in December 2021, remains a definitive scholarly book for judicial officers, practitioners and students alike, with the sixth edition (2017) having been judicially cited hundreds of times.
“One of the issues that I was most interested to write about from a personal point of view was the High Court’s analysis of the constitutional injunction jurisdiction in Smethurst v Commissioner of Police (2020) 376 ALR 575,” said Professor Greg Weeks, co-author of the book and an administrative law scholar at The Australian National University (ANU) College of Law.
The High Court of Australia unanimously found a 2019 raid on journalist Annika Smethurst's Canberra home by the Federal Police was unlawful on technical grounds, because it "misstated" relevant criminal laws and was not specific enough about the alleged offences.
“That case also presented some fascinating issues about the borders between torts and admin law,” added Professor Weeks.
Together with co-authors Emeritus Professor Mark Aronson (UNSW Faculty of Law) and Professor Matthew Groves (Deakin Law School), Professor Weeks said the seventh edition is enlarged with the addition of new chapters analysing Australia's distinctive approach to judicial review and the obligation to support administrative decisions with statements of reasons.
For almost 30 years, ‘Judicial Review of Administrative Action and Government Liability’ (@TRAUS) has been an institution in #auslaw circles. Its sixth edition was judicially cited almost 200 times. Now, its seventh edition – co-authored by our own Prof Greg Weeks – is available! pic.twitter.com/MBJ7INMHrN— ANU College of Law (@ANU_Law) January 5, 2022
“The misconceptions about Australia’s approach to judicial review are common but understandable in as much as they emerge mainly from countries which take a less strict approach to separation of powers issues that are constitutionally mandated here,” he noted.
Other developments since the sixth edition include the further refinement of review for unreasonableness, irrationality, and errors of fact; subconscious bias; onus of proof in habeas corpus; development of legislative methods for restricting judicial review; damages for government torts; and misfeasance in public office.
"In the five years since the last edition, judicial review in Australia has maintained its record of being in an almost constant state of development. The authors read hundreds of new cases as we wrote the new edition and found that – particularly in the areas listed above – the law had changed significantly since the sixth edition,” said Professor Weeks.
“One of the most interesting recent contributions to this debate has come from a series of High Court judgments which have added a materiality threshold to finding that a jurisdictional error has been made.”
Judicial Review of Administrative Action and Government Liability (7th ed.) is available in hardcover, softcover and digital formats. Purchase your copy here.