03 9225 6444
03 9225 6444
03 9225 6444
Hilary Bonney
Chamber: Room N/A, Owen Dixon Chambers East
Admitted: 04/04/1991
Called to Bar: 23/05/1996
Date Appointed Silk:
Qualifications: BA (Melb), LLB (Hons) (Melb), LLM (Monash)


Type of practice: I presently practice in the following areas: 

  • family law;
  • intervention orders at Magistrates’ Court and County Court level (including appeals); 
  • crimes compensation hearings including appeals to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal against decisions of the Tribunal; 
  • coronial inquests;
  • guardianship and administration hearings;
  • anti-discrimination and equal opportunity hearings both at the state and federal level; 
  • unfair dismissals;
  • administrative law (merits review and judicial review) at the VCAT;
  • Children’s Court both in the care and protection jurisdiction and the criminal law jurisdiction; and appeals from the Children’s Court to the County Court;
  • criminal law – both prosecuting and defence pleas and appeals in the Magistrates’ and County Court; 
  • prosecuting on behalf of government departments in the Magistrates’ and County Court; 
  • intervening on behalf of Centres Against Sexual Assaults in criminal proceedings. 

Examples of recent cases include: 

  • acting for a complainant in a sexual harassment case against an employer in the Anti-discrimination List of the VCAT; 
  • acting for CASA in a rape trial as an intervener seeking to have the victim’s counselling files suppressed; 
  • acting as junior counsel for the defence in the Supreme Court (in the first electronically lodged appeal) in an appeal against a sentence received for drug trafficking; 
  • acting in the Children’s Court for two girls who were alleged to have been neglected by their mother.

Professional background:

  • Articles 1990, Freehill, Hollingdale and Page – litigation, industrial law and intellectual property sections
  • Solicitor, Freehill, Hollingdale and Page 1991-1992 – litigation section 
  • Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (Vic) 1992-1994 – County Court general prosecutions section 
  • Wisewoulds 1994-1995 – litigation section 
  • Lecturer, Melbourne University Law School 1995 – taught Criminal Law, Contracts and Evidence 
  • Reader Victorian Bar March 1996.  Mentor – Felicity Hampel QC.

Other professional experience:

  • Tutor in Criminal Law, Trinity College 1992 
  • Tutor in Legal Studies, Southern Cross University 1996 
  • Guest Instructor in Practical Legal Education Course, Leo Cussen Institute, 1999 and continuing.
  • Member of Feminist Lawyers (Convenor 1997) and Women Barristers’ Association 
  • International Commission of Jurists (1990 -1993) 
  • Women’ s Legal Resource Group (1990 -1993 ) 
  • Member of List Committee for Barristers’ Clerk – Paul Holmes (1998,1999) 
  • Civil Locum Lawyer – Central Australian Aboriginal Legal Aid Service (2000)

Publications and seminar participation: 1999 – Author of Materials on Custodial Medicine for the Postgraduate Diploma in Forensic Medicine, Monash University  1998 – Speaker on Crimes Compensation – then and now for Warrnambool Legal Centre Justice Forum 1998 – Speaker on Appeals to the County Court at the Legal Aid Commission of Victoria  1995 – Author of Creating Maximum Difficulties – section 10 of the Sentencing Act 1991 after Boucher 900 (1995) 69 Law Institute Journal 1995 – Author of Young Offenders: Some Sentencing Considerations 897 (1995) 69 Law Institute Journal 1990 – Editor Girls Own Legal Resource Magazine for Girls (Women’s Legal Resource Group) (1990)


Practice Areas

Criminal Law
Appellate, Victims of Crime, Compensation, Proceeds of Crime,
Family Law
Care & Protection,
Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
Public Law & Administrative Law
Discrimination & Equal Opportunity, Judicial Review, Merits Review,
Inquests, Inquiries, Tribunals & Commissions
Discrimination & Equal Opportunity, Judicial Review, Merits Review,


Hilary Bonney