find the latest legal job
Inhouse Legal Counsel -18 months-4 PAE - Real Estate Investment Company
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· In brand new prestigious CBD offices
View details
Senior Associate - Competition, Policy & Regulatory
Category: Other | Location: Sydney CBD, Inner West & Eastern Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Work with a well regarded Partner · Sydney CBD
View details
Commercial Litigation Senior Associate
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Sydney CBD, Inner West & Eastern Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Lawyers Weekly Australia Partner of the Year 2016, Insolvency
View details
MULTIPLEX Regional Legal Counsel (Vic) | 7 to 10 years + PQE
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Career defining in-house role · Tier One international contractor
View details
Junior Lawyer - Personal Injury Law
Category: Personal Injury Law | Location: Parramatta & Western Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Highly specialized practice · Challenging role with great opportunities
View details
Class action relocated

Class action relocated

The Maurice Blackburn class action against the crop protection company Nufarm has been moved from Sydney to Melbourne.Federal Court judge Ray Finkelstein made the decision on 15 February so that…

The Maurice Blackburn class action against the crop protection company Nufarm has been moved from Sydney to Melbourne.

Federal Court judge Ray Finkelstein made the decision on 15 February so that he could hear the Maurice Blackburn case in tandem with the rival Slater & Gordon class action against Nufarm, which was initially filed in Melbourne.

Maurice Blackburn senior associate Jason Geisker told Lawyers Weekly that the relocation would not adversely affect his firm, and would still primarily be handled by himself and Sydney principal Ben Slade.

"We consented to the transfer of proceedings to Melbourne," Geisker said. "There will be some inconvenience to us and our client based in Sydney, but in the interests of running the matter efficiently,

it was appropriate to hear both matters together."

Slater & Gordon practice group head Ben Phi said that the two firms were communicating with each other with regard to achieving efficiencies for their respective clients.

"A number of issues overlap and it is in the interests of our group members to cooperate," he said.

The key differences between the claims is that the Maurice Blackburn action is being conducted on a no win no fee basis and covers a longer period, being open to investors who purchased shares in the company between 28 September 2009 and 28 August 2010.

Maurice Blackburn alleges that Nufarm engaged in misleading conduct for the duration of this period.

The Slaters action covers the period between 2 March and 28 August 2010.

On 2 March 2010, Nufarm managing director Doug Rathbone announced a $40 million loss for the first half of its 2010 financial trading year, blaming lower glyphosate prices, but that the company should rebound in the second half of 2010 and generate a headline profit of between $120 and $140 million. However, on 14 July, the company announced that it expected to generate a net operating profit of between $55 and $65 million. Nufarm blamed poor climatic conditions in Europe and North America for dampening demand for crop protection products.

The Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) fined Nufarm $66,000 for an alleged failure to comply with continuous disclosure obligations in December. Nufarm did not provide an admission of guilt in paying the fine.

Geisker said that while discussions were continuing with Nufarm's legal advisers from Arnold Bloch Leibler and counsel Lachlan Armstrong, settlement was unlikely before the matter was next due before Justice Finkelstein before 17 May.

"Settlement is unlikely in the extreme before that date," he said. "The constitution of both proceedings has yet to be resolved, and it is probably too early for the parties to agree on what the parameters of the overall claim against Nufarm will be."

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Class action relocated
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Animal law moots, advocacy, Melbourne University, Australia and New Zealand Intervarsity Moot on Animal Law
Sep 25 2017
Moot unleashes animal advocacy
Melbourne has played host to one of the largest animal law moots, with student participants put th...
Scales
Sep 25 2017
Transgender teens should not need legal approval for hormone treatment, court hears
A transgender 17-year-old known as Kelvin has appealed in the Family Court against the requirement o...
Appointed, Victorian Legal Services Commissioner
Sep 25 2017
NFP CEO appointed Victorian Legal Services Commissioner
The CEO of a Victorian not-for profit pro bono legal services provider has been named as the state...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...