Australian Government Solicitor

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Australian Government Solicitor (AGS) is a Commonwealth government agency established to provide legal services to the Government of Australia and its agencies.

AGS was originally the Crown Solicitor's Office which was established on 1 July 1903 on the appointment of Charles Powers as the first Commonwealth Crown Solicitor. With a major restructure of the Attorney-General's Department in 1983-4, the Crown Solicitor's Office became the Office of the Australian Government Solicitor, with acting Crown Solicitor Tom Sherman appointed the first Australian Government Solicitor. Some functions of the Crown Solicitor's Office were transferred to other parts of the Attorney-General's Department. In 1999, the Australian Government Solicitor ceased being an office held by an individual, and instead became a government business enterprise, headed by a CEO, separate from the Attorney-General's Department.

Some Commonwealth legal work, including constitutional law, is 'tied' work that only AGS is able to perform as solicitor on behalf of the Commonwealth.

List of office-holders[edit]

Individuals who have served as Commonwealth Crown Solicitor, Australian Government Solicitor or CEO of AGS are:

  • Charles Powers (1903-1913)[1]
  • Gordon Castle (1913-1927)[2]
  • William Sharwood (1927-1936)[3]
  • Fred Whitlam (1936-1949)[4]
  • Keith Waugh (1949-1951)[5]
  • David Bell (1951-1955)[6]
  • Harry Renfree (1955-1970)[7]
  • Bob Hutchison (1970-1975)
  • Alan Neaves (1975-1979)
  • Brian O'Donovan (1979-1983)
  • Tom Sherman (1983-1989)
  • Stephen Skehill (1989-1990)
  • John Pyne (1990-1993)
  • Dale Boucher (1993-1999)
  • Rayne de Gruchy (1999-2010)
  • Ian Govey (2010-present)


See also[edit]

External links[edit]