Partner - Planning & Environment

Location: Brisbane
Discipline: partner & special counsel
Job type: Permanent
Salary: Highly Attractive $'s based on Industry Profile
Contact name: Craig Ashton-Sward

Contact email:
Job ref: PEP240524
Published: 29 days ago
  • Planning & Environment Partner
  • Lateral Appointment to a Collegiate Partnership
  • Resourceful National Law Firm on Local, State, and Commonwealth Government Panels
  • Rem Circa $350K+ Bonuses (SP), to $1.2M++ (EP)
  • Deferred Start Negotiable
Law Staff has been engaged by the Board of this resourceful national legal practice to assist with its strategic growth plans for the Brisbane office.


This is a firm with a deep level of technical capability, strong corporate connections, while also being a relatively young and highly cohesive partnership. 

It has an exceptionally positive and collaborative culture that permeates the business at every level, lead from the top and reinforced by management that is in tune with every individual in every department.

They have had outstanding success over the last decade with unrivalled growth and a 99% retention rate, as well as being strong advocates for work-life-balance and flexible work practices, regardless of gender.

The Board is keen to continue this growth with another Partner appointment to the Brisbane office, with this person joining their established Planning & Environment team. 

The firm is seeking a Partner with strong leadership and client relationship management skills to join this sizeable team, including practitioners recognised for their technical capability in this area of practice. You will support their Property, Government, and Major Projects teams on an advisory and transactional level, as well as contribute to the national P&E team. You can therefore expect a mix of work including:
  • Front End Advisory - planning and development advice including applications for rezoning and development; reviewing planning schemes and scheme policies; environment management and compliance as well as remediation plans for water and natural resource matters; native vegetation and threatened species considerations; contaminated land and environmental compliance issues; land assembly and compulsory acquisition; waste management; planning and environmental due diligence; as well as contributing to the preparation and negotiation of infrastructure agreements;
  • Litigious - relating to valuation appeals; licensing; Planning and Environment Court appeals and declaratory proceedings; Land Court litigation; environment contamination and incident management issues; vegetation protection orders and other environmental enforcement.


Over the course of your 10-20 years post-admission career, you will have developed a strong profile as a dedicated Planning & Environment Lawyer. There is an expectation that a fair portion of your experience will have been recently obtained within Brisbane in a specialist firm, a mid-tier, or a large national practice.

Indicative of this is your ability to demonstrate your industry profile by way of existing relationships at various levels within the commercial arena and or government. Your profile and technical skills will assist in the development of this practice whilst leveraging off the firm’s already strong developer client base as well as their Local, State and Commonwealth Government clients. 
In addition, you will have well-developed team management skills and a high level of commercial acumen and a strong client focus.

This is a lateral appointment into Partnership. For entry level Partners they offer generous salaries plus bonuses on modest KPI's. For Equity Partners their earnings are well in excess of industry benchmarks without the need to compromise on prestige or resources.
While other firms are cost-shedding to maintain their profit pool, this firm maintains an extensive local and national back-office infrastructure that underpins the very success of each Partner. During Covid-19 they have maintained a seamless transition to working remotely, and have exceeded their budget during and after lockdown.

In challenging times, there has been the need for law firms to recalibrate in order to maintain a competitive advantage and a sustainable profit pool for its partners. Those that have managed this have emerged as magnets to other partners looking to transition their clients to a more innovative and profitable platform.

With 30 years as specialist consultants to the legal profession, Law Staff has an impressive history of facilitating discreet moves for partners (and whole teams) to specialist, mid or top tier practices, all while providing critical intelligence on:
  • Individual profitability of the relevant firms;
  • Partnership structures and equity distribution;
  • Strategic growth plans;
  • Intra/Cross practice compatibility;
  • Historical transitions;
  • Performance expectations; as well as
  • Partnership culture and idiosyncrasies (trust us when we say that no one firm is perfect).
In addition, our Senior Client Advisors have assisted hundreds of partners in writing detailed business plans that identify only relevant information including key practice components as well as transitioning requirements, and less of the white noise. We advise you when the appropriate time is to table this information to ensure your commercial interests are preserved. Most importantly, we will only ever confer with the relevant Managing Partner after you have done your research and at a time when you have expressed in writing that you are ready to take that cautious next step. Absolutely everything stays in the vault until that time. A list of partner references can be made available at your request.


We offer a meeting over Zoom, Teams or FaceTime, as well as offer a contactless meeting in a lounge room setting for a relaxed confidential discussion over coffee/tea, allowing you to comfortably provide us with an understanding of your considerations in that next move. 

For a uncompromisingly confidential discussion, please quote REF: PEP240524 and contact either:

  • Craig Ashton-Sward
  • 0413 743 838 (8.00am to 8.00pm 7 days)
  • Trudy Reading (Senior Client Advisor)
  • 0401 504 203 (8:00 am to 8:00 pm 7 days)
Feel free to maintain your anonymity in the first instance if you choose.
LawStaff | Level 22 HSBC Building | 300 Queen Street | Brisbane