Victor Kline started his working life as a federal prosecutor in Sydney, having been admitted to the bar in 1974. He later worked as a barrister in the Northern Territory. He is currently Editor of the Federal Court Reports and Federal Law Reports, having held those positions since 1990 and 1995 respectively. In 2016 he returned to active practice at the Sydney bar. He is founder and director of the Refugee Law Project, and member of the National Executive of TNL. Victor is also a published author and playwright, and has worked extensively as an actor, theatre director and producer in Australia and in New York City.
Areas of Interest
Administrative Appeals Tribunal
CQX18 v Minister for Home Affairs  FCCA 2 – Federal Circuit Court of Australia (to be reported in the Federal Law Reports)
CQX18 v Minister for Home Affairs  FCAFC 142 – Federal Court of Australia (Full Court – Allsop CJ, Perry & Gleeson JJ)
DTP17 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (2019) 343 FLR 121 – Federal Circuit Court of Australia
ALR17 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (2018) 340 FLR 306 – Federal Circuit Court of Australia
CLV16 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (S165/2018) – High Court of Australia (Special Leave to Appeal: Gageler and Gordon JJ)
Minister for Immigration and Border Protection v EEI17 (2018) 261 FCR 461 – Federal Court of Australia (Full Court).
Plaintiff S111/2017 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (2018) 263 FCR 310 – Federal Court of Australia (Full Court)
SZROZ v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (No 2) (2018) 332 FLR 403 – Federal Circuit Court of Australia
Minister for Home Affairs v SZRWS (2018) 254 FCR 163 – Federal Court of Australia (Full Court)
SZROZ v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (2018) 330 FLR 439 – Federal Circuit Court of Australia
SZRWS v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (2017) 328 FLR 354 – Federal Circuit Court of Australia
BLD15 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (2017) 245 FCR 1 – Federal Court of Australia.
CDX16 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (2016) 313 FLR 331 – Federal Circuit Court of Australia
BFM16 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (2016) 310 FLR 257 – Federal Circuit Court of Australia
Kline v Director-General of the Department of Community Services (1995) 125 FLR 196 – Family Court of Australia
Re K (1995) 36 NSWLR 477 – Supreme Court of New South Wales
Re CN & MG Infants (1976) 9 ALR 666 – Supreme Court of the Northern Territory
Gibson v Arnold (1976) 10 ALR 509 – Supreme Court of the Northern Territory
Victor started his law reporting career in the early 1980s when he worked as a reporter on the Australian Law Reports, the Australian Criminal Reports and the Family Law Reports. For a brief time, whilst in the U.K., he also worked as a reporter on the Law Reports of the Commonwealth.
In 1986, though he was not a South Australian practitioner, he was asked to fill in as Editor of the South Australian State Reports, following the retirement of the long serving Ralph Haigh. In the end Victor continued as Editor for over two years and oversaw the production of Volumes 43-49. He was the second Editor of the SASRs.
In 1990 he was appointed Editor of the Federal Court Reports, which are the authorised reports of the Federal Court of Australia. He was the third editor of the FCRs, beginning at Volume 20.
As at 1 March 2023 (with Volume 293 soon to go into production), Victor has thus overseen the production of 273 volumes.
In 1995 he was also appointed Editor of the companion Federal Law Reports. He has been Editor of that series, as at 1 March 2023, from Volume 118 through Volume 371, a total of 252 Volumes. His overall output as a law reports editor is 525 volumes, making him far and away the most prolific law reports editor in Australian jurisprudential history.
See Victor’s video interview on the subject of the authorized Federal Court Reports on the Thomson Reuters’ Law Reports flagship page: here.
See also the forward to Volume 224 of the Federal Court Reports by The Honourable Chief Justice James Allsop, AO: here.
// Thomson Reuters Author Update – March 2015 //
Federal Court Reports marks an editorial anniversary
We celebrated a special anniversary in February, with barrister Victor Kline marking 25 years as Editor of the authorised Federal Court Reports, published by Thomson Reuters.
The company recognised the occasion at an event attended by Mr Kline and his partner Katharine, the Hon Justice Steven Rares of the Federal Court, Professor Joellen Riley, Dean of Law at the University of Sydney, Commercial Director Carl Olson, Federal Court reporters and Thomson Reuters law reports staff.
Mr Kline has now edited more than 200 volumes of the respected FCRs.
His anniversary comes at a time when courts and judges – some via strict practice directions – are emphasising the importance of corrected, authorised decisions (complete with erudite headnotes).
In an interview last year, Victor Kline said authorised reports were an essential part of our common law system. The FCRs are the repository and historical record of judge-made law in its jurisdiction, he said, “no more, no less”.
The head of that jurisdiction, The Honourable Chief Justice James Allsop AO, has paid tribute to Mr Kline’s long service and dedication in Volume 224 of the Reports. In his foreward, Chief Justice Allsop noted the increasing volume of legal matters being filed in the Federal Court. He cited a “continuing and growing” need for the dedicated, authorised reports of the Court.
In highlighting the value that such reports provide to practitioners, his Honour quoted Sir Walter Scott (from 1815):
“A lawyer without history or literature is a mechanic, a mere working mason; if he possesses some knowledge of these, he may venture to call himself an architect.”
Sydney Boys’ High 1964-1969
University of Sydney Law School 1970-1973
Admitted as Barrister Supreme Court NSW 1974
Admitted Barrister and Solicitor Supreme Court NT 1975
Admitted Barrister and Solicitor High Court of Australia 1976
Prosecutions Department, Commonwealth Deputy Crown Solicitor, Sydney, Jan 1974- September 1975
House Counsel, Paul Everingham & Co, Alice Springs & Darwin, September 1975-September 1976.
Senior Legal Officer, Australian Legal Aid Office, Alice Springs, September 1976-December 1978. Acting Principal Legal Officer and Officer-in-Charge, April 1977-October 1977.
Private Bar (NSW) 2016 – Continuing
Director, Refugee Law Project 2018 – Continuing
Commissioning Editor, Butterworths, April 1980-September 1983
Managing Editor, Law Book Company, September 1983-January 1990.
Reporter Australian Law Reports 1980-1983
Reporter The Family Law Reports 1980-1983
Reporter Australian Criminal Reports 1982
Reporter Law Reports of the Commonwealth (UK) 1986
Editor South Australian State Reports 1986-1988. Volumes 43- 49
Editor Federal Court Reports 1990 – Continuing.
Editor Federal Law Reports 1995 – Continuing.
The Macquarie Book of Events (Non-fiction – Contributor). Published 1983
Golden Dagger Mysteries (Short Stories – Contributor). Published 1993.
Rough Justice (Novel). Published 1994. Republished 2013
The House at Anzac Parade (Memoir). Published 2014
42 Avenue of the Americas (Novel) Published 2015
New South Wales Bar Association
New South Wales Bar Association – Human Rights Committee Member
Australian Lawyers for Human Rights
The New Liberals (Party Leader)
The Walter Reid Memorial Prize, for Academic Merit, University of Sydney, 2010
The George Arnold Wood Memorial Prize, for First in History, University of Sydney, 2011
The AE (Tony) Cahill History Prize, for Best Student in Late Modern History, University of Sydney, 2011.
The Walter Reid Memorial Prize, for Academic Merit, University of Sydney, 2011
The Road Back from Kafka’s Castle: Towards a Better System of Visa Application and Review in Australia (Alternative Law Journal, Melbourne, 2018)
Acting, Theatre Directing, Singing, Playwriting, Theatre Reviewing, Cricket, Swimming, Tennis, Reading