Our experience

Our team's experience can be divided into the following broad fields:

Some examples of our experience are listed below.

 

Litigation & Dispute Resolution

    • Defending action commenced by ASIC in the NSW Supreme Court during the "super switching" campaign.
    • Acting for client pursuing accounting firm in relation to fraud.
    • Acting for national firm in intellectual property dispute relating to alleged passing-off – civil action and dealings with the ACCC.
    • Acting for national property developer in defending claims of alleged misleading and deceptive conduct in its media campaign.  Negotiations with ASIC relating to possible enforceable undertaking.
    • Acting for a client to vest trusts in an estate dispute.
    • Acting for a client in relation to an allegation of negligence in relation to a self managed superannuation fund (claim $2.2 million).
    • Advising client regarding class action relating to alleged misconduct by former representative (claims $9m).
    • Acting for client regarding multiple individual client claims (claims $28.5m). Dealing with regulatory issues, consumer claims and media management issues.
    • Acting for client in relation to misconduct by representative (Ponzi scheme – claims $40 million), including dealing with ASIC, the NSW and AFP police services and representation in relation to client class action.
    • Recover indemnified amounts from representative in relation to claims arising from adviser acting outside licensee approved standards, procedures and product lists.
    • Replacement of the responsible entity of a group of managed investment schemes.
    • Acting for client involving marketing software in Federal Court action brought by ASIC alleging misleading and deceptive conduct.
    • Advising client and directors in a matter relating to injurious falsehood and defamation.
    • Enforcing a restraint of trade. Urgent injunctive relief and litigation in the Supreme Court of WA.
    • Acting for client in relation to alleged Ponzi scheme conducted by representative (claims $9.5m). Liaising with ASIC, AFP and WA police services. Dealing with media related issues and consumer compensation matters.
    • Defending allegations of breach of copyright and passing off.
    • Acting for the directors, responsible managers and representatives against liquidator regarding various matters including client registers.
    • Producing independent expert's report used in ASIC administrative hearings and AAT appeals.
    • Defending civil action by clients commenced in NSW Supreme Court.
    • Acting for client and its representative in action by an industry superannuation fund for defamation and injurious falsehood in relation to publications by representative.
    • Acting for clients involved in unregistered managed investment schemes (MIS).
    • Representing many financial planners in relation to ASIC notices issued under the Australian Securities and Investments Commission Act 2001.

 

Investment and Financial Complaints 

  • Acted in hundreds of complaints by investors in internal dispute resolution processes, the Financial Ombudsman Service, Credit and Investments Ombudsman, and the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal.
  • Representing investors in relation to complaints about public offer and industry superannuation funds.
  • Representing investors against their financial planner relating to inappropriate investments to both personal portfolios and SMSF portfolios.
  • Acting for clients pursuing non-payment of death benefit insurance, and income protection insurance.
  • Acting for investors in relation to fraud complaints against financial planners.
  • Acting in complaints regarding replacement superannuation products to a lower performing fund.
  • Proven outcomes with many monetary settlements and other successful resolutions.

 

Industry Advocacy & Representation

  • Negotiating the client transfer privacy protocol on behalf of a major life office with the Federal Privacy Commissioner in July 2003. The protocol granted relief for an "opt-out" method of client consent, rather than opt-in obligation, which permitted a form of "bulk-transfer" approach. This client transfer protocol is published on the Australian Privacy Commissioner's website as an industry standard for privacy purposes and appears as Business FAQ 6.
  • Membership of Commonwealth Treasury's Financial Services Consumer Compensation Roundtable (2006 – 2007).
  • Participant – Financial Planning Advisory Committee – Financial Ombudsman Service (2009 - 2011).
  • Member of the ASIC Financial Services Consultative Group (2007- current).

 

Commercial

  • Advice relating to merger of two entities of two separate APRA regulated groups ($1.1 billion FUA).
  • Advice and commercial drafting in relation to acquisition of one of the largest privately-owned accounting practices in Victoria.
  • Advice relating to structuring of marine and shipbuilding business (international operations in EU).
  • Advice relating to the proposed merger of two significant unlisted mining entities of a major listed international mining company.
  • Advice relating to the establishment and operation of property syndicates and managed investment schemes for local and international clients.
  • Advice in relation to the licensing, establishment and operation of managed discretionary accounts by separate licensees ($4 billion FUA).
  • Advice relating to proposed merger of 2 national businesses ($5 billion FUM and FUA).
  • Advice relating to acquisition of boutique fund manager ($350m FUM).
  • Advice relating to structuring and licensing for major public sector superannuation fund in establishing a wealth management entity to service its members.
  • Obtaining an AFS licence for national stock broking/ corporate finance group as part of an MBO ($1.4 billion under management or under sponsorship).
  • Advice to accounting firm relating to spin-off of associated entity ($580m FUA).
  • Advice relating to Buyer of Last Resort Program.
  • Advice relating to set up of white-label fund with major national bank group ($800m FUA).
  • Advice relating to structuring entity spun-off from international ASX listed engineering and property development group.
  • Advice relating to transfer of distribution channel entities between two AFS licensees including wind-up of white-label product, administration arrangements and client transfer ($480m FUA).
  • Ongoing commercial and legal advice for aggregator regarding structuring purchases of accounting and financial planning practices.
  • Advice as part of the merger of two ASX Participants.
  • Advice relating to transfer of a corporate authorised representative  and client register from one ASX Participant to another ASX Participant ($880m FUA).

 

Compliance

  • Acting for group of individuals in relation to ASIC investigation of alleged insider trading.
  • Acting for Stockbroking firm in relation to ASIC's investigation of alleged market manipulation and breach of Market Integrity Rules.
  • Notifying, negotiating with ASIC and conducting remedial action involving deficient disclosure documents (1,700 clients).
  • Acting in relation to a $400m FUM product failure. Acting for 8 unrelated licensees in matters before ASIC. Acting for individuals the subject of Notices issued by ASIC under section 19 of the ASIC Act 2001. Acting for individuals in relation to ASIC hearings relating to proposed banning orders. Acting for individuals in appeals before the AAT relating to banning orders.
  • Acting for client involved in marketing software and client seminars in negotiating enforceable undertaking regarding ongoing servicing of 11,000 clients.
  • Negotiating enforceable undertaking with ASIC regarding product replacement conduct involving over 400 retail clients.
  • Obtaining relief from ASIC in respect of obligations relating to consumer compensation provisions for the Australian entity of a UK-based group operating in the derivatives market.
  • Investigation of the alleged misconduct of personnel of APRA regulated group.
  • Project management of compliance response to ASIC Notices regarding agricultural scheme collapses.
  • Acting in relation to alleged contravention of the Takeovers: prohibited acquisitions of relevant interests provisions of the Corporations Act 2001.
  • Acting for major national licensee ($5 billion in FUA) in negotiating an enforceable undertaking and management restructure with ASIC.
  • Compliance review and due diligence of major bank owned funds management and financial planning group.