About Crown Law
Crown Law has been the principal provider of legal services to the Queensland Government since 1859 and has operated as a self-funded business unit of the Department of Justice and Attorney-General since 1997. Crown Law provides legal services to Queensland State Government entities including:
- all Queensland government departments and agencies
- statutory bodies and government-owned corporations
- commercialised business units
- disciplinary boards and tribunals.
Crown Law is Queensland Government’s only full-service legal practice, providing unrivalled expertise in government law.
Crown Law’s fees are set by Cabinet and, under arrangements established by Cabinet in January 1997, State Government legal services are divided into two categories – ‘tied’ and ‘untied’ legal work. Untied work is open to competition from private legal firms.
Our business direction and principles guide us in everyday practice as we interact with our clients, our people, the community and the Queensland State Government.
Solutions for Government.
Statement of Strategic Intent
In pursuing its vision, Crown Law will commit to providing a reliable, unified, whole¬-of-Government approach to the delivery of legal services that recognises the Crown Solicitor’s unique role.
At the core of Crown Law’s business principles are our five values that provide a solid foundation for our approach in all aspects of what is achieved for clients:
- working together
- delivering value for money
- getting the job done and improving each time
- respecting people
- providing responsive client service.
Executive Management Group
Crown Law’s Executive Management Group (EMG) support the Crown Solicitor in the development and implementation of long-term business strategies and maintaining focus on delivering high-level services to clients.
To achieve this, EMG manages the:
Vision – through our Statement of Strategic Intent, Values and Strategic Business Plan.
Organisational performance – by sharing information that aids decision-making to ensure decisions and strategies take a whole-of-Crown Law perspective. This includes monitoring business and operational performance, identifying emerging issues and business opportunities and being responsive to new and changing client needs.
Leadership and direction – for our people and organisational culture.
Crown Law’s EMG currently includes nine of our most senior and experienced professionals:
- Crown Solicitor, two Senior Deputy Crown Solicitors, Executive Director, four Deputy Crown Solicitors and Crown Counsel.
Each member brings a wealth of expertise and experience in their specific area of law or business practice and is committed to improving professional services and leading Crown Law to the delivery of ‘Solutions for Government’.
L-R: Deputy Crown Solicitor, Helen Freemantle; Crown Counsel, Steve Marton; Executive Director, Susan Mackie; Crown Solicitor, Greg Cooper; Senior Deputy Crown Solicitor, Tony Keyes; Senior Deputy Crown Solicitor, Robyn Martin; Deputy Crown Solicitor, Peter Dwyer; Deputy Crown Solicitor, Nicholas Inglis. Absent: Deputy Crown Solicitor, Robert Campbell.
Crown Solicitor, Greg Cooper
The Crown Solicitor is Crown Law’s most senior officer, handling the most difficult legal matters on behalf of the Crown. He acts as the Solicitor on the record for the State, and provides independent legal advice to the Premier, Attorney-General, Ministers, Directors-General, and departmental officers.
The Crown Solicitor also takes responsibility for resolving any real or perceived conflict of interest involving a legal matter being handled by Crown Law, and is responsible for setting our professional and ethical standards.
Executive Director, Susan Mackie
Executive Director Susan Mackie is responsible for leading all business aspects of Crown Law. Susan oversees Crown Law’s business operations and strategic direction, reporting directly to the Crown Solicitor. Susan’s responsibilities include:
- developing and implementing the practice’s Strategic Business Plan
- developing Crown Law as a commercially-viable business and increasing its share of the Queensland Government legal services market
- leading the development of appropriate business systems and practices
- supporting and seeking innovative ways to develop the culture of Crown Law as customer-focused, results-orientated, commercially-based business
- leading the Practice Management Branch.
Crown Law has five main branches of law that form two groups led by two Senior Deputy Crown Solicitors, Tony Keyes and Robyn Martin.
Each of our 18 legal teams adopts a cross-team approach to deliver seamless client service encompassing a whole-of-Government perspective.
Commercial and Public Law
The Commercial and Public Law Group is led by Senior Deputy Crown Solicitor, Tony Keyes and consists of three branches:
- Commercial and Infrastructure Branch
- The- Commercial and Infrastructure Branch is led by Deputy Crown Solicitor, Helen Freemantle
- Lawyers- in this branch combine their specialist knowledge with a unique understanding of the public sector framework, bringing these insights to every matter on which they advise including commercial, property, infrastructure and information technology matters.
- Public Law Branch
- The- Public Law Branch is led by Deputy Crown Solicitor, Robert Campbell
- Much- of the traditional and core government legal work is conducted by this branch. Many of the areas practised by Crown Law since 1859 are still – with growth and adaptations to both common law and statutes – areas of legal practice today. This includes industrial law, statutory prosecutions, and more contemporary areas of anti-discrimination, judicial review and freedom of information. Lawyers in this branch have high-level practical knowledge of the structure and workings of Parliament, the Judiciary and the Executive.
- Constitutional Law Branch
- The Constitutional Law Branch is led by Crown Counsel, Steve Marton
- Crown Law provides direct access to the Solicitor-General through this branch for advice and representation on significant matters affecting the interests of the State. The branch provides advice on both Commonwealth and State constitutional law and has significant experience in a range of government-specific litigation and advice, including providing advice on turning policy into legislation, the inconsistency of Commonwealth and State laws, scope of Commonwealth and State powers and Federal and State cooperative schemes.
- The Constitutional Law Branch also defends defamation claims against public servants, provides specific advice on Parliament, the Judiciary and the Executive and handles indemnities for Crown employees.
L-R: Assistant Crown Counsel, Gerard Sammon; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Margaret Maloney; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Karen Watson; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Michael Boughey; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Clare Smith; Deputy Crown Solicitor, Helen Freemantle; Senior Deputy Crown Solicitor, Tony Keyes; Crown Counsel, Steve Marton; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Melinda Pugh; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Robyn Hill; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Andrew Ross; Assistant Crown Counsel, Rob Hutchings. Absent: Deputy Crown Solicitor, Robert Campbell and Assistant Crown Solicitor, Phil Boustead.
Litigation and Government Insurance
The Litigation and Government Insurance Group is led by Senior Deputy Crown Solicitor, Robyn Martin and consists of two branches:
- Litigation Branch
- The Litigation Branch is led by Deputy Crown Solicitor, Peter Dwyer
- The branch manages a highly diverse range of commercial and other civil litigation on behalf of the Queensland Government. The commercial litigation can range from simple debt recovery to unique land fraud claims, to complex, high value and high profile commercial disputes
- The branch also acts for the State in planning and environment appeals and native title determination claims. In addition to the conduct of this litigation, the branch’s specialist planning and environment and native title lawyers advise extensively on the variety of issues encompassed by these practice areas, particularly as they impact on major resources and infrastructure projects involving the Queensland Government.
- Government Insurance Branch
- The Government Insurance Branch is led by Deputy Crown Solicitor, Nicholas Inglis
- The branch specialises in the managing of complex and contentious civil claims in the area of personal injury litigation. Members of the branch work closely with the Queensland Government Insurance Fund (QGIF), to ensure delivery of the most cost-effective outcomes for government. Another major client of the branch is WorkCover Queensland, for which the conduct of workers compensation injury claims and common law claims are managed
- The branch deals with a diverse range of injuries and work-related incidents which occur throughout Queensland as part of the operations of government ranging from slip and fall matters, through to complex and sensitive litigation claims conducted on behalf of the State
- The branch also provides expert advice in respect to matters arising out of personal injuries litigation to all client areas within the Queensland Government.
L-R: Assistant Crown Solicitor, Leah Mogg; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Paula Freeleagus; Deputy Crown Solicitor, Nicholas Inglis; Senior Deputy Crown Solicitor, Robyn Martin; Deputy Crown Solicitor, Peter Dwyer; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Glenn Wilshier; Assistant Crown Solicitor, David French; Assistant Crown Solicitor, Lara Rega. Absent: Assistant Crown Solicitor, Bernadette Wrafter.
Practice Management Branch
In addition to our legal branches, Crown Law is also supported by the Practice Management Branch which works to ensure operational support functions are streamlined and efficiently managed to allow our lawyers to focus on their core business. The Practice Management Branch is led by Crown Law’s Executive Director, Susan Mackie and comprises four teams:
- Finance and Business Services
- The Finance and Business Services Team is responsible for finance and
asset management. This includes coordination of client billing, expenses and disbursements, travel arrangements, accommodation and furnishings and other general stores and inventory. The team also provides record management, mail and document production services.
- The Finance and Business Services Team is responsible for finance and
- Information and Knowledge Management
- The Information and Knowledge Management Team consists of teams and projects which aim to provide high quality information technology services to assist the overall improvement of business processes and systems to support Crown Law. The team also manages the provision of our Library services.
- Marketing and Communications
- The Marketing and Communications Team is responsible for the development and promotion of client service activities and other key communication objectives both within, and external to, the practice
- The team helps connect Crown Law with our clients by working with our legal professionals and support staff to coordinate client training, develop publications and promotional material, maintain Crown Law’s presence online and assist with coordinating client feedback.
- Organisational Development
- The Organisational Development Team provides advice and support on a diverse range of organisational development and human resource matters. The team develops and implements a range of initiatives to optimise organisational culture, performance and workforce capabilities. It also offers a consultancy service on issues such as employee relations, workforce management, attraction and retention and change management.
L-R: Executive Director, Susan Mackie; Manager, Finance and Business Services, Renee Smith; Manager, Information and Knowledge Management, Steven Moskwa; Manager, PReP Project, Holly De Bortoli. Absent: Executive Manager, Marketing and Communications and Organisational Development, Belinda Bayliss.