Buckland, Andrew

Chief General Counsel

Constitutional Litigation

Andrew commenced as Chief General Counsel following a 24 year career as a government lawyer. During the last 5 years Andrew has been the professional leader for our constitutional litigation practice and for the past 16 years has been the team leader and senior member of AGS’s constitutional litigation unit. He specialises in constitutional law, statutory interpretation, administrative law, executive power and federal jurisdiction issues.

Andrew has acted for the Commonwealth in well over 100 constitutional cases in the High Court and other superior courts, working closely with clients and 3 successive Solicitors-General to protect and promote the Commonwealth’s interests. These cases include many of the most significant and high-profile decisions for the Commonwealth over the last 18 years, such as challenges to COVID-19 related travel restrictions, cases on the qualification of parliamentarians in light of s 44 of the Constitution, Williams (No 1) and Williams (No 2) dealing with the scope of executive power, successive challenges to Australia’s immigration regime, cases on the reviewability of executive decision-making, challenges to taxation and electoral reforms, the tobacco plain packaging case, and the Work Choices case. Andrew has also previously led legal teams advising on the Commonwealth response to the medical indemnity crisis and reform of the medical indemnity industry, and the establishment, operation and then closure of the HIH Assistance Scheme, and worked for several years advising on Commonwealth revenue and expenditure. 

Andrew has published papers and delivered presentations on a range of topical constitutional and administrative law issues. He has previously been outposted to the Treasury and to the Department of Health, and served for some time as Client Service Manager for the Attorney-General’s Department.