The plebiscite on whether Australia should legalise same-sex marriage is constitutionally unnecessary.
It's the plebiscite Australia doesn't have to have. But if the plebiscite on marriage equality goes ahead, how should it be designed?
Malcolm Turnbull has called for nationally consistent laws to enable convicted terrorists to be detained at the end of their prison sentence.
A post-sentence regime for convicted terrorists will only keep Australians safe if an accurate assessment of risk is possible.
In just four swipes on the interface of your phone, another person can access a wealth of your personal information.
In what circumstances can police search your phone? Must they obtain a search warrant? And what will happen if you refuse to provide your passcode or fingerprint required to access your phone?
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation Party is seen as the favourite to secure the final WA Senate position.
One Nation candidate Rod Culleton could win Western Australia's final Senate position, but Section 44 of the Constitution suggests he is ineligible to take his seat.
Most people against recognising Aboriginal customary law think there’s only one law in Australia.
Few in Australia understand the context and true meaning of customary law. Denials of its validity are often based on ignorance or on specific examples devoid of context.
Families going through breakdown need understanding, but so do lawmakers trying to find fair outcomes from complex laws.
Adding to the trauma of a relationship breaking down, families can find themselves caught in a tangle of state and commonwealth laws.
Involving the media seems to send the message of how unpleasant the AFP can make life for people who challenge the government.
None of the politicians are talking about it, but threats to freedom of speech have emerged in three different guises in the first three weeks of the election campaign. First there was the assailing of…
Informed critique of the courts and their work is essential to the proper functioning of a democracy.
A "judicial activist", it seems, decides cases in favour of a preferred (non-“mainstream”) litigant or interest, to reach a result that is inconsistent with a conservative worldview.
The royal commission’s report should be viewed as only the start of the necessary transformation of Victoria’s family violence system.
The royal commission's recommendations seek a complete transformation of Victorian family violence services, and the state’s prevention of and response to family violence.
The NSW Electoral Commission’s withholding of public funding to the NSW Liberal Party may yet again imperil Arthur Sinodinos.
What does the latest donations scandal enveloping the NSW Liberal Party say about the trajectory of political finance regulation and enforcement?
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.