how laws are made

How Laws are Made, presented as two 10-minute films: Parliament and Courts, provides an overview of where Australian laws come from and how new laws are made. It is aimed at non-lawyers including public librarians, the education sector and legal assistance agencies.

The videos are also available via our YouTube channel.


The law governs our lives from the day we are born to the day we die. So where do our laws come from? This video explains how parliaments make law, explaining the process of a Bill to an Act, how legislation changes over time, why the Commonwealth makes some laws and the states others, and delegated legislation such as regulations. Also available in captioned format.


Legislation is a major source of law. Courts are the other source of law. This video explains the court hierarchy, the jurisdiction of courts and tribunals, and how courts can make new law by interpreting legislation, filling gaps in legislation, and developing the common law when there is no legislation. Also available in captioned format.


Hot Topics Live!

Refugees - 2012

Young people and crime - 2011

Warning: this video contains one instance of strong language.

Hot Topics live! Young people and crime from State Library of New South Wales on Vimeo.