Michael Spencer | Special Counsel

Michael is a litigation lawyer whose practice focuses on legal issues associated with health, the elderly, death and government.

He was named in the list of leading South Australian health and aged care lawyers published by Doyle’s Guide in 2020.

Michael acts for retirement villages, aged care facilities and hospitals in relation to government regulation and also disputes and claims involving their residents or patients. He also acts in disputes involving deceased estates (including inheritance claims), disputes over the inter-generational succession of family businesses, situations where elderly persons have been the victims of financial abuse, disputes over government decisions and other legal disputes.

Michael graduated from The University of Adelaide with a Bachelor of Science (Honours) and a Bachelor of Laws (Honours). He was admitted as a barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of South Australia and the High Court of Australia in 2002. He was also admitted as a solicitor in England and Wales in 2006.

His experience in health law includes representing doctors and dentists in Adelaide, working as the in-house litigation lawyer for the largest private hospital group in London and working in private practice in London representing public hospitals across England and Wales. He has also worked as a risk manager for a public hospital in Adelaide and as a government lawyer in Adelaide, where he predominantly represented public hospitals and other health entities in civil litigation and inquests.

In addition, Michael has been a government lawyer in London where he acted in a wide range of civil litigation and inquests before moving into a team which defended judicial reviews of government decisions, acting predominantly for the Cabinet Office, the Department of Health and the Department for Work and Pensions.

Upon his return home to Adelaide, Michael led the team of government lawyers at Public Trustee. His work there included acting in complex deceased estate disputes and guardianship and administration cases as well as in a broad range of legal matters concerning customers who were subject to Public Trustee’s protection. He also advised Public Trustee on corporate matters.

Michael joined O’Loughlins Lawyers in 2018 and his broad experience has equipped him with the knowledge and skills to deal with a wide range of legal problems, disputes and litigation.

Principal Areas of Practice

  • Health and Aged Care
  • Retirement Villages
  • Estate Disputes
  • Elder Law
  • Civil Litigation
  • Guardianship and Administration
  • Inquests and Inquiries
  • Government

Professional Memberships

Michael's memberships include:

  • Law Society of South Australia
  • Civil Litigation Committee of the Law Society of South Australia
  • Law Society of England and Wales
  • Southern Adelaide Clinical Human Research Ethics Committee (which covers Flinders Medical Centre and Flinders University)


+61 8 8111-4000