vLex Australia

  • Changes to Banking Code of Practice set to commence on 1 March 2020

    The Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry issued its final report on 1 February 2019. A few months later, the Banking Code of Practice was substantially overhauled with a view to implementing many of the Commission’s recommendations for consumer and small business banking (2019 Code). (See Article)

    Feb 21, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Trivago Shows You All the Different Prices…Or Does It?

    Trivago Misled Consumers On Hotel Room Rates: Australian Federal Court Looks Into An Algorithmic Black Box - IN BRIEF - The Federal Court has found accommodation comparison website Trivago contravened the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) by misleading consumers about the prices and ranking of accommodation offers. (See Article)

    Feb 20, 2020 7:32 AM

  • ARNECC’s draft Model Participation Rules spell practical problems for mortgagees

    ARNECC has released draft Model Participation Rules (Version 6) (Draft MPRs), and is currently undertaking a consultation process. (See Article)

    Feb 19, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Recapping the Modern Award Review: What is Happening Now?

    A lot has happened since the Fair Work Commission (FWC) commenced its review of modern awards in 2014. Now, 6 years later, the FWC is close to completing the mammoth task of reviewing the operation of each modern award and making variations to ensure that they comply with the "modern awards objective". (See Article)

    Feb 19, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Navy Awards Blockchain Contract, Crypto Loyalty Programs Advance, Australia Releases Blockchain Strategy, US Warns on Crypto AML and Continues Enforcement

    In this issue: • Blockchain Enterprise Applications Continue to Emerge Across Industries • Crypto Loyalty Rewards, Custody and Stablecoin Initiatives; Equity Swap on Blockchain • Anti-Money Laundering a Global Concern; Australia Releases Blockchain Road Map • Enforcement Agencies Prosecute Crypto Fraud Schemes and Dark Market Actors Blockchain Enterprise Applications Continue to Emerge Across Industries By:... (See Article)

    Feb 17, 2020 7:34 AM

  • Think before you trade mark a wink: Registering emojis and emoticons

    Is your business developing emojis and emoticons as part of its marketing strategy? The emoticon and its cousin the emoji are now synonymous with expressing emotions and ideas. (See Article)

    Feb 14, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Blockchain Week in Review: Week of February 7, 2020

    Weekly Focus SEC Commissioner Proposes Safe Harbor for Token Offerings Crypto Company Must Place Investors Back in Their Pre-Investment Position American Council on Education to Explore Blockchain Optimization Two Men Charged in Crypto Ponzi Scheme Australia to Launch Blockchain Roadmap Telangana, India To Launch Blockchain Incubator Bermuda to Explore Digital Currency Payment System U.S. Developments... (See Article)

    Feb 13, 2020 7:33 AM

  • IP Australia Proposes Minor Fee Changes, Major Changes to Opposition and Other Hearing Costs Awards

    Just prior to Christmas, IP Australia announced that it is seeking feedback on its draft Cost Recovery Implementation Statement (CRIS), which outlines proposed fee changes that would take effect from October 2020.  It is also taking the opportunity to review the hearing costs that may be awarded for Patents, Trade Marks and Designs.  The public... (See Article)

    Feb 13, 2020 7:33 AM

  • Is your WA retail shop lease no longer a retail shop lease?

    WA retail shop lease update - Can a retail shop lease that falls within the ambit of the Commercial Tenancy (Retail Shops) Agreements Act 1985 at the time of entry of the retail shop lease cease to be a retail lease during its term? (See Article)

    Feb 13, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Legal management of the novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in Australia

    In NSW, “Novel Coronavirus 2019” was scheduled under the Public Health Act 2010 (NSW) by executive order on 21 January.  As a result, a number of statutory obligations and public health powers thereafter apply to identified cases, and to those who have come in contact with a case. This and other legal framework issues are addressed in a... (See Article)

    Feb 10, 2020 7:34 AM

  • FSANZ wants comments on planned produce rules

    Authorities in Australia are calling for comments on a plan to develop a primary production and processing standard for high-risk horticulture. Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ)’s proposal will consider the development of a primary production and processing (PPP) standard for high-risk horticulture as part of a broader review of Chapter 3 and 4 of... (See Article)

    Feb 10, 2020 7:33 AM

  • Investors Bring 10b-5 Action Against Westpac Over Money Laundering Scandal

    AML Scandals Seem to Inevitably Spawn Investor Lawsuits - As we recently blogged, Westpac, Australia’s second-largest retail bank, has been embroiled in a scandal arising from approximately 23 million alleged breaches of Australia’s anti-money laundering/countering terrorist financing (“AML/CTF”) laws and regulations involving nearly $12 billion in transactions. (See Article)

    Feb 10, 2020 7:33 AM

  • The good, the bad and the ugly

    One year on from Australia's Royal Commission on Banking - The report of the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry (the Report), was published one year ago. (See Article)

    Feb 7, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Important changes to the retail leasing legislation in South Australia

    The Retail and Commercial Leases (Miscellaneous) Amendment Bill 2019 passed through the South Australian Parliament on 12 December 2019 and will come into effect following formal proclamation in early 2020. (See Article)

    Feb 7, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Researchers test method to remove Salmonella from eggshells

    Researchers at a university in Australia have found a way to prevent salmonellosis affecting eggs through surface contamination. Flinders University scientists developed a shell egg decontamination method that removed Salmonella Typhimurium from the outside of an egg without impacting its usability. The method adapted a temperature-controlled water bath common in kitchens and associated with the... (See Article)

    Feb 6, 2020 7:33 AM

  • Coronavirus: what should employers be doing?

    Australia, like many countries, is closely monitoring an outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a new coronavirus first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China in December 2019. In order to meet their duty of care to workers, there are a number of steps employers should now be taking. Be across the facts, not the hysteria... (See Article)

    Feb 5, 2020 7:34 AM

  • Appeal: Refusal to reinstate psychologist

    Vito Zepinic v Health Care Complaints Commission [2020] NSWSC 13 (available on Caselaw) saw the NSW Supreme Court refuse an appeal brought by Mr Zepinic, from an earlier decision of the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal. The matter has a complex background. Dr Zepinic was born in the former Yugoslavia in 1953. He emigrated to... (See Article)

    Feb 5, 2020 7:34 AM

  • PNG public health law and employer obligations concerning the coronavirus

    The coronavirus, which originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan, has caused significant consternation. A short note follows on the legal, and to some extent, the practical issues arising in PNG. This note is written on 3 February 2020 and the issue is moving quickly, so if reading this note after that date please be conscious that events may have moved on. (See Article)

    Feb 5, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Australia – What to look out for in employment law in 2020

    2019 saw many legislative and jurisprudential developments in employment law which should be top of mind for employers moving forward in 2020.  In this article, we summarise the main issues to watch in 2020. The underpayment crisis – “wage theft” The recent spate of very public self-reported wage underpayments by businesses has resulted in increased... (See Article)

    Jan 31, 2020 7:33 AM

  • Corporate Criminal Liability – some practical proposals from Australia

    The Australian Law Reform Commission (the “ALRC”) has proposed a number of reforms to Australia’s federal corporate criminal liability regime. The entire document bears close examination. In this article, we focus on the ALRC’s key proposal to reform corporate criminal liability by the imposition of a form of vicarious criminal liability on the corporation, with a defence available if it can prove that it exercised due diligence to prevent the conduct. (See Article)

    Jan 31, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Australia – Things to look out for in WHS law in 2020

    This blog identifies developments in WHS law to watch in 2020: Industrial Manslaughter Offences The number of Australian jurisdictions with industrial manslaughter offences in operation will expand this year. Currently, the ACT and Queensland are the only states with such legislation in operation. The Victorian law, the Workplace Safety Legislation Amendment (Workplace Manslaughter and other... (See Article)

    Jan 30, 2020 7:33 AM

  • Medical practitioner: Sexual relationship with patient

    With thanks to Phil Gleeson for noting the recent decision of Medical Board of Australia v McCarthy [2020] WASAT 12 (available on AustLII). The disciplinary proceedings concerned a respondent who had general and specialist registration as a physician and psychiatrist, but practised as a psychiatrist. The catchwords show that the complaint encompassed allegations of a... (See Article)

    Jan 29, 2020 9:47 AM

  • Seyfarth promotes Sarah Goodhew to partner

    Seyfarth is proud to announce the promotion of Sarah Goodhew to partner in its Sydney office. Sarah joined Seyfarth in 2015 when it established its Workplace Health and Safety practice. Australia Managing Partner, Darren Perry, said “We are excited to have Sarah become the second lawyer to be promoted to partner since we opened our... (See Article)

    Jan 29, 2020 9:47 AM

  • BEAR Extension (Australia)

    On 22 January 2020 the Australian Government released its proposal paper for extending the Banking and Executive Accountability Regime (BEAR) in Australia to entities regulated by Australia’s prudential regulator, APRA. The extension, known as the Financial Accountability Regime (FAR) is another step in implementing some of the commitments set out in the Government’s Financial Services... (See Article)

    Jan 29, 2020 9:47 AM

  • Interactive Maps II: Where do Leading Patent Attorney Firms Find New Clients?

    In my previous blog post, I explained how preparing articles looking at patent applicants, patent recipients, and attorney firm performance over calendar year 2019 had got me thinking about where ‘new’ Australian patent applicants come from, in the literal sense of where they are located geographically?  I also noted that IP Australia’s annual IP Government Open... (See Article)

    Jan 29, 2020 9:47 AM

  • The Australian Government introduces the Crimes Legislation Amendment (Combatting Corporate Crimes) Bill 2019 (Cth) targeting corporate misconduct and foreign bribery

    Recently, three of Australia's four largest banks have self-reported breaches of anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing laws. Commonwealth Bank of Australia in 2018 admitted fault and agreed to pay a civil penalty of AU$700 million for 53,506 breaches of Australia’s money laundering laws. The penalty imposed at the time was the largest in Australian corporate history. Please see full Publication below for more information. (See Article)

    Jan 29, 2020 9:45 AM

  • Chinese Mobile Tech Company OPPO Comes from Nowhere to Top Australian Patent Filing Table for 2019

    Last calendar year, the number of standard patent filings in Australia fell by 1%, from 29,957 in 2018 to 29,666 in 2019.  While this represents only a small decline, it follows two years of growth, by 1.8% for 2016-2017 and 3.6% for 2017-2018, and thus represents a reversal of the recent upwards trend.  While international... (See Article)

    Jan 20, 2020 7:33 AM

  • Are IP Australia costs awards set to finally reflect costs incurred? Proposed changes to trade mark hearing cost awards

    In December 2019, after much anticipation, IP Australia released a draft of proposed amendments to the costs that may be awarded in relation to trade marks proceedings heard before IP Australia. IP Australia comments that these changes should ensure awards more accurately reflect the actual costs incurred by parties and are based on Federal Court... (See Article)

    Jan 17, 2020 7:33 AM

  • Banking, Finance and Insurance Modern Award changes - What you need to know and do to remain compliant

    The recent changes to the Banking, Finance and Insurance Modern Award (BFIA) follow a Fair Work Commission decision of 4 July 2019. (See Article)

    Jan 16, 2020 7:32 AM

  • Insurance and Economic Costs of Australia’s Bushfires

    The High Risk of Bushfires in Australia - Since November 2019, sweeping bushfires have been ravaging Australia’s coastlines in New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, and Southern Australia. Relief from the catastrophic fires is likely not imminent, as summer temperatures in Australia peak in January and February, increasing the risk of heatwaves, droughts, and bushfires. News reports state that, by early January 2020, land the size of South Korea (about 10 million hectares or 100,000 km²) had been consumed by the fires, affecting approximately a third of the country’s population. (See Article)

    Jan 15, 2020 7:32 AM