Senior Solicitor
LLB (Hons), BA (Melbourne), LLM (Class I) (Cantab)

Current practice

Trina's practice comprises advisory and litigation work in matters involving constitutional law, administrative and public law and human rights  Trina’s particular interests include the protection of rights and freedoms under the Constitution and the use of proportionality in constitutional adjudication. Her clients include the Attorney-General, government departments, agencies and statutory authorities.

Experience

Trina recently acted for the State of Victoria in the High Court matter of Gerner v State of Victoria, which involved a constitutional challenge to the validity of certain emergency powers and directions made under the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008 (Vic) in response to COVID‑19, on the ground that the powers and directions were incompatible with an "implied freedom of intrastate movement". 

Prior to joining the VGSO, Trina was a senior lawyer in the Office of Constitutional Law at the Commonwealth Attorney‑General’s Department. There she worked on a variety of constitutional litigation matters, primarily in the High Court and Federal Court and in proceedings where the Commonwealth Attorney‑General intervened under s 78A of the Judiciary Act 1903 (Cth), including Palmer v Western Australia (B26/2020).

Trina has also worked as a senior lawyer at the Office of International Law at the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department, where she provided advice to a range of government clients on complex and time-sensitive issues related to Australia’s human rights treaty obligations. She also acted as the Office’s Human Rights Coordinator, which involved managing Australia’s response to complaints made against Australia to UN human rights bodies.  

Trina started her legal career at a major plaintiff law firm, where she worked on litigation in the areas of superannuation and insurance and workers’ compensation, primarily in the Supreme Court of Victoria and County Court. She has also worked as a Senior Associate at the Supreme Court of Victoria, assisting with trials in the common law division and probate list.

Trina completed a combined Bachelor of Arts and Law (First Class Honours) at the University of Melbourne. Trina also holds a Masters of Law (Class I) from the University of Cambridge, where she was ranked first in her cohort in Legal and Political Philosophy. She is currently completing a PhD in Public Law from the University of Cambridge. Trina has held teaching / research positions at the Australian National University, University of Cambridge and Melbourne University, including teaching human rights law in the Master's program at the University of Cambridge. 

Memberships and professional associations

  • Law Institute of Victoria
  • Australian Association of Constitutional Law
  • International Law Association (Australia)