Class Actions Halfday Seminar

Halfday seminar 08 March, 2019

Hon Justice Brigitte Markovic, Federal Court of Australia (Chair); Matt Corrigan, General Counsel, ALRC; Elizabeth Collins SC, 6 Selborne Chambers; Odette McDonald, Ben Phi and Tim Finney, Phi Finney McDonald; Jason Betts, Herbert Smith Freehills; Matthew Kennedy, IMF Bentham, Matt Corrigan, ALRC; Andrew Dawson, Marsh; Emily Dewberry, DEWBERRY Mediations

Dixson Room, Mitchell Wing, NSW State Library

08:30AM to 12:30PM

Program:

Chair:
Hon Justice Brigitte Markovic, Federal Court of Australia

Introduction
Tim Finney, Phi Finney McDonald

Session One
Lessons from the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, 
Superannuation and Financial Services Industry

Elizabeth Collins SC, 6 Selborne Wentworth Chambers

Sesssion Two
Australian Law Reform Commission recommendations:
Class action proceedings and third-party litigation funders
• Key recommendations
• Practical implications
• Where to from here?

Panel discussion
Matt Corrigan, ALRC
Odette McDonald, Phi Finney McDonald
Jason Betts, Herbert Smith Freehills
Matthew Kennedy, IMF Bentham
Andrew Dawson, Marsh
Emily Dewberry, DEWBERRY Mediations

Session Three
Emerging issues in funding class actions
• The benefits of competition
• ‘Beauty contests’ — lessons learned?
• What [not] to worry about if you are an insurer

Ben Phi, Phi Finney McDonald



The Hon Justice Brigitte Markovic, Federal Court of Australia
From 1988 to 2015, Justice Markovic practised as a solicitor at law firm Clayton Utz. She was appointed a partner in 1997. As a solicitor, Justice Markovic practised in corporations, insolvency, commercial and administrative law. She was appointed to the Federal Court by Attorney-General George Brandis on 11 August 2015, taking effect from 24 August. Justice Markovic graduated from the University of New South Wales in 1988 with degrees of Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws.

Tim Finney, Director and Principal, Phi Finney McDonald
Tim is an experienced senior plaintiff class action lawyer who has supervised legal teams on several large commercial class actions. Tim specialises in shareholder class actions, having worked on a dozen such cases including claims against insurers and company auditors. He also has substantial experience in complex financial services and financial product litigation, including claims against banks, large trustee companies, financial advisors and brokers.

Elizabeth Collins SC, 6 Selborne Chambers
Elizabeth was called to the Bar in 1996 and was appointed Senior Counsel in 2010. She regularly appears in complex, multi-party commercial litigation in the Federal Court of Australia and the Supreme Court of New South Wales, with a particular emphasis on corporations law and insolvency matters, as well as class actions. She frequently acts for financial institutions, insolvency practitioners, and publicly listed corporations, and appeared in the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry.

Matt Corrigan, General Counsel, ALRC
Matt Corrigan’s particular expertise lies in law reform, human rights and development assistance. He has over 14 years professional experience, including with international NGOs, the United Nations, parliaments, the Australian Law Reform Commission and the Australian Government.

Odette McDonald, Director and Principal, Phi Finney McDonald
Odette McDonald is an experienced senior class actions specialist, who has worked on complex and high-profile matters in Australia and the United Kingdom. Odette has represented thousands of people in a number of successful class actions, which have collectively delivered settlements in excess of $350 million. Her class action, group litigation and multi-party litigation expertise includes shareholder class actions, financial advice and product claims, personal injuries, consumer actions, environmental litigation, and debenture trustee class actions. 

Jason Betts, Partner, Herbert Smith Freehills
For over a decade, Jason Betts has defended significant class action proceedings for corporate Australia and has established himself as one of Australia’s leading class action practitioners. He is prominently featured in a range of publications and was recognised by Lawyers’ Weekly as the 2016 & 2017 Partner of the Year for Disputes; and named Lawyer of the Year in Class Action Litigation by Best Lawyers in 2016. Jason is a co-author of the second edition of Class Actions in Australia, the country’s leading text on class action law and practice.

Matthew Kennedy, Investment Manager, IMF Bentham
Matthew Kennedy is an Investment Manager who leads the Melbourne office of IMF Bentham. Matthew is currently managing several IMF Bentham class actions, including the Commonwealth Bank of Australia investor class action. Matthew was admitted to legal practice in 2001 and joined the Victorian Bar in 2007. He was a commercial law barrister for seven years. Before joining the Bar, Matthew was a solicitor at Minter Ellison, an associate to a Federal Court judge and an adviser to the Victorian Premier. 

Andrew Dawson, National Client Development Leader, Financial and Professional Risks Team, Marsh
Andrew Dawson has extensive broking experience, working with clients to arrange risk and insurance programs in a wide range of client sectors, and advocating for clients’ positions during complex claims. He has worked across multiple business sectors, however has a particular focus on ASX200 listed entities, and financial institutions businesses including banking, wealth management and superannuation.

Emily Dewberry, Mediator, DEWBERRY Mediations
Emily is a nationally recognised Advanced Mediator and LIV Accredited Specialist in Mediation and has been the Principal of DEWBERRY Mediations since 2014. Before becoming a mediator, Emily was a National Claims Manager for a Lloyd’s Syndicate insurer. She mediates a large variety of commercial litigation and insurance cases in Victoria, NSW and Queensland, including in the areas of financial lines, professional negligence, medical malpractice, TPD claims, defamation, public liability, workers compensation recovery actions and contractual disputes.

 
Ben Phi, Managing Director and Principal, Phi Finney McDonald
Ben is one of Australia’s leading plaintiff class action lawyers, having achieved almost half a billion dollars in settlements. While he has specialised in shareholder class actions, Ben’s expertise extends across all areas of complex, high value and multi-party litigation. This includes financial advice and product claims, shareholder and director disputes, executive employment litigation, and common law personal injury claims.



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