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

Eight lawyers included in The Best Lawyers in Australia, and Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in Australia 2023

Holman Webb is pleased to announce that eight lawyers have been included in the 2023 Edition of The Best Lawyers in Australia, and Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in Australia.


Case Note: Hampshire v Health Care Complaints Commission [2021] NSWCA 283

The practitioner in the matter of Hampshire v Health Care Complaints Commission [2021] NSWCA 283 was first registered as a medical practitioner in 1976, and had been a consultant psychiatrist since 1988.

His registration was cancelled by the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal in 2020 because he had sent sexually inappropriate text messages to a young woman after a medico-legal assessment of her in April 2017. He had also failed to comply with health conditions on his registration that imposed limits on his intake of alcohol and sedatives, and he was considered not competent to practice due to alcohol dependence.

This matter is not the first to clearly illustrate the importance of complying with professional standards, and the risks of failing to do so.  Hampshire v Health Care Complaints Commission [2021] NSWCA 283 is similar to the matter of Rahman v Health Care Complaints Commission [2021] NSWCA 247 (discussed in Holman Webb’s December 2021 article), in that the practitioners in question both had histories of non-compliance with conditions, which gave the respective Tribunal Members no confidence that either would adhere to further conditions imposed.


No Stay on De-Registration Orders: Rahman v Health Care Complaints Commission [2021] NSWCA 247

This case note from Insurance Partner Zara Officer discusses the recent matter of Rahman v Health Care Complaints Commission [2021] NSWCA 247, an inappropriate prescribing case against Dr Abdul Bassel Rahman.

The offending conduct occurred over a period of 5 years, between 2011 and 2015. In May 2021 the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal decided to cancel the practitioner’s registration, and directed that he not seek a review for a period of 12 months. The practitioner appealed to the NSW Court of Appeal.

The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency removed the practitioner’s name from the register soon after the Tribunal orders were made.

The case is noteworthy because it leaves no doubt that once cancellation of registration has occurred, the Tribunal cannot later order reinstatement, pending an appeal.   


They do things differently in New Zealand: Appanna v Medical Board of Australia [2021] VSC 679

The Supreme Court of Victoria recently came to a decision in the matter of Appanna v Medical Board of Australia [2021] VSC 679.  The doctor concerned in this matter entered into an intimate relationship with a woman in New Zealand.

The Medical Council of New Zealand subsequently suspended the doctor’s practising certificate – although the suspension was later stayed by the District Court in New Zealand on the doctor’s undertaking to practice with conditions on his registration while his professional conduct was investigated.

In September 2019, the doctor advised the Australian authorities of what had transpired in New Zealand.  The Medical Board of Australia imposed an interim suspension on the doctor’s registration in Australia, on the same basis as the suspension was imposed in New Zealand.  AHPRA revoked the suspension, on becoming aware of the New Zealand District Court decision to terminate the suspension.  However, shortly thereafter the Medical Board of Australia reimposed the interim suspension in Australia, on a different basis.

The doctor appealed to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal, but the Tribunal confirmed the suspension.  The doctor appealed to the Supreme Court of Victoria.


Recent Developments in Notifications Under 'Claims Made and Notified' Policies and Section 54 Insurance Contracts Act

Unusually, in the second half of 2021 there have already been two cases relating to notifications under ‘claims made and notified’ policies, which have looked at whether an Insured’s failure to notify facts and circumstances that have the potential to give rise to a claim can be cured by section 54 of the Insurance Contracts Act 1984.

In this article, Insurance Partner Zara Officer discusses how the recent matters of Avant Insurance Limited v Burnie [2021] NSWCA 272 and Darshn v Avant Insurance Limited [2021] FCA 706 have clarified that omissions to notify facts and circumstances that might give rise to a claim are not omissions to which section 54 can apply.


COVID-19, Vaccinations and the Workplace –  What Employers Need to Know

In light of the recent extended lockdown in Sydney, and the new short lockdown in Melbourne, the question again arises in relation to whether an employer can require its workers to be vaccinated against the COVID‑19 virus.

There are a myriad of discretionary issues for an employer to step through in determining whether it can direct its workers to be vaccinated; as well as what steps an employer can take if the worker refuses to follow such a direction.


Holman Webb Listed as Finalist - Lawyers Weekly Australian Law Awards 2021

Holman Webb Lawyers is proud to relay that the firm has been listed as a finalist in two categories in the Lawyers Weekly Australian Law Awards 2021:

  • Law Firm of the Year
  • Insurance Team of the Year

Click through for more information on this year's finalists, and upcoming winner announcements.


Five Lawyers Included in The Best Lawyers in Australia - 2022 Edition

Holman Webb is pleased to announce that five lawyers have been included in the 2022 Edition of The Best Lawyers in Australia.


Remember: Your Personal Information is of Value to Others

HealthEngine, an online booking engine and review platform for medical practises has been hit with a $2.9M fine for sharing the non-clinical personal information of 135,000 patients.


What are we Learning From Royal Commissions and Inquiries?

Working steadily with broad coercive powers, numerous and highly visible Royal Commissions in Australia have uncovered shocking examples of corrupted cultures in organisations that must be concentrating the minds of directors everywhere.


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