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Insurance Law Prize
Nominees include insurers, reinsurers, adjusters, brokers, consultants, academics, judges and lawyers.


2014 AILA Awards Announced

During the National Conference held in Queensland we proudly announced the winners of the 2014 AILA awards.

The Honourable Dr Desmond Derrington QC was awarded a life membership and Richard Douglas QC was awarded the insurance law prize. Both recipients join a long list of previous high-profile winners within the insurance law industry and we extend our congratulations to both.

Here we provide some career details as to why this years recipients received the honours:

Life Membership – The Honourable Dr Desmond Derrington QC

Award definition from the Corporate Management Guidelines:

A person who has made a significant contribution to AILA or to the field of insurance law

Completed a Bachelor of Laws at University of Queensland in 1954

  • 16 December 1954, was admitted as a barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland, and commenced a period of practice at the bar in Rockhampton (1954-1966).
  • In 1966, commenced practice at the bar in Brisbane, taking silk on 14 March 1974. He served as vice president of the Bar Association of Queensland (1978–81).
  • 3 December 1982, was appointed a judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland.
  • Served as president of the Land Appeal Court (1985–87), president of the Mental Health Tribunal (1992–94) and as a member of the Medical Assessment Tribunal (1988-89).
  • Served as a member of the board of the Law Faculty at the University of Queensland (1990-1992) and chairman of the Supreme Court Library Committee (1994–97).
  • Recipient of a Medal of Honour of the Association Internationale de Droit des Assurances 1994) and was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws from the University of Queensland (2000).
  • Awarded the AILA Insurance Law Prize in 1997.
  • Retired from the court, at the age of 70, on 5 April 2000.
  • Then served as an adjunct professor at the University of Queensland (from 2000), lectured in law at both Griffith University and Queensland University of Technology and became a visiting judge at Bond University. He was also consultant editor of CCH Insurance Law Reporter (from 2002). Admitted to the Supreme Court of NSW in 1970, High Court of Australia in 1975 and Supreme Court of Victoria in 1991.


Insurance Law Prize – Richard Douglas QC

Award definition from the Corporate Management Guidelines:

A person who has made substantial contributions to the insurance industry or insurance law. Without limiting the categories from which such persons may be nominated, they include insurers, reinsurers, adjusters, brokers, consultants, academics, judges and lawyers

Admitted to the Bar in 1980 and commenced practice in 1982 after working as a law clerk in Townsville, NQ.

  • Appointed Senior Counsel in and for the State of Queensland in 1998
  • Appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2013
  • Practices in Queensland and interstate.
  • Areas of specialty are insurance, common law and statutory liability, commercial law, commercial vendor and purchaser, real property and confiscation of criminal profits.
  • From 2009 to 2011 was President of the Bar Association of Queensland, a director of the Law Council of Australia and member of the board of the Australian Bar Association.
  • Chair of the Bar Association of Queensland workers’ compensation committee.
  • Chair of a stakeholder reference group appointed by the Queensland Attorney General which reported to the Queensland government in early July 2004 as to options available to homogenise Queensland pre-proceeding personal injury process regimes.
  • Co-Senior Counsel assisting the 2005 Queensland Public Hospitals Commission of Inquiry conducted by Hon Geoffrey Davies AO.
  • Appeared in many of the leading cases construing the pre-procedural and civil liability legislation of Queensland.
  • Joint author of a text Douglas, Mullins and Grant Annotated Civil Liability Legislation Queensland published by LexisNexis. The third edition was published in September 2012.
  • Joint author of and principal contributor to Australian Civil Liability, a national loose-leaf and electronic LexisNexis service treating the civil liability legislation of the Commonwealth, states and territories.
  • Member of the editorial board of, and contributor to the Civil Liability newsletter also published by LexisNexis.
  • Member of the Medico-Legal Society of Queensland (currently junior vice-president), the Australian Insurance Lawyers Association, the Commercial Law Association and the Australian Lawyers Alliance.
  • Certified mediator.


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