firstname.lastname@example.org · PO Box 529, Ashburton VIC 3147 · Nick 03 9886 9491 · Patrick 03 9191 3470
Nick founded TP Legal in 2010. Having trained and worked as a town planner prior to embarking on his legal career, Nick has more than 20 years’ experience in the field.
His clients benefit from his ability to quickly identify the key legal and planning issues, and to guide them on the best course of action. They also appreciate Nick’s down-to-earth manner, and his ability to explain legal concepts in a straight-forward way.
Nick has an intuitive ability to read and interpret plans, and first-hand experience with a wide variety of different land uses. Nick is a very accomplished advocate, having appeared in hundreds of hearings before VCAT and Planning Panels Victoria.
Immediately prior to founding TP Legal, Nick had been a Partner at Best Hooper. Nick has particular expertise and experience in relation to:
- All kinds of residential development (including single dwellings, heritage, multi-dwellings, apartment buildings, student accommodation and boarding / rooming houses);
- Commercial and industrial development (including warehouses, factories, offices, child care centres, service stations, car washes, places of worship, medical centres, supermarkets and other retail centres, advertising signs, restaurants);
- Educational establishments;
- Rural land uses (including broiler and free range chicken farms, wind farms, shooting ranges and animal keeping);
- Applications to cancel or amend permits;
- Declaration proceedings;
- Planning enforcement (including applications for enforcement orders and prosecutions);
- Costs applications;
- Planning Scheme Amendments and Panel hearings;
- Applications for proscription of brothels under the Prostitution Control Act 1994;
- Applications to the Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation under the Gaming Regulation Act 2003.
Patrick joined TP Legal in 2013. Now with more than twenty years’ experience in the world of planning, environment and heritage law, Patrick has a detailed understanding of the legal and policy framework, and an ability to cut through to the most pertinent issues in any dispute.
Before joining TP Legal, Patrick was Managing Principal Solicitor at the Victorian Government Solicitor’s Office, responsible for advising the state government in relation to legal issues in planning, environment and heritage. Prior to that he was Special Counsel at Maddocks.
Some of Patrick’s areas of interest include planning scheme interpretation, enforcement, existing use rights, subdivision issues (including public open space contributions and development contributions), rural planning, native vegetation and ecology, renewable energy projects, and ministerial interventions. Patrick is also recognised for his expertise and experience in relation to restrictive covenants and section 173 agreements, including interpretation and variations.
Patrick also has a broader skill-set beyond those typical planning issues. These include his skills in administrative law and statutory interpretation, the development of primary and secondary legislation, Aboriginal cultural heritage, mining and extractive industries, the growth areas infrastructure contribution (GAIC) and environmental impact assessment at Federal and State levels.
Patrick is a skilled and experienced advocate, having appeared in hundreds of proceedings before VCAT, Planning Panels Victoria and other forums, and also having conducted hearings as Chair. He has also managed a range of statutory approvals associated with large government infrastructure projects.
In 2012 Patrick was awarded a Masters of Public and International Law from the University of Melbourne. His studies focused on laws in relation to the environment, natural resources, climate change and cultural heritage, both in the Australian and international context.
Patrick also speaks Spanish (advanced) and Brazilian Portuguese (intermediate). In 2012-2013 Patrick undertook a three-month internship with UNESCO, based in Havana, Cuba (which is UNESCO’s Regional Office for Culture for Latin America and the Caribbean). During this time he gained a greater understanding of the operation of various international conventions in the field of culture, including the UNESCO World Heritage Convention of 1970.
Between 2013 and 2016 Patrick served as Chair of the Planning and Local Government Committee of the Law Institute of Victoria.
Between July 2015 and June 2021 Patrick served as the Legal Member of the Heritage Council of Victoria, appointed by the Governor in Council. As part of that role, Patrick conducted hearings and made statutory decisions, including in relation to the inclusion of places on the Victorian Heritage Register, and also in relation to the grant of permits in relation to places on the Register.
Between 2019 and 2021 Patrick served as one of three co-authors of LexisNexis: Planning and Environment Victoria. Formery published by Butterworths, this is the leading and authoritative text relied on by lawyers and other practitioners specialising in planning and environmental regulation and decision-making in our State.