A unique opportunity for lawyers to broaden their experience in the areas of international and operations law, administrative, discipline and civil law.
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The Air Force Reserve Legal Officer is part of Defence Legal which is responsible for the provision of legal advice and other legal services to the Australian Defence Force, the Department of Defence and the Ministers on legal matters. Defence Legal is comprised of Navy, Army, Air Force and civilian lawyers.
Legal Officers undertake a wide variety of legal tasks, some of them rarely encountered by their civilian counterparts. The three main areas of practice for Reserve Air Force Legal Officers are:
- Operations Law;
- Military Discipline Law; and
- Military Administrative law.
A reserve Legal Officer may be requested to provide advice on operations law. International and operations law issues include, but are not limited to, international treaties and agreements, international air and space law, the law of the sea, the laws of armed conflict and UN Security Council resolutions. Operations law also includes all aspects of law that may impact on Australian Defence Force operations, including domestic law issues.
Military Discipline Law
The Defence Force Discipline Act (DFDA) provides a system of military discipline for the ADF. Specialist legal input is necessary because of the complexity of the work undertaken under the Defence Force Discipline Act (DFDA). Legal Officers provide legal reports for reviews of proceedings, and act as counsel. Legal Officers also play an important part in training commanders and other ADF personnel who are involved in dispensing military discipline.
Military Administrative Law
Commanders frequently turn to Legal Officers to ensure they comply with the requirements of administrative law when they make decisions that affect ADF members. Consequently, Legal Officers may provide advice on:
- Equal opportunities and anti-discrimination matters;
- Responses to applications for redress of grievance;
- The conduct of administrative inquiries;
- Civil law tasks include provision of advice on workplace health and safety, copyright law, environmental law, management of common law claims and on government contracts; and
- Most Reserve Legal Officers also provide limited legal assistance to Permanent Air Force personnel on their personal legal problems.