Determining how far a person can lawfully go in protecting themselves in a home invasion requires consideration of complex legal issues.
By requiring that a person acting in self-defence must act genuinely and reasonably, Australian states and territories appropriately balance self-defence against vigilantism.
Malcolm Turnbull has taken a series of steps to clear the path to a double-dissolution election.
After many weeks of speculation, the government has laid down the challenge for the Senate and smoothed the path for a double-dissolution election.
Many asylum seekers need the safety net of complementary protection to save them from torture or persecution.
If passed, a new migration bill could mean that a person at risk of torture from the Syrian government would have to prove that they could not have gone to a part of Syria controlled by Islamic State.
The majority of people at risk of forced marriage are under 18 and female.
While some progress has been made in reducing instances of forced marriage in Australia, more needs to be done.
It is for George Brandis to decide whether and how to audit Commonwealth laws for justifiable encroachments on common law rights.
The Australian Law Reform Commission has given George Brandis a report that does all that it reasonably could, while falling well short of what it was asked to do.
A plebiscite on legalising same-sex marriage is bad policy that ought to be revisited.
Australian parliaments routinely legislate in respect of socially contentious issues without resorting to plebiscites or referenda.
The High Court is unlikely to be sympathetic to claims of discrimination against the microparties in the proposed Senate reforms.
A suggested constitutional challenge to the Senate reforms through the High Court is unlikely to succeed.
Liberal MP Andrew Nikolic (right) is close to deposed prime minister Tony Abbott.
In an era of ever-increasing counter-terrorism powers, what is Andrew Nikolic’s appointment to a powerful parliamentary committee likely to mean for its scrutiny of national security legislation?
Anglican Dean of Brisbane Peter Catt is one of several Australian church leaders to promise sanctuary to asylum seekers.
The church’s assertion of sanctuary will stimulate debate about the morality and justice of Australia's current laws with regard to asylum seekers.
Every state and territory in Australia permits sentences of life without parole.
As a country that claims to uphold the human rights of all – including those before the law – Australia should take notice of international practice when it comes to life imprisonment.
Consorting laws have been introduced under the pretext of combating organised crime – including that committed by bikie gangs.
Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia have introduced restrictive "consorting" laws. But are the laws justified? Are they an efficient and effective way to combat organised crime?
George Brandis says the government will adopt the proposed changes to anti-terror laws that criminalise disclosure.
Until a public interest exemption is included in Section 35P, the offence will continue to impact press freedom and have a chilling effect on media organisations’ ability to report on ASIO’s activities.
Coalition senator Eric Abetz claims he and other Liberal MPs do not have to respect the result of a coming plebiscite on same-sex marriage.
It is easy to envisage a number of arguments that MPs might use in an attempt to justify ignoring the result of a same-sex marriage plebiscite and voting contrary to its result.
There has been a rapid expansion of the tasks now carried out on a daily basis around Australia by private security personnel.
The legal status of private security staff is, for the most part, decidedly uncertain.
The Law Council of Australia has called for the end of mandatory sentencing, so is it time to put a stop to this ineffective and disproportionate system?
As the Law Council of Australia calls for the end of mandatory sentencing, it might be time for the Australian government to evaluate and resolve the troubles of this problematic system.
State leaders endorsed a plan at COAG last week that would see some terrorists jailed indefinitely.
Detaining persons convicted of terrorist offences for lengthy periods after they have served their time could risk radicalising a section of the community who see the measure as unjust.
The community must be careful of what it demands of the court system.
Gerard Baden-Clay's successful appeal against a conviction for the murder of his wife should not be misread as a sign of judicial tolerance of domestic violence.
The government’s citizenship-stripping bill passed on the final parliamentary sitting day of 2015.
If we are content to sanction, disapprove and respond to sole nationals committing terror-related offences without revoking their citizenship, why is revocation necessary for dual nationals?
Justice Minister Michael Keenan claims that control orders have proved effective in preventing terrorist attacks in Australia.
Preventive measures such as control orders should not be extended in the absence of evidence for their need or without safeguards.
The government’s new national security bill proposes to expand the secrecy provisions available to courts in control order proceedings.
The bill does not adequately balance the right of someone subjected to a control order to a fair trial and to know the case against them.