Bernadette is a highly experienced and respected Commonwealth administrative law advocate who has represented Commonwealth agencies in thousands of merits review, judicial review and statutory interpretation matters for more than three decades.
What she does
Bernadette regularly appears as an advocate in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT), Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia, and Federal Court of Australia.
She has extensive knowledge of the Commonwealth's operating environment—including the requirements of the Legal Services Directions—and expertise advising the Commonwealth on case strategy which takes into account the broader policy objectives of government. Bernadette regularly works in close co-operation with Courts and the AAT to implement case management initiatives which streamline practices and minimise costs.
Bernadette is skilled at designing and delivering targeted training to Commonwealth agencies on a range of topics including regulatory powers, statutory interpretation, administrative litigation strategy, and the production and protection of information. She is the coordinator of Sparke Helmore’s national induction and CLE training program for Government Administrative Lawyers and is currently undertaking a Masters of Education.
Who she works with
Bernadette works with Commonwealth agencies.
Bernadette has a Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws from the University of New South Wales, and a Graduate Certificate in Change Management from the Australian Graduate School of Management. She is currently undertaking a Masters of Education.
Life before Sparkes
Bernadette began her career as a solicitor at the Australian Government Solicitor, where she acted for the Commonwealth in general litigation and debt recovery matters. She then worked in Sparke Helmore's Government team from 2000 to 2013 and returned to the firm’s Government team in 2017.
Life outside of Sparkes
Bernadette enjoys spending time with her large extended family. In summer you will find her at the beach and watching all forms of cricket.