Melinda Pugh

Deputy Crown Solicitor

Melinda has emerged as our leading lawyer in the fields of commercial and corporate governance law since joining Crown Law in 2003. In 2011, Melinda was appointed to lead the Commercial and Property Team. As an Assistant Crown Solicitor, Melinda takes instructions – often at short notice – on high-level commercial matters of a complex and sensitive nature. 

Melinda’s key expertise is her strategic advice and guidance on matters related to government business, particularly where they involve complex regulatory, competition or statutory interpretation issues. In 2013, Melinda led the team representing the State of Queensland before both the Queensland Health Payroll System Commission of Inquiry and the Queensland Racing Commission of Inquiry.

Melinda has been practicing law since 1989 in both the public and private sectors. Immediately prior to joining Crown Law, Melinda gained a solid reputation in health law during her 10 years with Queensland Health. In private practice, Melinda was responsible for the management and operations of a busy legal branch office.

  • Leading the teams representing the State of Queensland before the Queensland Health Payroll System Commission of Inquiry and the Queensland Racing Commission of Inquiry.
  • Drafting contracts and other legal documents including consultancy contracts, service agreements, standing offer arrangements, sponsorship agreements, funding agreements, licences, settlement deeds and letters of engagement.
  • Reviewing and advising on the streamlining and implementation of water reforms as recommended in the Webbe-Weller review of government boards, committees and statutory authorities.
  • Working as a member of the Queensland Liability Insurance Policy Taskforce to develop and implement tort reforms leading to the introduction of the Personal Injuries Proceedings Act 2002 and the Civil Liability Act 2003.
  • Acting as the instructing officer in relation to a High Court appeal over damages resulting from a doctor’s negligence during a sterilisation procedure including advising the General Manager, Health Services about proposed settlement of the litigation and drafting instructions for subsequent legislative reform.
  • Advising on:
    • the application of the Competition and Consumer Act 2012 to various government activities including in relation to government dealings with the company that caused a major oil spill in Moreton Bay and on the introduction of the new Australian Consumer Law
    • potential conflicts of interest that may arise for directors of companies who are also public servants
    • public sector compliance issues and legislation and government policies that impact on the proper performance of duties by public servants and others
    • matters related to electricity pricing and the National Electrical Law
    • the Attorney-General’s powers in relation to letters patent
    • advising and representing the Attorney-General in relation to charitable trust matters
    • the endorsement contract and guarantees for the Commonwealth Games 2018
    • governance issues for government entities including the application of the Corporations Act 2001, and drafting board charters, meeting minutes and instruments of delegation
    • private practice arrangements for Queensland Health doctors and requirements of the Health Insurance Act 1973 and the Australian Health Reform Agreement
    • the legislative framework and contractual arrangements for the introduction of recycled water in Queensland.
  • Advising on and preparing government tenders, grants and Commonwealth/State agreements.
  • Drafting and advising on template documents for the whole-of-government supply arrangements and standard contract conditions for the Office of Queensland Chief Government Procurement Officer.
  • Drafting and advising on guarantees and indemnities.
  • Advising on business structures for government enterprises such as associations, statutory bodies and joint ventures.
  • Drafting and advising on employment contracts for senior officers and contracts under s. 122 of the Public Service Act 2008.
  • Advising on the accountability of officers in the public sector with a particular focus on business and commercial issues.