Katherine Richardson SC

Silk 2016
Call 2002
Email kate.richardson@banco.net.au
Phone +61 2 8239 0266


Kate was called to the Bar in 2002, after obtaining an LL.M from Harvard Law School and practising at Sullivan & Cromwell in New York.

Kate has extensive experience in a range of private and public law litigation and has appeared in the High Court, NSW Court of Appeal, Supreme Court, Federal Court, the Land and Environment Court as well as a range of quasi-judicial and administrative tribunals. 

Kate is ranked in the Doyle's Guide (2022, 2021) as a leading Senior Counsel in Administrative and Public law in Australia. She also has particular expertise in regulatory matters, privacy, disciplinary proceedings, professional liability, environment and planning, public inquiries and coronial inquests.

Her clients have included major corporations, federal and state government Ministers and agencies, professionals of all kinds and their insurers.

Public law: Kate acts for both private parties and federal and state Ministers and agencies in administrative and constitutional cases. She argued the same-sex marriage/plebiscite case in the High Court. She regularly acts for the Attorney-General of NSW in the Supreme Court of NSW. In the Federal Court, she acts for major corporations, such as Facebook, Dell, Qantas and NAB bank, and on behalf of regulators. Kate recently argued the test case in the NSW Supreme Court that lead to the invalidation of 33,000 COVID penalty notice fines.

Regulatory matters: In regulatory matters, Kate has acted for the ACCC in civil penalty proceedings and acted for major corporations in large-scale regulatory disputes, including against the ACCC and the Australian Energy Regulator. She was lead counsel for the ACCC in successful proceedings against Google LLC in relation to its tracking and use of location data (in which Google paid a $60 million penalty).

Privacy: Kate has acted in, and advised on, a number of large privacy matters for major international corporations such as Facebook, Optus and Freelancer and regularly advises corporations on matters relating to use of data and SPAM.

Disciplinary proceedings: In disciplinary proceedings, Kate regularly acts for both the prosecution and defendants, including medical practitioners, barristers and solicitors. She recently appeared for the HCCC in disciplinary proceedings brought against prominent neurosurgeon Dr Charlie Teo.

Professional liability: Kate regularly acts for defendants in high-value medical negligence suits. She also advises numerous medical insurers in relation to insurance contractual issues and class actions.

Environment and planning: In environment and planning matters, Kate frequently appears for federal and state government Ministers and agencies, and acts for developers.

Public inquiries: Kate has extensive experience in appearing for interested parties at public inquiries. She has acted for: the Commonwealth in the Royal Commission into Aged Care; The Star Casino in the ILGA's inquiry into the Crown Casino; The Star Casino in the ILGA's inquiry into its suitability to hold a casino licence; and the Australian Federal Police at the Board of Inquiry into the Criminal Justice System (in relation to the R v Lehrmann trial).

Coronial Inquests: Kate also has wide-ranging experience in both appearing for interested parties and as Counsel Assisting in major Inquests.