Publications

The High Court of Australia has handed down its decision on an appeal from a judgment of the Court of Appeal of the Supreme Court of New South Wales regarding the arrangements between a registered club and its caterers. The outcome of these cases has implications for clubs when entering into leases or licences over any part of their licensed premises.

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In February 2015, the South Australian Government (‘SA Government’) released a State Tax Review Discussion Paper outlining potential tax reforms for the State. One aim of the review is to create a more consistent tax regime between online and land based gambling operators. The SA Government proposes moving the tax base for online gambling from ‘place of supply’ to ‘place of consumption’.

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From 1 July 2015 the Victorian Government will impose additional tax on foreign purchasers and absentee owners.

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The Metropolitan Planning Levy commences on 1 July 2015. It will fund the implementation of Plan Melbourne and Metropolitan Planning Authority initiatives and the costs of delivering a more streamlined planning system in Victoria.

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The Western Australian Court of Appeal (Martin CJ, Buss JA and Beech J) has held that the surviving trustee of a self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) was not required to appoint one of the deceased trustee’s executors as a replacement trustee, and that the trustee had acted bona fides in exercising its discretion to pay the death benefit. The case is Ioppolo v Conti.

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The Full Federal Court (Rares, Yates and Griffiths JJ) has dismissed an appeal by Mr Mervyn Tarrant from a decision of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) (President D Kerr and Senior Member Ms JL Redfern). The AAT’s decision was to dismiss Mr Tarrant’s application for review of a seven-year ban from providing financial services imposed by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). This brings to a close Mr Tarrant’s appeals in relation to ASIC’s original ban. The case is Tarrant v Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

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The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) took enforcement actions against a number of the companies and individuals involved in the collapse of the Trio Capital Group (Trio Group). These enforcement actions are summarised in the Appendix of this publication. Further details of the actions against particular individuals are also provided.

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Cash Store is a landmark case for the consumer credit regime. Cash Store confirms that the systemic selling of high-priced and inappropriate, even illusory, insurance cover to financially disadvantaged and financially vulnerable consumers is unlawful, and can potentially lead to enforcement action by ASIC and severe penalties.

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The Supreme Court of Queensland last week clarified the law relating to penalties as it applies to liquidated damages clauses in construction contracts and, in so doing, provided welcome reassurance for many contracting parties operating within the construction industry across Australia.

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In the recent United Kingdom decision in Mr E Goldswain and Miss J Hale v Beltec Limited (trading as BCS Consulting) and AIMS Plumbing and Building Services Limited [2015] EWHC 556, the Technology and Construction Court considered an attempt to widen the scope of an engineer's duty to warn.

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