Dr Francesca Bartlett
This presentation considers judicial attitude to, and use of ethical and procedural powers to police, entrepreneurial approaches adopted by lawyers representing aggregate (class) actions in Australia. While litigation funding is lawful, Victorian courts, and the High Court, have recently considered how close the on record lawyer’s financial interest can lawfully and ethically be. Can the lawyers fund the action? Can the lawyer also be the lead plaintiff? Is it an abuse if it is found that bringing the action ‘is not [for] a purpose of earning legal fees as a desired by-product of the litigation. It is the predominant purpose’? What does this all tell us about the ethics of litigation lawyering today?
About the speaker
Francesca Bartlett is a Senior Lecturer at the TC Beirne School of Law at The University of Queensland. She teaches professional legal ethics and contract law. Her research interests include professional regulation, lawyers’ ethics, civil procedure and women and the law. She was a CI on a recently completed ARC funded discovery project, the Australian Feminist Judgments Project. Before coming to academia, she practised as a commercial solicitor at Allens.