Government - Henry Davis York


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The myriad of issues confronting Australia's federal and state governments are far-reaching and complex. As a nation we face the need to re-shape the economy, the quest for smarter regulation as opposed to more regulation, delivery of fundamental services across infrastructure, education and health, and combatting a cyber-revolution.

HDY is home to some very dedicated and passionate government lawyers. Our government clients tell us that one of the things that sets us apart from other law firms is how much we know about their department or agency, its history and the environment in which it operates.  In fact, we have such long-standing relationships with some of our government clients that they rely on us for their corporate memory!

We have an enviable client list which has helped us to attract some of the best government lawyers in Australia, many of whom have also worked in-house in senior roles at some of the largest government agencies.

We advise Australia's largest State and Federal government departments and agencies, as well as 20 local councils, across all areas of law. For over 20 years we have partnered with some of NSW's largest agencies, such as Transport for NSW (TfNSW), Roads and Maritime Services (RMS), RailCorp, Sydney Trains and NSW Trains, the NSW Police Force, NSW Health, Department of Finance, Services and Innovation, Department of Industry, Skills and Regional Development, Family and Community Services, Sydney Water and the Council of the City of Sydney. For many of these clients, our people are viewed as key members of their in-house teams.

We are approved advisers to the Commonwealth government and appointed to all areas of the Legal Services Multi-Use List. We advise some of the largest Commonwealth agencies including the Department of Defence, ASIC, APRA, the RBA and the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC).

Over the years, we have helped our government clients to weather extensive reform and other changes and challenges they've faced. This includes assisting the highest levels of government to implement legislative and structural reform; advising on high profile, complex government investigations and inquiries which are shaping the future of Australia; and giving strategic advice on significant government infrastructure projects.

They are well versed in government matters and therefore they are ahead of the game in many respects

Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2014


Graham Read


61 2 9947 6053

61 411 035 993

Our relevant experience

  • NSW Police Force

    Acting for the Commissioner of Police and other officers of the NSW Police Force in relation to the Lindt Café Siege Inquest.

  • Transport for NSW and RailCorp

    Lead legal advisers on the NSW Government's "Fixing the Trains" project, described as the "once in a generation" reform of NSW's railway operations. HDY advised on the establishment of the 3 new entities as statutory subsidiaries of RailCorp; and the demerger of RailCorp into 3 subsidiaries covering legal compliance, governance, rail safety, environment, property, contracts and employment.

  • Sydney Water

    Represented 2 former Sydney Water senior executives in 2 high profile ICAC investigations: Credo and Spicer. ICAC is investigating alleged corruption in Australian Water Holdings (AWH) contracts with state-owned Sydney Water.

  • NSW Police Force

    Acted for the NSW Police Force on one of the most high profile and sensitive government investigations in recent years: the Cunneen Special Commission.

  • APRA

    Advising the prudential regulator, APRA, in its investigations into the collapse of Trio Capital Ltd resulting from the largest ever superannuation fraud in Australia, and acting on the pursuit of banning orders against directors.

Our government insights

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