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Dispute Resolution

When facing potential dispute situations, cost, reputation and other significant implications need to be carefully managed. We also understand that clients generally seek the most commercially viable outcome, rather than a ‘big win’ in Court.

The HWL Ebsworth Lawyers Dispute Resolution group conducts matters in all major Australian courts and tribunals, while also being experts in alternative dispute resolution techniques, particularly mediation and arbitration. The group uses cutting edge e-discovery technology to maximise operational and cost efficiencies when conducting large scale and complex litigation.

Acting for large listed entities and government departments and agencies, through to privately owned businesses and individuals, the group is experienced in adapting its approach to reflect the size and complexity of the dispute whilst constantly remaining sensitive to commercial considerations.

The team is also alive to regulatory and dispute pitfalls which, if addressed in a risk management context, can often mean avoiding a dispute in the future. Seeking advice from our specialists at the commencement of transactions or contract negotiations means that commercial business objectives are balanced against risk measures, providing positive long-term solutions.

EXPERIENCE
  • Monster Energy AU Pty Ltd:  We represented Monster Energy in the NSW Supreme Court to ensure Bathurst 1000 winner and three-time V8 Supercar champion, Jamie Whincup, continued to perform his sponsorship agreement with the energy drink brand through a threatened breach of a sponsorship agreement and the tort of interfering with contractual relations;
  • Bob Jane Corporation:  We have defended over $10 million dollars in claims, and managed significant reputational risk for Bob Jane Corporation in seven proceedings in the Supreme Court of Victoria involving conversion of chattels, eviction from land, complex legal issues in relation to gifts, loans, limitation periods and the taking of accounts, mareva injunctions (freezing orders), fraudulent transfer of assets under section 172 of the Property Law Act 1958.  We also represented the client in a Federal Court proceeding for breach of trade mark, misleading and deceptive conduct and contempt;
  • Reckitt Benckiser: We obtained injunctions in the Federal Court for Reckitt Benckiser restraining a competitor, Procter & Gamble from broadcasting a national advertising and marketing campaign which involved misleading ‘comparative’ television advertising between Finish and Fairy dishwashing tablets. Having the dominant product in this marketplace, this advertising campaign put at risk Finish’s brand equity and reputation in the marketplace;
  • One of Australia’s most loved chicken and poultry businesses: We acted in a multifaceted dispute involving the ABC, Fairfax, YouTube, Animal Liberation and the NSW Police regarding illegally obtained footage of alleged cruelty to animals. These disputes involved considerable brand dependent strategies and had to be focused on entirely reducing the reputational harm to the company as well as ensuring the continued operation of the facility 6 weeks before Christmas (an important time commercially for our client);
  • Van Diemen’s Land Co: Acted in urgent Supreme Court of Victoria and Court of Appeal proceedings for the ultimate shareholder of Australia’s largest dairy farming operation in a $280m M&A dispute relating to the proposed sale of the operation; and
  • Mater Misericordiae Limited: Acted for Mater in a dispute concerning the breach of a software contract in respect of software which had been provided to Mater which did not have the level of functionality and capability as originally represented and was therefore not fit for purpose.
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