ASIC secures victory against Vanguard Investments for ‘ethically conscious’ greenwashing conduct

Last year, we reported on the Australian Securities and Investments Commissions (ASIC) commencement of proceedings against Vanguard Investments Australia Ltd (Vanguard) alleging that Vanguard engaged in misleading conduct in breach of the ASIC Act by making false or misleading claims about the ESG criteria applied to an investment fund it offered to potential investors. On […]

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FMCG Express | March 2024 Edition

In this edition of FMCG Express we consider the regulatory landscape of AI, what to do when you receive a (potentially) defamatory online review, recent Fair Work Act changes (particularly how these changes affect casual workers), and we consider specifics around ESG reporting. Partner Breanna Davies and the Gadens team have prepared this edition to […]

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Finder: ASIC to continue to pursue cases to clarify crypto regulation as the Federal Court finds that a crypto-asset is not a debenture

The Federal Court has handed down its second significant decision involving crypto assets this year. The judgment in ASIC v Finder Wallet Pty Ltd[1] (Finder) follows the recent decision in the BlockEarner case[2] and provides some further guidance for crypto-asset issuers attempting to navigate the present uncertainty around the intersection of digital assets and financial […]

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Buy Now Pay Later: the shape of the new regulatory regime

Treasury has released the much anticipated draft legislation for the regulation of Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) products and confirmed that BNPL providers should prepare to obtain a new or modified Australian Credit Licence and work through the impact of being regulated as credit providers on their businesses. Anti-avoidance protections promise to ensure there is […]

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Influencer compliance with advertising obligations fails to impress

Earlier this year the Australian Competition Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) conducted a sweep of social media platforms to understand how advertising was conducted in social media posts. An alarming 81% of influencers reviewed had made posts that did not wholly comply with the Australian Consumer Law (ACL).[1] Every sector ‘swept’ contained non-compliant posts, with the highest […]

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Unfair contract terms and your franchise agreement

As of 9 November 2023, changes to the unfair contract terms (UCT) regime have come into effect. Franchisors should be aware that unfair terms under the previous regime are void, while unfair terms under the new regime will be unlawful and significant penalties may apply (for companies, up to $50 million or even more). Unfair […]

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The deadline to update the Franchise Disclosure Register is 14 November 2023

Following the amendments to the Franchising Code of Conduct in 2021, the Franchise Disclosure Register (FDR) was established in November 2022. The FDR is administered by the Department of the Treasury and is accessible to the public, allowing prospective franchisees to access information about franchise opportunities. Purpose of the FDR The FDR aims to provide […]

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Futureproofing Australia’s Payment System: Unveiling the Government’s Strategic Plan

The Australian Government has released its Strategic Plan for Australia’s Payments System (Strategic Plan). The Strategic Plan follows on from the Treasury’s Consultation Paper released in December 2022 and outlines a raft of proposed legislative and policy changes to the current payments system regulatory framework. The foreshadowed changes are significant and far-reaching and are aimed […]

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The High Court considers implied terms in informal contracts

The High Court of Australia recently handed down its judgment in the matter of Realestate.com.au Pty Ltd v Hardingham, RP Data Pty Limited v Hardingham [2022] HCA 39, which revisited the law around implied terms in informal contracts. Background Mr Hardingham is a professional photographer and sole director of Real Estate Marketing Australia Pty Ltd (REMA) (together, […]

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FMCG Express | March 2023 Edition

The latest edition of FMCG Express goes straight to the heart of legal issues affecting corporate Australia in 2023; reforms to unfair contracts legislation; changes to the Fair Work Act; privacy law amendments; and cyber and data security. Partner Breanna Davies and the Gadens team of contributors are at the forefront of the analysis of […]

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Regulatory action for greenwashing is upon us

Last week, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) commenced civil penalty proceedings for alleged greenwashing against Mercer Superannuation (Australia) Limited (Mercer). This is in addition to ASIC having issued penalty notices to at least four companies for alleged greenwashing, since October 2022. Last year, ASIC identified investigating greenwashing and taking enforcement action where greenwashing […]

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BTI 2014 LLC v Sequana SA and Others: United Kingdom Supreme Court relies on Australian case law to settle question on Director’s duties

In BTI 2014 LLC v Sequana SA and Others, the United Kingdom Supreme Court considered a case on appeal which asked the Court to expand the common law duty of directors in a significant way. The Appellant sought to argue that common law director duties should require directors to have regard to the interests of […]

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