Strategic Team

Our People

We don't settle for any less than the best

Our Team Leaders

JUSTIN IRELAND

JUSTIN IRELAND

PRINCIPAL LAWYER

With a background working for large corporate law firms Justin knows all too well what it looks like when businesses put profits ahead of people. And when he took the leap and decided to start his own firm he knew he wanted to do things differently. Moving back to Townsville – a city he grew up in – meant his first thoughts turned to offering locals legal services in a way which ensured they got value for money. Over time he’s successfully built a culture that fosters innovation, reform and creativity while always putting clients first. Given his background and experience he’s also happy to go toe-to-toe with anyone, no matter how big. Justin is the sort of bloke who is always doing something, but, there’s nothing he treasures more than down-time with his young family or the office mascot and beloved dog Allie. Justin loves drinking coffee to kick-start day but says there’s nothing as good as a nice, dry champagne to mark the big moments and the wins.

ROBERT BALLAIS

ROBERT BALLAIS

FAMILY LAWYER

Starting with us as a paralegal, when he was a student at James Cook University, today Robert is our key family lawyer. But for the most part we look at him as our own personal office comedian. “You know when sports people say it’s not about the end result it’s about the journey?” Rob asks. “Well, family law is basically the opposite of that. “I live for the happy moment when I get to ring clients and tell them everything is sorted, this is all finished and you can move on with your life.” If you really want to get him talking just ask him about the NBA – but be prepared for a lengthy discussion. A North-Queensland local Rob grew up in a family with close connections to the prawn industry – something which has turned him off the tasty crustaceans for life. Rob’s not a big drinker but we have a bottle of good whiskey in the office which we drink from to mark the firm’s big wins and when pressed Rob said these were his favourite drinks.

ANTHONY STURGEON

ANTHONY STURGEON

SENIOR LAWYER

Anthony came to us from one of the country’s biggest law firms after seeing the value in our philosophy. As our senior lawyer Anthony has experience in several areas including criminal law, compensation law and commercial disputes. “When you see the whole force of the state or a large company bearing down on one person and you’re able to help them; it’s satisfying to know you’ve done your job,” he said. Anthony loves details and he has a quick and immaculate knowledge of the law – he’s the man we turn to when the answer is hard-to-find and he’s the man you need for any technical legal matter. A Mackay boy by origin Anthony loves politics and has an exceptional knowledge of current affairs – mention any political scandal, regardless of age get ready for the full rundown of who said what and when. He is also a major movie buff and loves a good comic book…or seven and there’s few things he loves more than a strong gin and tonic.

STEVE HODGSON

STEVE HODGSON

COMMERCIAL LAWYER & MIGRATION AGENT

If your business is in trouble with the law, Steve is the man you want to call. A commercial litigation gun, he’s brought many people back from the brink of bankruptcy. “In a way we’re the firefighters that come in when things are going badly,” Steve said. “People come in and often their affairs are in a huge mess, or they’re in trouble with ATO, through no real fault of their own. “I enjoy fighting for these people and helping them get a good result and wherever possible, helping them get their life back on track.” When he’s not fighting the good fight, Steve enjoys a fit and healthy lifestyle. Keep an eye out for him on the basketball and beach volleyball courts. Steve’s favourite drink is a melon-ball – as long as it’s made with plenty of vodka. He likes watching television and questions about Rick & Morty, Scrubs or the Twilight Zone are sure to get him talking. And if he’s not keeping fit there is one thing we all know Steve will be chasing – it’s the tastiest hotdog in town.

FRANCINA DE CHAZAL

FRANCINA DE CHAZAL

ACCOUNTS MANAGER  / BOOK KEEPER

Francina, or Anci as she’s known here in the office, is one of our most vital team members, ensuring everything goes to plan in regards to accounts. She was once an auditor and holds an accountancy qualification with more than ten years experience. Today Anci is our outstanding in-house accounts clerk. There are few things financial Anci isn’t able to get across and you can have confidence that she keeps an eye on your bills and make sure they’re on point – decimal point that is. Her experience and attention to detail is second to none – similar to her cooking, she loves cooking and we can all agree here that she’s great at it! Originally from Pretoria in South Africa Anci came to Australia in 2001 and along with her family, settled on Magnetic Island. Long-term locals will remember Café Africa at Picnic Bay where Anci served amazing crepes and other specialties. While she loves her work there’s nothing more Anci loves than a glass of good red wine at the end of the day.

Casey Wilson

CASEY WILSON

LEGAL SECRETARY

In one way or another everything at our firm has to go-by Casey. She keeps the business organised and ensures everything is running on-time and in the most efficient way possible. “Everyone who comes through our door is, in one way another, looking to better their life – or ensure a better future,” she said. “It’s nice seeing people come back time and again and keep getting a better result.” When she’s not at work Casey loves hitting the gym and spending time with her new husband and beloved pug. Casey is one of those people who always surprises you with hidden knowledge and talents and whenever she sets her mind to something the result is incredible. She’s worked in a number of different industries and is great at organising things – just ask our paralegals who Casey trains and oversees. Having grown up right on the beach, in the Burdekin, Casey is a genuine North-Queensland local with a wealth of useful knowledge – just get her talking. Casey’s favourite drink is a rum and coke.

Ben Watt

BEN WATT

LAWYER & MIGRATION AGENT

Ben is an Australian lawyer, having been admitted before the Supreme Court of Queensland in 2013 and is a Registered Migration Agent with nearly six years of experience in the migration industry. If you are an employer or individual looking to secure a permanent or temporary business, skilled residential or student visa, Ben can provide comprehensive advice and assistance in navigating Australia’s complex migration program.

A few Reasons Why We are one of

Townsville's Most Effective Law Firms

We believe you are here for a reason. And that reason is to ensure you get the best legal help possible, at the best possible price.

Here at Strategic Lawyers Townsville we’re experts in striking good bargains, but the most important bargain for us, is the one we strike with our clients.

Our offer is simple. We’ll ensure you know what’s going on. We’ll advise you on your best interests and we’ll never give up on your cause.

This means together we’ll reach the best outcome possible. Our people live in this community and we’ve been here a good while.

As such we know how important it is not only that you leave here satisfied but that you’ll recommend us. Call us now on 13 14 LAW and speak to a lawyer about your case.

Contact Us

Read About Us in the Media

45 Five Star Reviews and counting

Tammie Cant, 2018

Strategic Lawyers was recommended to me by a close friend and I was extremely happy with my experience. I first met with Justin to discuss my family law matter then I began to also work with Rob. Both gentlemen were extremely professional, thorough and supportive in their roles, keeping me constantly updated on the progress of my matter. I would recommend Strategic Lawyers to everyone requiring assistance with family law matters. Thank you to the team at Strategic Lawyers 🙂

Tim Lorger, Local Guide, 2017

Best in town

Jerry Manson, 2018

would highly recommend using Strategic Lawyers if you need representation in Townsville. I was represented by Anthony Sturgeon, and from the first consult till the closing case I felt comfortable and guided through the whole journey. My case was a criminal matter and having had no prior encounters of this nature I was very overwhelmed by the situation. Anthony is very professional and attentive to all your needs, especially when dealing with the law for the first time. Thanks to everyone at the firm.

Ryan Coleridge, 2018

A sincere thank you to Steve Hodgson and Justin Ireland for their hard work and professionalism during a difficult period. They not only allayed my concerns but were able to obtain an outcome beyond my expectations. I highly recommend them to anyone seeking legal advice.

Donnie Jones, 2018

Ben Watt and the team at Strategic Lawyers, went above and beyond to help my son and I. As such we were rewarded with a positive outcome. Can’t thank the team enough for their time, attention to detail and most of all their concern for our matter. Excellent service provided by all.

Jason Jackson, 2018

If you want a team of lawyers totally committed to your case, look no further. Their track record is great. They always get good outcomes for me and I always feel like I have great legal representation with them. They definitely communicate with me better than other law firms out there, and they take the time to listen to what I have to say and for me to get my story out in full. They’re not just interested in a pay check – they definitely care about me, my case, and my success. I definitely highly recommend these guys as they always achieve great results for me no matter what the case.

Sarah Myers, 2017

If you want someone to really fight for you, then look no further. I chose Strategic Lawyers because of their Fixed Prices, their friendly team and their passion. They were the bulldog in my corner when I needed it most. They won the case for me. I highly recommend them!

David Luke, 2019

Very professional and compassionate. From the first consultation I could tell they genuinely cared about me and my situation. Their communication was outstanding. The best law firm I’ve ever dealt with.

Val Waszkiewicz, 2018

I think the fix fee is brilliant. No nasty surprises at payment time. The staff are friendly and very helpful and speak in a language that you can understand clearly. I would recommend their services to anyone

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Latest News from Our Blog

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  • How the Family Court Decides Who Gets What in a Separation or Divorce

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  • Changes to Family Law Act Ban Cross-Examination of Alleged DV victims by Self Represented Litigants

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  • Your Child’s Rights if They Are Accused of a Crime

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  • Spent Conviction Legislation in Qld

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    Under Queensland’s Criminal Law (Rehabilitation of Offenders) Act 1986 certain criminal convictions can become a spent conviction which means they are removed from a person’s criminal record after a set period-of-time has passed. The timeframes for when a criminal conviction becomes a spent conviction depend on the court the person appeared in and the sentence […]

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  • Your Rights if Your Ex is Withholding Your Child

    Your Rights if Your Ex is Withholding Your Child

    The purpose of this blog post is to explain your legal rights if your partner is preventing you from seeing your children. In family law it is in fact very common to see one parent unlawfully withholding access to children from another.   It Is in the Best Interests of Your Child to Maintain a […]

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  • Hidden Truth about Government’s New Immigration Laws

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    The Federal Government’s proposed changes to the Migration Act 1958 (Cth) are no doubt popular with the segment of the Australian public who are keen to see foreign citizens who have been convicted of criminal offences have their visas revoked. However, there is a hidden truth behind these changes which it is important for the […]

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  • What Gets Our Lawyers Out of Bed

    What Gets Our Lawyers Out of Bed

    Here at Strategic we have recently began profiling our staff and putting together short pieces explaining what motivates them to do their jobs. The first two lawyers we profiled were our key family lawyer Robert Ballais and our criminal lawyer Anthony Sturgeon. Over the coming weeks we will be profiling our other legal professionals and […]

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