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Repeal of s51(3) of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth): It might be time to think about your competition - May 2019

On and from 12 September 2019, businesses that license or assign IP rights will be subject to the full application of anti-competition provisions under the Competition and Consumer Act regardless of whether those arrangements were entered into before or after that date.

Partner, Tim Clark, Associate, Philip Chow and Lawyer, Jamin Li, explain why businesses involved in the conditional licensing or assignment of IP rights should consider reviewing their current arrangements.

Significantly higher penalties for corporate misconduct in effect - Apr 2019

Recently passed legislation significantly increased the penalties applicable to wrongdoing in relation to consumer credit, financial services and general insurance. On the whole, penalties are increased and new methods of determining penalties are introduced. Partner, Andrea Beatty, provides and overview of the new penalties.

Design and distribution obligations and product intervention power finally legislated - Apr 2019

Legislation for the long awaited financial product design and distribution obligations and ASIC product intervention power has finally been passed by the federal Parliament. Partner, Andrea Beatty, and lawyer, Gabor Papdi, provide an overview of the new legislation.

Draft legislation to end grandfathered conflicted remuneration for financial advisers - Apr 2019

Recommendation 2.4 of the Royal Commission in Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry (Royal Commission) provided that the grandfathering arrangements for conflicted remuneration in relation to financial advice provided to retail clients to be removed as soon as practicable. Conflicted remuneration was prohibited by amendments to the Corporations Act that commenced on 1 July 2013, but pre-existing arrangements were allowed to continue in place. The Royal Commission found that conflicted remuneration did not die off as pre-2013 arrangements came to an end, and so recommended law reform to end such grandfathered arrangements as soon as is reasonably practicable.

Government announces increased penalties for Privacy Act breaches - Apr 2019

On 24 March 2019, the Commonwealth Attorney-General and the Minister for Communications and the Arts announced the federal government’s intention to legislate to strengthen penalties under the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act) and other reforms to target major social media companies’ conduct in relation to personal information.

Small amount credit contract and consumer lease reforms likely to again die - Apr 2019

With the final sitting days of the federal Parliament before the upcoming election likely to have occurred, the National Consumer Credit Protection Amendment (Small Amount Credit Contract and Consumer Lease Reforms) Bill 2018 and National Consumer Credit Protection Amendment (Small Amount Credit Contract and Consumer Lease Reforms) Bill 2019 – both substantially identical Private Member’s Bills introducing long-discussed consumer-friendly changes to the provisions of the NCCP Act governing small amount credit contracts and consumer leases – have not been passed into law. At the time of writing, the Bills had not progressed past the first reading stage in the House of Representatives, and will lapse when the House is dissolved in anticipation of the upcoming election. It will then be up to members of the next Parliament to reintroduce the Bills if they wish to.

Proposal to allow AFCA to look further back in time - Apr 2019

Have you got a whistleblower policy in place? - Apr 2019

Deadline: 1 July 2019

The Treasury Laws Amendment (Enhancing Whistleblower Protections) Act 2019 has been passed by the Commonwealth Parliament. The previous issue of this newsletter contained an article setting out its provisions in more detail, but one of the key obligations under it, for public and large proprietary companies, is the need to have in place a whistleblower policy that sets out information about:

What will a tougher Unfair Contracts Regime mean for Suppliers? Emerging Trends in Interpretation of Standard Form Contract Protections for Small Business - Mar 2019

In light of growing calls for the introduction of penalties for the unfair terms in standard form contracts.

Partner, Sarah Johnson, examines emerging themes in the consideration of unfair contract terms

Fourth edition of ASX Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations published - Mar 2019

The much anticipated fourth edition of the ASX Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations was released on 27 February 2019. The revised principles and recommendations will take effect for an entity’s first full financial year commencing on or after 1 January 2020.  The final document adopted the majority of the proposals from the 2018 consultation draft, however there have been some notable exceptions.  

Alasdair McLean, Principal and Law Graduate, Rachael Lopez provide an overview of the update and key takeaways for ASX listed companies.

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