Legal Updates

2019 Federal Budget insight

With a forecast surplus for 2019-20, the first time in over a decade, of $7.1 billion, Josh Frydenberg’s 2019 Budget is a not too subtle election budget. Surplus is forecast into the future with government debt eliminated by 2029-30.

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Planning permits now required in Victoria for new power lines and sub-stations

From 15 March 2019, power companies and authorities will need planning approval to build new power lines and electrical sub-stations connecting large-scale electricity generation facilities to the Victorian energy network.

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Federal Budget: our initial thoughts

Partners Anthony Bradica and Harry New share their initial thoughts about tonight’s Federal Budget.

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NLRB Responds to Congressional Inquiry Regarding Proposed Joint-Employer Rule

Since 2015, employers have faced continued uncertainty regarding which standard the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or the “Board”) will apply when determining joint-employer status under the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”). Businesses utilizing contractors and staffing firms or operating in partnering arrangements, as well as those engaged in providing temporaries and other contingent workers, have faced a moving target before the Board when it comes to potential responsibility in union recognition, bargaining obligations, and unfair labor practice cases.

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‘Fairness in Franchising’ finds fault in car dealership agreements

The ‘Fairness in Franchising’ Report recommends increased regulation for non-renewal of car dealership agreements

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Talking Tax – Issue 154

Inbound distributors: new ATO guideline on transfer pricing risk framework

On 13 March 2019, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) released a Practical Compliance Guideline PCG 2019/1 (Guideline) on its approach to identifying potential transfer pricing issues for existing and new inbound distribution arrangements involving multi-national entities (MNEs). The Guideline sets out the ATO’s framework for this compliance activity and provides useful guidance on the ATO’s perception of the risk associated with particular industries including the life sciences, information and communications technology, motor vehicle and general distributors industries.

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Obscure FDA Device Reporting Exemptions Draw Patient and Provider Concern

Many physicians rely on publicly available reports to assess the safety of the devices they use on patients, but in some cases, these reports aren’t painting the full picture.  A recent Kaiser Health News (“KHN”) article raises serious questions about FDA’s practice of allowing a significant number of medical device injury and malfunction reports to stay out of the public eye.

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NJ Employers and Out-of-State Employers with NJ Residents Prepare: State Updates Website on Employer Reporting for New Jersey Health Insurance Mandate

As employers are wrapping up their reporting under the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) for the 2018 tax year (filings of Forms 1094-B/C and 1095-C/B with the IRS are due by April 1, 2019, if filing electronically), they should start preparing for new reporting obligations for the 2019 tax year.

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Concurrency

In Hunt & Hunt v Mitchell Morgan Nominees the High Court went a long way towards clarifying when a claim is ‘apportionable’ under the apportionment legislation which is typical throughout Australia. The test is whether the loss arises from a failure to take reasonable care.

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Landmark ruling in Parkerville bushfire litigation

The Supreme Court of Western Australia has found a network authority’s contractor and a private landowner liable in both negligence and nuisance for property damage arising out of the 2014 Parkerville bushfire. Matt McDonald led a Hall & Wilcox team acting for a large group of insured plaintiffs and their insurers in two of the four proceedings, that were heard concurrently.

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