Cairns barrister John Eylander combines experience with practical and commercial approaches to dispute resolution and representation. Based in Cairns, John has accrued broad experience over more than 25 years in legal practice –

  • Appearances at trials, hearings and appeals before Supreme, District and Magistrates Courts; Federal, Family and Federal Circuit Courts; and administrative and disciplinary Tribunals (Administrative Appeals Tribunal, Qld Anti-Discrimination Commission, Qld Civil and Administrative Tribunal, Qld Industrial Relations Commission, Fair Work Commission).
  • Briefed by, and referrals from, a broad range of professionals, government, churches and religious bodies, NGOs, business groups and enterprises.
  • Legal Firm auditing, conducting inquiries and investigations.
  • Ten years of general practice experience (litigation) at multi-office and multi-disciplinary law firms.
  • Six years of experience as a government legal officer providing legal advice, reviewing legislation and policies, drafting and developing complex legal documents, conducting litigation, preparing litigation plans, interviewing witnesses, gathering evidence and drafting legal documents.
  • Mediator, for many hundreds of building and construction disputes involving developers, owners, builders, contractors, engineers and architects and private certifiers.
  • Personal injury settlement conferences.
  • Prosecutor in quasi-criminal offences and regulatory matters.
  • Member of Development Tribunal, and various sporting body tribunals.

Areas of Experience

Personal Injury

  • Workers’ compensation, motor vehicle accidents, PIPA, medical negligence, latent onset diseases and product liability claims.
  • Broad scheme sensitive and complex claim experience at trials, hearings and appeals before the Courts, Industrial Magistrates, and Qld Industrial Relations Commission.
  • State-wide practice and experience.
  • Conducted thousands of claims, reviews and appeals and Medical Assessment Tribunal appearances.
  • Previously Partner, Turner Freeman Lawyers.
  • Previously legal auditor at WorkCover Queensland.

Building and Construction and Planning and Environment

  • Member, Development Tribunal (previously Building and Development Tribunal/ Building and Development Dispute Resolution Committee) since 2009.
  • Previously Principal Legal Officer, Queensland Building Services Authority.
  • Appeared before Queensland Building Tribunal, Commercial and Consumer Tribunal and Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (hearings and appeals) in more than a thousand disputes, reviews, and disciplinary matters.
  • Previously a mediator for the Commercial and Consumer Tribunal and QCAT.
  • Appeals before Courts and Court of Appeal.
  • Security of Payment claims, enforcement and Judicial Review.
  • Planning and Environment Court matters.
  • Planning and environment enforcement matters.
  • Regulatory prosecutions and defences.
  • Private certification, professional negligence and professional responsibility and disputes.

Member of Master Builders Association, Housing Industry Association, Building Dispute Practitioners Association, Qld Environmental Lawyers Association.

Family Law

  • Recognised Family Law specialist (BAQ).
  • Briefed by ICL and Separate Representatives in childrens’ matters.
  • Domestic violence matters, child abuse and institutional abuse matters.
  • Child protection orders and Children’s Court matters.
  • Interim applications, final Hearings and Appeals.
  • Property disputes and mediations.

Member of the Family Law Practitioners Association and Law Council of Australia Family Law section

Commercial and Corporate Law

  • Retail Shop Lease, franchise, and business disputes.
  • Australian Consumer Law, product liability, sale of goods, banking and finance.
  • Professional negligence claims.
  • Employment, discrimination and unfair dismissal claims including hearings and ADR before Fair Work Commission, QIRC, ADCQ and QCAT.
  • Contracts and contractual disputes.
  • Tenders, tendering and disputes.
  • Intellectual property and copyright.
  • Debt recovery, statutory demands, insolvency, BCIPA and sub-contractor charges
  • Represented tourism operators, retailers, wholesalers and importers, builders/ sub-contractors and developers.

Employment and Human Rights

  • Employment and unfair dismissal claims including hearings and ADR before Fair Work Commission and QIRC.
  • Migration and Visa reviews and appeals.
  • Social security and SSAT, education/ training/ University regulations.
  • Anti-discrimination, human rights and equal opportunity, and sexual harassment matters.
  • Qld Anti-Discrimination Commission conciliation, QCAT proceedings, Federal Circuit Court proceedings.

Property Law

  • REIQ contracts, agent’s commission litigation, mortgagee sale, Property Law Act.
  • Sub-division litigation and planning matters.
  • Native title and leases.
  • Planning and environment, Council enforcement and administrative matters.
  • Easements, trespass, and compensation.

Administrative Law

  • Internal reviews of administrative decisions, preparation of submissions and negotiations.
  • Appeals of decisions before the AAT, QCAT, QIRC and judicial review.
  • Right to Information.
  • Government contracts and tenders.
  • Weapons licensing, blue cards and reviews and appeals of administrative decisions.
  • Disciplinary matters, licensing, and regulatory matters involving building, real estate agents and motor dealers, environment and heritage, communities, child safety, disability services, education, health.
  • Agriculture and rural matters.
  • Maritime and fisheries.
  • Local government regulations and enforcement proceedings.


  • Reputational damage to persons and business.
  • Represented builders, professionals, body corporates and individuals.
  • Defamation Act advice, pleadings and interlocutory appearances.
  • Reputational damage arising from administrative actions.


  • Insurance Contracts Act matters.
  • Professional negligence claims involving lawyers, doctors/hospitals and allied health, engineers, architects, private certifiers, and building inspectors.
  • Home warranty insurance claims and disputes.
  • TPD and superannuation litigation.
  • Motor vehicle, aircraft, machinery and bicycle insurance claims.
  • Life insurance and insurance policy claims.

Police Matters

  • Traffic offences and regulatory matters.
  • Magistrates Court prosecutions, defence and pleas.
  • Animal Care and Protection Act matters.
  • Domestic Violence proceedings.
  • Inquests and Coronial matters.
  • Victims of crime.
  • Criminal Confiscations.

Sports Law

  • Representation at disciplinary tribunals.
  • Advice on regulation and governance.
  • Insurance, indemnity, liability, and accident claims.
  • Recreational sport and tourism activities.
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