Kathryn was called to the Bar in 1987 and was appointed Silk in 2006. She is an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Queensland.
Kathryn is a specialist in personal injuries (particularly cases concerning complex medical evidence), public law, disciplinary matters, discrimination proceedings together with a long-established practice in family law and child protection proceedings. Commonwealth and State Governments, as well as health authorities regularly ask Kathryn to provide urgent advice on complex legal issues concerning children, medical ethics and potential claims. In 2014, she worked with Crown Law’s constitutional unit to provide advice to Dame Quentin Bryce’s Domestic Violence taskforce on various legal issues.
Kathryn has appeared in all Queensland Courts, and in the Federal Court, in relation to medical negligence claims and for health authorities in the parens patriae jurisdiction. She also regularly appears in QCAT in a number of areas including medical practitioners and other allied health professionals who have disciplinary proceedings commenced against them. Her practice in QCAT also encompasses civil & human rights/ discrimination and adult guardianship. Kathryn has appeared in many seminal cases in the Family Court and Federal Circuit Court, particularly complex cases concerning Domestic & Family Violence and Hague Convention issues. She also has familiarity with s 222 appeals from the Magistrates Court and has appeared many times in the Children’s Court.
Kathryn is a qualified Family Law Arbitrator under Reg 67B of the Family Law Act 1975 and is an accredited mediator. Kathryn regularly acts as a mediator in her key areas of expertise as well as acting for parties.
She has acted in 4 Royal Commissions/Commissions of Inquiry: the Public Hospitals Commission of Inquiry (as Counsel for the Medical Board), the Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry (as Senior Counsel Assisting), the Barrett Adolescent Centre Commission of Inquiry (as lead Counsel for a health authority) and the Royal Commission into Institutional Sex Abuse (as Queen’s Counsel for the State of Queensland).
Kathryn holds a Bachelor of Arts (German) and a Bachelor of Laws (Honours) from the University of Queensland together with a Master’s Degree in Law (BioEthics) from the Queensland University of Technology.
Kathryn holds a number of Ministerial appointments, including to: the Child Death Case Review Panel and the Domestic & Family Violence Prevention Council. She has previously served on the Anti-Discrimination Tribunal, the Psychologists Tribunal and the Mental Health Review Tribunal.
Kathryn was recognised in the 2018 Doyle’s Guide as a “leading” Queensland barrister both in the Family Law and Divorce category and the Parenting and Children’s Matters category.
Kathryn was voted 2019 Barrister of the Year in the Lawyers Weekly Women in Law Awards.