Australian Senate provides update on aluminium composite cladding use

Following concerns with the use of aluminium composite cladding in Australia, on 5 September the Senate Economics References Committee released its interim report on aluminium composite cladding as part of the broader non-conforming building product inquiry. The report is substantive (100 pages) and the recommendations made are summarized as follows: The Commonwealth Government urgently implement a…

Americans biggest buyers of NZ land since 2010

Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) has released figures detailing approved land investments by area since 2010, grouping buyers by country. The results are as follows: USA:                168,154 hectares UK:                    66,932 hectares Israel:                52,325 hectares Switzerland:      36,965 hectares China:               34,908 hectares The land bought has overwhelmingly been used for forestry and agriculture.

A positive economy reversing the ‘brain drain’

For years the case has been that New Zealand has been suffering a ‘brain drain’, with many of its qualified workforce choosing to emigrate across the ditch to pursue warmer climates and (generally) higher wages in Australia. Now with New Zealand’s recent positive economic growth, the increased demand for workers in the Christchurch rebuild, and…

Contract repudiation – Knowing your rights

It is important that parties to a contract know their rights under a contract. Firstly so that they can perform the contract as they are required to; but also so that they know when they are entitled to terminate and when they are not. A recent case in New South Wales highlights how getting the…

Care needed around communication of privileged information

A recent Australian decision found that a party had waived legal privilege by providing a report to their insurers: Asahi Holdings (Australia) Pty Ltd v Pacific Partners Pty Ltd (No 2) [2014] FCA 481. The plaintiffs purchased Flavoured Beverages Group Holdings Limited (FBG) from the defendants and in accordance with the terms of the sale…

The importance of hiring competent subcontractors

In Australia two recent decisions have emphasised that a head contractor does not have a duty to ensure a subcontractor’s system of work are adequate where the subcontractor is competent and employed for a specialty task. This principal was set out by the Australian High Court in Leighton Contractors Pty Ltd v Fox [2009] HCA…

Be careful what you warrant for

A recent case in Australia provides a timely reminder that a party should consider the implication of providing a warranty, and if necessary, take steps to manage any possible financial implications. Clark v Macourt [2013] HCA 56 concerned a breach of a contractual warranty given as part of an asset purchase. The interesting part about…