Class Actions: Ones to watch – New South Wales Court of Appeal holds firm on soft class closure

By: Amanda Beattie and Samantha Younane At a glance The NSW Court of Appeal has confirmed that existing authority is not “plainly wrong” and that soft class closure orders cannot be made in the NSW Supreme Court. The decision confirms that the position in New South Wales diverges from that in the Victorian and the Federal […]

Federal Court hands down the first unfair contracts term decision for insurance contracts

By: Cain Jackson, Edward O’Brien and Samantha Younane Introduction Almost 3 years after the unfair contract terms (UCT) regime1 was expanded to “consumer”2 and “small business”3 insurance contracts, the decision of Australian Securities and Investments Commission v Auto & General Insurance Company Limited4 provides some guidance and clarity as to how the UCT provisions operate in an insurance context. […]

Promoting diversity through flexible public holidays

By: Sian Gilbert, Dexter Cabal and Rebekah Johnson At a glance A growing number of Australian workplaces are now offering flexible public holidays to recognise the diverse backgrounds, cultures and values of employees. These holidays are offered in lieu of public holidays currently on the calendar. However, there are limitations around this initiative depending on the […]

Lithium-ion battery risk update: potential first fatalities in NSW

By: Jonathan Maher and Aisha Lala In this short update we note that NSW authorities are reporting what are believed to be the first fatalities related to lithium-ion battery fires. If confirmed, this tragedy underscores the growing concerns around the risk posed by lithium-ion batteries, and the potential insurance implications. The incident On 29 February […]

Advance Care Directives (Review) Amendment Act 2023

By: Chris Spain and Trudi-Ann Mercurio At a glance The Advance Care Directives (Review) Amendment Act 2023 (SA) came into effect on 1 March 2024. The Act amended the Advance Care Directives Act 2013 (SA), following a review undertaken by Professor Wendy Lacey in 2019. The Act provides health practitioners with clarification as to the […]

Class Actions: Ones to watch – Soft class closure – is it back?

By: Amanda Beattie, Dylan O’Keefe and Samantha Younane The power to make soft class closure orders came under scrutiny in 2020 (following the NSW Supreme Court decisions in Haselhurst1 and Wigmans2) but recent decisions suggest that soft class closure orders are back.  Late last month, the respondents in the FX class action3 were successful in obtaining […]

Update to AHPRA’s Social Media Guidelines

By: Chris Spain and Catherine O’Keefe At a glance Between October 2023 and February 2024, at least 60 registered health professionals have been the subject of notifications made to the Australian Health Practitioner Regulatory Agency (AHPRA) because of posts on their personal social media accounts about the ongoing Israel-Palestine conflict. As a direct result of […]

New guidance around accessorial liability for directors and officers

By: Raisa Conchin At a glance In April 2019, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) commenced proceedings against Balaska Pty Ltd (Balaska), a solar energy business, and its director, James McLennan, in the Federal Court of Australia. ACMA alleged that Balaska had contravened the Do Not Call Register Act 2006 (Cth) and that the […]

Path cleared for the OAIC’s Medibank investigations

By: Amanda Beattie, Kieran Doyle and Gavin Davies At a glance The latest instalment in one of the big stories of 2023 was delivered last week, with the Federal Court dismissing Medibank’s application to enjoin the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) from continuing its investigations into the 2022 cyber-attacks. The OAIC’s investigations can […]

Working from home and the Fair Work Commission’s Modern Awards Review

By: Sian Gilbert and Dexter Cabal At a glance Since the COVID-19 pandemic, many employers have continued supporting working from home as part of the flexible working arrangements they offer. Others have been promoting return to office practices. The Fair Work Commission (Commission) is currently undertaking a review and consultation process to ascertain whether changes […]