Are software developers liable for defects in their software?

The question of whether software developers are (or ought to be) legally liable for bugs, errors, security vulnerabilities, or other defects in the software which they develop, and the extent to which they are (or ought to be) liable for the loss flowing from those defects, is not a new one and has been the subject of significant legal and academic debate since at least the 1980s.  This article considers the liability of software developers in negligence and under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL), and also discusses whether insurance is available to offset these risks for the developer. [Read more…]

Franchisor’s liability for forecasts

Forecasts are, by nature, attempts to predict the future. In the course of a franchisor-franchisee relationship, and especially so in the period before a franchise agreement is signed, a franchisor will provide forecasts to a prospective franchisee to demonstrate the future value of the franchise. In fact, before a franchise agreement can be signed, the Franchising Code of Conduct (Code) requires that a number of forecasts are given to a prospective franchisee in a disclosure document, in order to help the prospective franchisee to make a reasonably informed decision. [Read more…]

Criminal liability shifts away from company officers

The Personal Liability for Corporate Fault Reform Act 2012 (PLCFRA), assented to on 10 December 2012, was implemented in an effort to ensure that personal criminal liability for corporate fault is imposed in accordance with the principles of good corporate governance.

Prior to the PLCFRA, company secretaries and directors were made criminally liable for the acts of the corporation in which they served.

[Read more…]

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