NAB hit with class action on super rip-off

Original article by Aleks Vickovich
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 12 & 17 : 22-Jan-20

A class action lawsuit will contend that National Australia Bank’s superannuation customers incurred substantial losses due to the bank’s tardiness in shifting them to a MySuper product. Law firm Maurice Blackburn will argue that NAB subsidiaries MLC Nominees and NULIS Nominees breached their duties as superannuation trustees by keeping customers in funds that had higher fees than MySuper products. The allegations were first raised before the Hayne royal commission in 2018.

CORPORATES
NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, MAURICE BLACKBURN PTY LTD, MLC NOMINEES, NULIS NOMINEES (AUSTRALIA) LIMITED, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY

Westpac faces class action over scandal

Original article by Aleks Vickovich
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 14 & 19 : 19-Dec-19

Law firm Phi Finney McDonald has filed a class action lawsuit against Westpac on behalf of retail and institutional investors. The firm will allege amongst other things that Westpac breached its continuous disclosure obligations by failing to properly inform prospective investors about Austrac’s concerns regarding its compliance with anti-money laundering laws. The class action is open to investors who bought Westpac shares between 16 December 2013 and 19 November 2019.

CORPORATES
WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, PHI FINNEY McDONALD PTY LTD, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT. AUSTRALIAN TRANSACTION REPORTS AND ANALYSIS CENTRE, WOODSFORD LITIGATION FUNDING, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, AMP LIMITED – ASX AMP, MAURICE BLACKBURN PTY LTD, IMF BENTHAM LIMITED – ASX IMF

BHP seeks delay in Brazil class action case

Original article by Liz Main
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 21 : 27-Nov-19

BHP has asked the Federal Court to postpone a shareholder class action until criminal charges against past and present executives are resolved. Brazilian prosecutors charged eight BHP executives with a range of offences – including intentional homicide – in the wake of the Samarco iron ore tailings dam disaster in 2015. Shareholders subsequently launched a class action against BHP to recover the loss in value of their shares following the disaster. The outcome of the criminal charges is unlikely to be known for at least two years.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, SAMARCO MINERACAO SA, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, VALE SA

IR class action costs ruling appealed

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 10 : 18-Nov-19

UK-based litigation funder Augusta Ventures will appeal a court ruling that it must pay security of costs up-front in a wage theft class action. The case centres on allegations that BHP and labour hire firms underpaid casual workers at the Mount Arthur coal mine. Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox warns that there is the potential for workers to receive nothing from a class action payout once a litigation funder has received its share. He has called for the sector to be subject to the same regulation as financial services providers.

CORPORATES
AUGUSTA VENTURES, BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, ADERO LAW

Costs blow strikes Fair Work funders

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 6 : 9-Oct-19

Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox has welcomed the Federal Court’s ruling that litigation funder August Ventures should provide security for employers’ costs in a class action over alleged breaches of workplace laws. Willox hopes the ruling will make Fair Work class actions less attractive to litigation funders, while he has called for such businesses to be subject to greater regulation. There are currently 11 class actions before the Federal Court involving ­alleged breaches of the Fair Work Act.

CORPORATES
FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, AUGUST VENTURES, ADERO LAW, CONSTRUCTION, FORESTRY, MARITIME, MINING AND ENERGY UNION OF AUSTRALIA, WORKPAC PTY LTD

AMP hit with new class action

Original article by Samantha Bailey
The Australian – Page: 20 : 27-Jun-19

AMP says it will "vigorously" defend a class action launched by law firm Slater & Gordon, which alleges that superannuation fund members were charged excessive fees. Slater & Gordon is the second law firm to file a class action on behalf of AMP’s super fund members, with Maurice Blackburn having done so in May. Maurice Blackburn is also pursuing a separate class action against AMP over its compliance with disclosure obligations.

CORPORATES
AMP LIMITED – ASX AMP, SLATER AND GORDON LIMITED – ASX SGH, MAURICE BLACKBURN PTY LTD, THERIUM LITIGATION FINANCE

No-win, no-fee prevails in AMP class action face-off

Original article by Michael Pelly
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 8 : 24-May-19

Five law firms filed class actions against AMP in the wake of ‘the fee for no service’ scandal that was unearthed by the banking royal commission. However, NSW Supreme Court Justice Julie Ward ruled on 23 May that only one action, which is a combined effort between Slater & Gordon and Maurice Blackburn, can proceed. Ward said Maurice Blackburn will have to put up $5 million as security for AMP’s expenses, while AMP advised in a statement that it intend to vigorously defend the class action.

CORPORATES
AMP LIMITED – ASX AMP, SUPREME COURT OF NEW SOUTH WALES, SLATER AND GORDON LIMITED – ASX SGH, MAURICE BLACKBURN PTY LTD, QUINN EMANUEL URQUHART AND SULLIVAN LP, SHINE LAWYERS, PHI FINNEY McDONALD PTY LTD

IAG faces action over sales tactics

Original article by James Fernyhough
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 30 : 12-Apr-19

Law firms Johnson Winter & Slattery and Bannister Law have filed a class action against Insurance Australia Group. The lawsuit will allege that IAG subsidiary Swann Insurance engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct with regard to the sale of add-on car insurance, which IAG has ceased offering. The Australian Securities & Investments Commission questioned the value of add-on insurance in 2017, while such policies also attracted scrutiny by the Hayne royal commission.

CORPORATES
INSURANCE AUSTRALIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX IAG, SWANN INSURANCE (AUSTRALIA) PTY LTD, JOHNSON WINTER AND SLATTERY, BANNISTER LAW, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY

Westpac faces class action on loans

Original article by Richard Gluyas
The Australian – Page: 24 : 22-Feb-19

Westpac intends to defend a class action launched by Maurice Blackburn on behalf of home loan customers. The law firm will contend that Westpac breached its responsible lending obligations by failing to sufficiently assess borrowers’ capacity to repay the loan and to verify information about their financial circumstances. Westpac had been subject to similar legal action by the Australian Securities & Investments Commission in 2018, and that case will return to court after a settlement was rejected by the presiding judge.

CORPORATES
WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, MAURICE BLACKBURN PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA

BHP class action down to one

Original article by Ben Butler
The Australian – Page: 15 : 19-Dec-18

The Federal Court has ruled that Phi Finney McDonald’s class action against BHP over the Samarco tailings dam disaster in Brazil can proceed. Rival law firms Maurice Blackburn and Johnson Winter & Slattery had also proposed class actions against the resources group, but Justice Mark Moshinsky expressed a preference for Phi Finney McDonald’s funding model. He also noted that the firm’s case was more advanced in terms of preparation.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, PHI FINNEY McDONALD PTY LTD, MAURICE BLACKBURN PTY LTD, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, VALE SA, G&E KTMC FUNDING, HARBOUR FUND IV, ROBBINS GELLER RUDMAN AND DOWD LLP, LOS ANGELES COUNTY EMPLOYEES’ RETIREMENT ASSOCIATION