By Michael Head
Federation Press – 2013 – 352 pages
Constant changes in administrative law reinforce the need for an up-to-date volume that critically examines the law in its contemporary, as well as historical, context.
This third edition assesses the overhaul of the federal and State Freedom of Information legislation in 2009-10, the potential impact of the Human Rights (Parliamentary Scrutiny) Act 2011 (Cth) and the implications of the resignation of the Commonwealth Ombudsman in 2011.
It also reviews a string of possibly far-reaching High Court rulings, notably Plaintiff M70/2011(the ‘Malaysian Solution’ case), Plaintiff M61/2010E (detainees’ access to judicial review), Pape v Commissioner of Taxation (emergency fiscal power) and Kirk v Industrial Relations Commission (privative clauses).
Taken as a whole, these developments highlight the ever-evolving shape of administrative law. They underscore a central argument of this book – the necessity to examine the content and trajectory of administrative law in its political, administrative and socio-economic settings.
This edition is further fashioned from the rewarding experience of teaching administrative law since 1998.
Reviews of previous editions:
A very useful guide that provides an overview of this difficult area of law as a primary guide for the student. Practitioners will also find it an invaluable first point of reference. The book is written in a clear and concise style [which] allows the reader to quickly establish the relevant principles … The book achieves its purpose of making administrative law understandable, accessible and interesting. … For those of us who work in this area of law, Michael Head’s book is an essential addition to the library.
CJ King, Victorian Bar News, Summer 2006
Head’s concise text … gives an up-to-date, honest, pithy and accurate account of administrative law in Australia today. … Nine chapters explain in thorough yet comprehensible detail the various areas of judicial review available to parties aggrieved by an administrative decision.
Sarah Keenan, (2006) 26 Qld Lawyer 268
This is a book which every person interested in current affairs will find of the greatest interest, whether lawyer, politician, journalist or inquisitive reader.
I cannot leave this review without complimenting Dr Head, on the depth of original and up to date discussion contained in the second edition, following so soon after the first.
BJM, Law Letter, Journal of Law Society of Tasmania, Spring 2008 - Issue 101
It is written in a clear and concise manner that makes it very readable. the facts of cases and other events are well explained, so that those who might lack a background understanding of cases or events will not be disadvantaged.
(200) 16 AJ Admin L 173
1. What is Administrative Law? 2. How to Approach Administrative Law 3. The Constitutional and Legal Framework 4. Where to Begin? Non-Judicial Review of Administrative Action 5. Other Avenues of Review: The Ombudsmen, Freedom of Information and the Right to Reasons 6. Delegated Legislation and Statutory Interpretation 7. Introduction to Judicial Review: Jurisdiction, Justiciability and Standing 8. “Simple” Ultra Vires: Decisions Made Beyond Power 9. “Extended” Ultra Vires: Abuse of Power 10. “Extended” Ultra Vires: Refusal to Exercise a Discretion 11. Procedural Fairness (Natural Justice) 12. The Content of the Hearing Rule 13. The Bias Rule, Reasons and Probative Evidence 14. Substantive Fairness? Estoppel: Undertakings Regarding the Future Exercise of Power 15. Status of Unlawful Decisions and Ouster Clauses 16. The Final Hurdle! Judicial Remedies and the ADJR Act 17. An Brief Overview and Exam Advice 18. Case Study 1: A Simple Case of Review of Cancellation of Pensions? 19. Case Study 2: The Removal of the Kosovar Refugees
Dr Michael Head is a Professor of Law at the University of Western Sydney, having previously taught law at LaTrobe, Adelaide and ANU. He holds a Masters degree in law from New York's Columbia University, and became UWS's first PhD graduate in law in 2004.
Professor Head is the author of numbers of legal works, including Evgeny Pashukanis: A Critical Re-appraisal (Routledge-Cavendish, 2007) and Crimes Against the State: From Treason to Terrorism (Ashgate, 2011), and co-author, with Dr Scott Mann, of Law in Perspective: Ethics, Society and Critical Thinking (2nd ed, UNSW Press, 2008).
His teaching and research interests lie in Jurisprudence, Administrative Law, Refugee and Immigration Law and Law Foundation (Law and Society). He publishes articles regularly in the fields of socialist legal theory and civil liberties.