"Our Commonwealth clients are faced with increasing pressures in a changing environment. Our people have worked within and with government for many years, so we understand the need for astute, pragmatic advice that considers the bigger picture."
—Simonetta Astolfi - Partner and Sector Leader - Commonwealth
The Commonwealth environment evolves year in, year out. Election cycles, changes in government and policy, and macro-influence all impact the continuity of projects and agendas. The deregulation agenda is driving requirements on our clients to reduce costs, improve efficiencies and enhance performance. Clients tell us that the issues of probity, transparency, obtaining value for the public funds they use, productivity, and a transitioning workforce all shape the way they approach each day.
With such scalable, complex and evolving demands – our Commonwealth clients seek clear, concise legal advice. Our lawyers work across:
- Administrative law and defensible decision-making
- Contracting and procurement
- Disputes, litigation and alternative dispute resolution
- Employment and Workplace Health & Safety
- Probity and governance
- Risk, compliance and enforcement
- Royal Commissions and Inquiries
- Statutory interpretation.
We hang our hat on a deep understanding of the challenges and competing priorities faced by government in executing its responsibilities and obligations. Our track record reflects significant matters across all areas of the Commonwealth, including:
- probity adviser on significant projects such as the procurement of a new icebreaker shipping capability for the Australian Antarctic Division, employment services outsourcing and major procurement projects in the health sector and whole of Commonwealth services
- the development of a risk-based compliance and enforcement strategy for federal regulators and advising Commonwealth agencies on the management of internal compliance obligations
- advising on the establishment of bilateral agreements with the states and territories in relation to environmental approvals
- conducting a broad range of government litigation and dispute resolution, including civil penalty litigation, administrative law and commercial disputes.
Our firm is committed to government, and our Commonwealth practice is led by lawyers based in Canberra. They each have significant experience advising and acting for Commonwealth agencies. Most of them have also worked in Commonwealth agencies. This means we understand how you operate, your needs beyond strict legal issues, and the support your teams require from their external lawyers. Our lawyers in Canberra are backed by our Sydney and Melbourne based teams who offer a great depth of knowledge in acting for all levels of government.
Our people are experts in administrative law, litigation and dispute resolution, employment law, corporate law, property, procurement and contracting, probity and regulatory and compliance advice. Our long-standing relationships with Commonwealth clients are built on:
- providing practical, pragmatic and responsive advice – expect concise, solutions-focussed advice, and manage turnaround times to align with your expectations
- excellent value for money – we understand the importance of using taxpayer funds appropriately, and the costs pressures and internal approvals processes to which Commonwealth agencies are subject; we scope accurately and manage the matter to ensure that we are able to stick to our quotes
- being easy to work with – it is important to us that we are seen as partners in developing a solution for our clients.
Awards and Recognition
Member – Institute of Public Administration Australia; National Press Club; National Property Council of Australia
Best Lawyers 2018
- Pria O’Sullivan – Government Practice; Real Property Law
- Simonetta Astolfi – Government Practice; Regulatory Practice; Corporate/Governance Practice
- Caroline Atkins – Government Practice; Information Technology; Intellectual Property; Outsourcing Law
- Anthony Willis – Government Practice; Information Technology
- Gavan Mackenzie – Government Practice
- Ian Temby – Government Practice
- Katherine Armytage – Government Practice
- Ron Smooker – Corporate/Governance Practice; Energy Law
- Mark Henry – Government Practice; Public Law
- Andrew Chapman – Construction/Infrastructure Law
- David Laidlaw – Litigation
- Greg Badcock – Real Property Law
- Patrick Ibbotson – Planning and Environmental Law; Water Law
- Michael Winram – Planning and Environmental Law
Chambers Asia 2018
- Maddocks is ranked in the following areas: Construction; Corporate and M&A; Employment; Environment; Government; Real Estate; Restructuring and insolvency; Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT); IT and Telecommunications.
- Simonetta Astolfi is ranked in Government
- Caroline Atkins is ranked in Government, Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT); IT and Telecommunications
- Anthony Willis is ranked in Government, Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT); IT and Telecommunications
- Brendan Coady is ranked in Competition and Trade, Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT); IT and Telecommunications
- Bruce Heddle is ranked for Employment
- Patrick Ibbotson is ranked in Environment; Government
- Andrew Chapman is ranked in Construction,
- Mark Henry is ranked in Government
The Mandarin – public sector news