Josh Underwood


Areas of Practice

  • Public and Administrative Law
  • Appellate
  • Criminal Law
  • Regulatory Law / Civil Penalties
  • Inquests
  • Commissions of Inquiry
  • Statutory Tribunals
  • Medical Negligence
  • Disciplinary Proceedings
Josh Underwood

Professional History

Josh was called to the Bar in London (Lincoln’s Inn) in 2019. He assisted Senior Counsel prosecute murder trials at the Old Bailey, appeared unled in the Crown Court and the Magistrates Court for both the prosecution and defence, and assisted on appeals and extradition matters. He joined the Brisbane Bar in 2021.

Josh graduated from The University of Queensland in 2014 with a Bachelor of Laws (First Class Honours) and a Bachelor of Arts. During university, he worked for Scott McDougall (now, the Human Rights Commissioner for Queensland) and for the Queensland Floods Commission of Inquiry.

Upon graduation, he served for 18 months as an Associate to the Hon Justice P A Keane at the High Court of Australia.

In 2015, he worked as a litigator at Ashurst in Brisbane and Sydney. He instructed Senior Counsel in cases in the High Court of Australia, the Supreme Court of Queensland (Appeal and Trial Division), and Federal Court of Australia. His practice focussed on administrative law (judicial reviews, disciplinary matters, and foreign state immunity suits), public inquiries (the Barrett Adolescent Centre Commission of Inquiry, and the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse), and medical negligence.

In 2017, he joined the Office of Director of Public Prosecutions (Qld) as a Legal Officer. He appeared in the District Court, Children’s Court, and Magistrates Court on bail applications, sentences and applications for committals with cross-examination.

In 2018, he was awarded a scholarship to study post-graduate law at The University of Oxford. He placed 2nd in his cohort and won the prize for Constitutional Law and Theory.


Date of admission as lawyer (Qld)

16 March 2015

Last call to Bar (UK)

28 November 2019

Admitted to Practise (Qld Bar)

April 2021


BCL (Distinction), University of Oxford

BA, LLB (Hons), University of Queensland

Selected Publications and Presentations

6KBW Law Blog, The impact of Coronavirus, part 5: the Coronavirus Act 2020 (with Annie Fendrich)

Seminar: “No man shall profit by his own wrong”

Seminar: Baden-Clay v R [2015] QCA 265

Seminar: PT Bayan v BCBC Singapore [2014] HCA 36

Dissertation, The Nature of the Role of the Admiralty Marshal (2014, supervised by Prof Sarah Derrington, as her Honour then was; awarded High Distinction)

Long Form CV