Our legal experts will keep you up to date on all relevant and current developments.

Can you believe everything you read from social media influences? The ACCC is investigating.
Wednesday 10 April 2024 / by Isabella Campbell, Solicitor posted in Business, Corporate & Commercial Social Media Influencers Advertising ACCC Consumer Law

In early 2023, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) conducted an internet sweep of influencers who were promoting and advertising products on social media. In December 2023, the ACCC released their findings, determining and identifying deceptive marketing practices used across the digital economy. 

Franchise agreements and ‘unfair’ contract terms – increased risk for franchisors

Previously, an ‘unfair’ contract term could be declared void. However, from 9 November 2023, franchisors are prohibited from entering into standard form contracts with franchisees that contain unfair terms. Franchisors are also prohibited from relying on unfair terms, which have been renewed or varied on or after 9 November 2023. Doing so may attract substantial financial court penalties, now potentially in the millions.

Franchise Dispute Process | The Basics

Issues will inevitably arise in a franchise relationship. Sometimes, those issues can be dealt with quickly and in a way that allows both parties to carry on their business in a positive manner. Other times, an issue has become too big, or a series of smaller issues linger, and some type of third party intervention is required.

What Is Coercion In Business Law │ Principles & Practices
Wednesday 29 November 2023 posted in Business, Corporate & Commercial

Coercion in business law is not just a theoretical concept; it's a practical reality that can impact contracts and relationships significantly. Holman Webb Lawyers can help navigate these murky waters, providing clarity and protection to businesses and individuals alike. 

As we delve into the nuances of coercion, let's explore what it means, how it manifests in business dealings, and its legal repercussions.

Case Note: Bellas v Powers [2023] NSWSC

The case of Bellas v Powers [2023] NSW SC involved a dispute over the enforceability of a clause that imposed a higher interest rate on a loan facility in the event of default. The court held that the clause was a penalty as it was extravagant and unconscionable in comparison with the greatest loss that could be proved to have followed from the breach. The term was therefore deemed void and unenforceable.

Unfair Contract Terms. Are you Compliant? If not, is it worth $50m?

In 2016 the Australian government introduced a new law that will come into effect on 9 November 2023 to protect small business from unfair terms in business-to-business standard form contracts. Are you are compliant?

New Register of Foreign Ownership of Australian Assets commences on 1 July

Foreign investors will be required to provide notice to the Commissioner of Taxation of certain transactions relating to interests held in land and in entities and businesses in Australia.

Transactions that occur on or after 1 July 2023 are captured by the new Register of Foreign Ownership of Australian Assets, irrespective of when an approval was granted, (if any).

Franchisors must deliver what they promise – a look at the ‘UFC Gym’ situation

Over the last couple of years, the Franchising Code of Conduct has increased the disclosure obligations on franchisors. However, franchisors have always had to make sure that, in simple terms, they deliver what they promise to franchisees.

Under the Australian Consumer Law, franchisors can be liable where they engage in misleading or deceptive conduct – which can include promising an amount of start-up costs without a reasonable basis.

The Federal Court recently found that this is what took place within the ‘UFC Gym’ system in Australia.

Holman Webb welcomes two Partners in Sydney and one in Melbourne

Holman Webb Lawyers is expanding its capability in several teams to support ongoing growth, announcing the addition of three partners across our Sydney and Melbourne offices.

Scenic Tours Left With $10 Million Damages Award After Substantially Failing in its Latest Appeal

The NSW Court of Appeal recently delivered an interesting judgment in the matter of Scenic Tours Pty Ltd v Moore [2023] NSWCA 74.

The Plaintiff in this matter, Mr David Moore, was the lead Plaintiff in a class action against Scenic Tours by thousands of disgruntled cruise ship passengers from multiple separate cruises.

For extra context, we suggest reading our 2020 article discussing Moore v Scenic Tours Pty Ltd [2020] HCA 17: Damages for ‘Disappointment and Distress’ Available to Consumers for Breaches of Consumer Guarantees for Travel and Recreational Contracts.

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