Litigation

What is a Case Management Hearing?

In the Federal Court of Australia, a case management hearing is a meeting of the parties and the Court to identify issues at the earliest possible stage (Case Management Hearing).[1]  They are the essential element of, and main procedure used in achieving, case management.[2]  In Queensland Courts, they are referred to as case management conferences.[3]  Case Management Hearings may be referred to by different terms in each State.  This article discusses Case Management Hearings in the Federal Court. [Read more…]

The tort of injurious falsehood

Injurious falsehood is a tort which arises when a person makes false representations about the goods and services of a person or company.  The representations can be either written or spoken, and must encourage others not to deal with the person or business, in turn resulting in damage.   Notably, injurious falsehood offers a remedy when a cause of action for defamation is not available under the Defamation Act 2005 (Cth)(Act). [Read more…]

Review of QBCC decisions – part 1

Under the Queensland Building and Construction Commission Act 1991 (Act) the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) is empowered to make a variety of decisions including, but not limited to: [Read more…]

Warning – Facebook trolls ordered to pay $150k damages

In the recent unreported case of Moy v Isaac & Smith, featured in an article published by the Courier Mail on 15 November 2020, two online trolls were ordered to pay $150,000 to a wedding planner after creating a number of defamatory Facebook posts about her business. [Read more…]

The tort of passing off

The tort of passing off occurs where one trader (Defendant) has wrongly represented that its goods or services are related to those of another (Plaintiff) by imitating the latters get-up, or look and feel of their product or service.[1]  A passing off action is designed to provide a remedy when this situation results in damage to the Plaintiff’s business reputation.  It is usually pleaded as an alternative cause of action to misleading and deceptive conduct pursuant to the Australian Consumer Law, contained inside schedule 2 of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth).   [Read more…]

Can legal privilege be waived by using cloud based document hosting?

It is very common nowadays for businesses to store documents online using document hosting applications such as Dropbox or Google Documents that allow multiple parties to read, open and modify documents from any location in the world.  While using these cloud storage facilities is very convenient, it may pose a problem where a person wants to claim legal professional privilege over the documents they contain. [Read more…]

Subpoenas to produce documents – Federal Court

In litigious matters, it is often the case that a third party has documents which may go towards proving (or disproving) a fact in issue in the proceedings.  When this arises, the question becomes whether you can subpoena the documents, what form should the subpoena take and at what stage in the proceedings this is best done. [Read more…]

Categories of discovery – Federal Court

On 1 August 2011 the Federal Court of Australia (Federal Court) adopted the Federal Court Rules 2011 (Cth) (Rules) and its revised regime for discovery.  The Federal Court does not require parties to provide disclosure as a matter of course.  Instead, if a party wishes to receive documents from another party (or a third party), they must seek the Court’s permission.  This process in the Federal Court of Australia is known as discovery.  The Rules are to be read in conjunction with the relevant Federal Court practice notes, particularly Central Practice Note: National Court Framework and Case Management (CPN-1) and Intellectual Property Practice Note (IP-1).  In this article, we consider the process of seeking discovery of documents by categories in a matter before the Federal Court. [Read more…]

Emojis used online can be defamatory – watch out!

In the recent New South Wales case of Burrows v Houda [2020] NSWDC 485 , the Court was faced with the difficult question of whether an emoji is capable of having a defamatory meaning.  As the case was a first for Australia, the Court relied upon UK case law, as well as the ordinary definition of ‘emoji’, in considering the meaning behind the emoji used. [Read more…]

Preliminary discovery granted in patent proceedings

The Federal Court of Australia has allowed an application for preliminary discovery of documents related to the components of a ‘sealing composition’ and methods of using it to seal passages.  In the case of Sovereign Hydroseal Pty Ltd v Steynberg [2020] FCA 1084, the Federal Court considered whether preliminary discovery can be used by a patentee to inform its decision-making in relation to whether to commence a proceeding in respect of potential patent infringement. [Read more…]

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