Class Actions

Mitigating risk. Strategic defence. Ready for future challenges.

A company is more likely to face a class action in Australia than almost any other country apart from the United States. A plaintiff-friendly class action regime, an entrepreneurial legal market and an active (and largely unregulated) third party funding market all contribute to this risk. For an overview of the current Australian class action landscape, click here.

If a class action is threatened or commenced against your organisation, it is important to resist knee jerk reactions and to instead engage in an objective assessment of risk from day one. As a preventative measure, it is also important to be conscious of the types of conduct that may give rise to class action risk in your business, and to ensure appropriate systems are in place to minimise the risk of that conduct occurring. It is also prudent to have plans in place so that, should something go awry, the response can be swift and based on an objective assessment of risk.

How we can help

The breadth and depth of our experience across all sectors gives our team the practical knowledge and insights to deal with the unique legal, strategic and reputational issues that arise when a class action is threatened or commenced.

Mitigating risk

Embedding class action risk mitigation strategies across your business is essential. We work with you to ensure you're prepared for what lies ahead, assisting with the identification of risk and the implementation of protection measures to avoid the risk crystallising in a claim.

Strategic defence

Addressing the issues that arise in the course of a class action requires specialised knowledge and expertise. Entrusting the defence of a class action to lawyers who are not class action experts involves unnecessary risk. From years of experience, we are well versed in the drivers of class action promoters and the regulatory landscape. Accessing our unrivalled expertise will ensure you are one step ahead at all times.

Ready for future challenges

Class actions practice has changed substantially in recent years as the areas of risk continue to evolve. Our team is scanning the horizon for tomorrow's challenges, from cyber attacks and data breaches to claims relating to the transformation of healthcare. We're at the forefront of the discussion regarding reform and defending the cutting edge claims which continue to shape the modern class action practice.


Crown Resorts

Acting for Crown Resorts in a class action brought on behalf of persons who acquired or held Crown shares between late 2014 and late 2020.

QBE and Insurance Australia Group (IAG)

Advising QBE Insurance Group and IAG in connection with business interruption insurance policies.

Shareholder class actions

Acted for Aristocrat Leisure Limited in the first shareholder class action to be brought to trial in Australia. Since that we time we have acted for defendants in numerous other shareholder class actions, including Brambles, QBE, AWB and CIMIC.

Consumer class actions

Defended Westpac Banking Corporation in class actions relating to exception fees charged by most of Australia's retail banks and in a class action brought on behalf of customers of Westpac financial planners who purchased insurance policies from Westpac Life. We also acted in a threatened class action in respect of telecommunications network coverage.

Products class actions

Acted for Ford in the defence of a class action raising allegations about defects in the power shift transmission in certain Ford vehicles. Defended Nissan in the high-profile class action proceedings relating to alleged safety issues with Takata airbags. Acted in a range of products class actions for multi-nationals such as Pfizer (pharmaceutical products), Phillip Morris (tobacco), Du Pont (Benlate® fungicide) and Dow Corning (breast implants).

Environmental class actions

Acted for PTTEP Australasia in respect of a class action arising from an oil spill at its Montara oilfield in 2009. We have also advised on bushfire class actions and for Glencore, BHP Billiton and Oz Minerals in class actions alleging environmental damage in the course of mining operations.

Other financial services class actions

Acted for Bendigo and Adelaide Bank in sixteen investor class actions arising out of the Great Southern collapse, and for Macquarie Bank in an investor class action that followed the collapse of Storm Financial.

Other financial services class actions

Acted for ABN Amro in the landmark class action relating to the credit rating assigned to complex financial products known as CPDOs – the first case in the world to put a credit rating on trial. We also act for CBA and ANZ in class actions relating to the sale of CDOs.

Expert appointments

Partner Jenny Campbell was appointed by the Supreme Court of New South Wales as an independent (class action) expert to provide advice to class members who were required to choose between competing class actions relating to their investment in Provident Capital.