Recent news & publications

Date: 27 Sep 2017
Landlords and tenants of retail premises take note – there has been significant change to the regulation of trading hours for retail shops in Queensland, with the Trading (Allowable Hours) Act (Qld) 1990 (Act) having had its first major overhaul in more than 20 years.
Date: 14 Sep 2017
When shareholders in a company fall out, they sometimes allege that the company’s affairs have been managed in an unfair or oppressive way. Parties to a joint venture gone sour, warring directors, or families mired in disputes over the direction, management, succession and future control of a business are the typical parties to a shareholder dispute, commonly known as an ‘oppression proceeding’.
Date: 08 Sep 2017
All businesses should be reviewing the way they manage the risk of underpayment and worker exploitation as the Federal Government’s reforms to protect vulnerable workers are about to take effect.
Date: 30 Aug 2017
When a lease is being negotiated, landlords and tenants often pay little attention to the ‘make good’ provisions in the lease. As these clauses relate to what the tenant must do at the expiry or earlier termination of the lease, they are often glossed over as something that can be dealt with later.
Date: 08 Aug 2017
Electronic conveyancing commenced in NSW in 2013, allowing (but not requiring) lenders to electronically lodge mortgages and discharges of mortgages through Property Exchange Australia (PEXA).
Date: 28 Jul 2017
In New South Wales, the process for resolving a retail tenancy dispute is primarily governed by the Retail Leases Act 1994 (NSW) (RLA), which sets out the rights and obligations of the parties in resolving retail tenancy disputes, as well as the processes that must be followed.
Date: 24 Jul 2017
The concept of ‘board evaluation’ covers everything from a director having a quiet chat with the Chairman to detailed questionnaires and interviews with an external facilitator. Some boards and directors shy away from it, or only undertake it at a surface level. But when handled in the right way, board evaluation is an important piece of ‘kit’ in an organisation’s strategic tool bag.
Date: 13 Jul 2017
As part of its four year review of modern awards, the Fair Work Commission has decided to insert a ‘casual conversion’ clause into most modern awards that do not already have conversion clauses in place.
Date: 30 Jun 2017
Key changes affecting Australian workplaces are about to take effect, impacting minimum wages, unfair dismissal, penalties for breaches of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (Fair Work Act) and superannuation contributions.
Date: 28 Jun 2017
As every landlord and tenant will know, disputes about a lease can arise for a wide variety of reasons. When a dispute relates to a retail lease in Victoria, the Retail Leases Act 2003 (Vic) (RLA) requires the dispute to be brought to the Victorian Small Business Commissioner (Commissioner) before it can be accepted by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.
Date: 16 Jun 2017
A recent decision of the Federal Court of Australia provides a window into the figurative mind of the court when considering whether to approve an application to convene a shareholders meeting to approve a Scheme of Arrangement.
Date: 08 Jun 2017
There are numerous examples of the unquestionable value that can come from developing and protecting a brand with a well-thought-out brand strategy – just think of what Nike has achieved with its iconic ‘swoosh’, or McDonalds with its famous ‘golden arches’.
Date: 07 Jun 2017
The employer involved in this case[1] had commenced a misconduct investigation focusing on one of its workers. After that investigation was commenced, the worker filed a ‘stop bullying’ application under section 798FC of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth).
Date: 31 May 2017
As we have explored previously, careless drafting of legal documents can have significant consequences, particularly when those documents come under the microscope in litigation.
Date: 24 May 2017
Three months from now, reforms to biodiversity legislation in NSW will come into effect. The NSW Government has opened a new round of consultation on the precise shape that some of those reforms should take, having released a package of information for public comment until 21 June.
Date: 16 May 2017
Blue Impression Pty Ltd (Blue Impression) operates a Japanese fast food outlet Hanaichi in Melbourne. Last year, Blue Impression was taken to court by the Fair Work Ombudsman for underpaying two Taiwanese workers nearly $10,000.
Date: 03 May 2017
The Takeovers Panel regulates the conduct of takeovers in Australia, as its title obviously suggests. But the Panel’s recent consideration of a Rights Issue undertaken by MEC Resources Limited (MEC Resources) illustrates the Panel’s role in reviewing broader matters – specifically, capital raising transactions which could affect control in a company.
Date: 27 Apr 2017
It has been some 13 years since the Retail Leases Act 1994 (NSW) (RLA NSW) was amended. In that time there have been intermittent opportunities for public submissions to the Office of the NSW Small Business Commissioner, with changes to the legislation finally being debated in the NSW Parliament towards the end of last year.
Date: 06 Apr 2017
Australia’s current insolvent trading laws and lack of protection against ‘ipso facto’ clauses can make certain restructurings and workouts far more difficult than they need to be.
Date: 23 Mar 2017
When assessing the value of buildings, property owners are quick to recognise the inherent worth in a physical asset such as premium floor space in a high rise or a prominent shopfront in a shopping centre.
Date: 17 Mar 2017
The March 2017 issue of Governance Directions, the official journal of Governance Institute of Australia, featured an article co-authored by Mark Baker-Jones titled ‘Governance and climate change risk’.
Date: 17 Mar 2017
In our 'Did you know...' series, we share our insights into recent developments in the Planning & Environment sector.
Date: 03 Mar 2017
In our 'Did you know...' series, we share our insights into recent developments in the Planning & Environment sector.
Date: 23 Feb 2017
Most commercial lawyers, whether in private practice or in-house, know that deals often proceed in two stages. In ‘Stage 1’, key terms are often hashed out by parties who are entrusted with the responsibility of agreeing upon the key commercial terms to the transaction.
Date: 17 Feb 2017
On 27 April 2016, the Queensland Government introduced the Environmental Protection (Chain of Responsibility) Amendment Act 2016 (Qld) (CoRA) which amended the Environmental Protection Act 1994 (Qld) (the Act).
Date: 03 Feb 2017
In our 'Did you know...' series, we share our insights into recent developments in the Planning & Environment sector.
Date: 02 Feb 2017
Several key changes affecting Australian workplaces have recently taken effect and another round of reforms are in the pipeline. Some of these changes will have a significant impact on the way businesses manage their people and industrial relations issues, from the engagement of independent contractors to the administration of excessive annual leave balances.
Date: 31 Jan 2017
Asbestos contamination has historically been a significant concern for many Australian businesses, given the material’s common use in the Australian construction industry until the early 90s.
Date: 31 Jan 2017
Seeking to introduce a number of changes to the NSW planning system, the NSW Government has released a draft bill that is open for public consultation until 10 March 2017.
Date: 25 Jan 2017
Over the last ten years, shareholders unhappy with the performance of a company have increasingly turned to class actions against the company and its directors.
Date: 23 Jan 2017
The summer months can be frustrating for employers, as hot weather and sunny skies may tempt employees to ‘chuck a sickie’ and enjoy a day away from work. The lure is particularly strong on the Mondays and Fridays that shoulder a public holiday on a Tuesday or Thursday – the chance at a long weekend can be too good for some to pass up.