Litigation involving Churches in NSW

I was privileged to host a guest lecture in the “Law and Religion” course I teach, on Friday August 26, from Professor Keith Mason, former President of the NSW Court of Appeal and renowned legal scholar and jurist, on the topic of “Litigation involving churches in NSW”. Professor Mason is one of Australia’s leading experts on the law involving churches, having been involved as both counsel and on the bench in a number of important cases. His lecture was a fascinating tour of church litigation from the earliest days of the Colony up till the case involving the Bathurst Diocese just last year (for my earlier comments on that case see this previous post.)

Professor Mason has indicated that he is happy for me to share the audio of the talk, which can be listened to here:

For those who interested in reading the cases he refers to, the following provides the full citations (and links where available):

Cases mentioned in Professor Keith Mason’s lecture

  1. “Hotheads”
    1. R v Hall (No 1) [1829] NSWSupC 13 (12 March 1829) ; Hall v Scott [1830] NSWSupC 29; (1830) NSW Sel Cas (Dowling) 437 (6 April 1830)
    2. Ex parte Rev George King [1861] NSWLeggeSC 1; (1861) 2 Legge 1307 (9 February 1861)
  2. Attempts to control conscience by legal processes
    1. Wylde v Attorney-General (NSW) [1948] HCA 39; (1948) 78 CLR 224 (6 December 1948) (“the Red Book case”)
    2. Scandrett v Dowling (1992) 27 NSWLR 483 (not available freely online)
  3. Churches as defendants
    1. Trustees of the Roman Catholic Church v Ellis & anor [2007] NSWCA 117 (24 May 2007)
    2. Anglican Development Fund Diocese of Bathurst v Palmer [2015] NSWSC 1856 (10 Dec 2015).