Latest Judgments

Judgments are generally published within 24 hours of being made available by Judges' staff, often earlier. In cases of high media interest, we endeavour to publish judgments within 1 hour of being delivered by the Court.

If you cannot find a judgment, check Federal Law Search; it will  tell you the status of the matter before the Court, including whether a judgment has been delivered.



Today's published judgments

Superannuation
Bullivant v Australian Meat Industry Superannuation Pty Ltd [2018] FCA 1588
SUPERANNUATION - whether error of law in the determination of the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal (Tribunal) under the Superannuation (Resolution of Complaints) Act 1993 (Cth) - approach of the Tribunal to the determination of whether the trustee's decision was unfair or unreasonable - whether lack of procedural fairness on the part of the trustee of itself made the trustee's decision unfair or unreasonable - whether error of law on the ground of no evidence in the statement of the Tribunal that there was no evidence that the applicant had an expectation of future financial support from the deceased - whether error of law in the Tribunal not deciding whether the applicant had repaid a debt to the deceased - whether the Tribunal gave determinative effect to the deceased's will - whether error of law in that respect - whether Court should make findings of fact that the applicant had an expectation of future financial support from the deceased and that the applicant was the only party with an expectation of future financial support - appropriate orders - whether Court should order that the entirety of the death benefit be paid to the applicant - appropriate costs order where submitting appearances
23 Oct 2018 |  ROBERTSON J


Costs ; Private International Law
Morris v McConaghy Australia Pty Ltd (No 5) [2018] FCA 1582
COSTS - whether indemnity costs should be ordered against respondent - where respondent successfully defended application for deemed service - where applicant not at fault for ineffective foreign service
19 Oct 2018 |  PERRAM J


Industrial Law
Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union v Hay Point Services Pty Ltd [2018] FCAFC 182
INDUSTRIAL LAW - whether provision of enterprise agreement providing that an employer may require an employee to work reasonable overtime is capable of being contravened by the employer for the purpose of s 50 of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) - principles of construction of an enterprise agreement
23 Oct 2018 |  REEVES, BROMBERG AND O'CALLAGHAN JJ


Intellectual Property
Dometic Australia Pty Ltd v Houghton Leisure Products Pty Ltd [2018] FCA 1573
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY - claim of infringement by the Second Respondent of patent for air conditioning unit - whether alleged infringing unit contains claims in patent - patent contains claim for a centrifugal fan - the alleged infringing unit contains a fan producing the effect of a centrifugal fan by use of surrounding apparatus - whether skilled addressee would have understood patent as including the requirement that the fan itself be centrifugal. HELD: a skilled addressee would understand the patent as requiring the fan to be centrifugal - no infringement by the Second Respondent INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY - claim that First Respondent had authorised the infringement or is a joint tortfeasor with the Second Respondent - whether (in the event infringement was established) the First Respondent had aided or joined in the alleged infringing conduct - First Respondent's trademarks, name and address used on the cartons containing products - First Respondent provided some services in relation to products which included the alleged infringing units - First Respondent a wholly owned subsidiary of the company which manufactures the alleged infringing units. HELD: If the claim for infringement had been established, the First Respondent would be a joint tortfeasor with the Second Respondent in relation to the infringement. INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY - cross-claim for revocation of patent on the basis of invalidity - claim that the patent does not describe the best method known to the applicant in performing the invention - relevant time at which the knowledge of the applicant in relation to the best method is evaluated - specification did not disclose the best method - claim that the patent applicant was in control of access to the information concerning the best method. Held: patent applicant did not know the best method of performing the invention at the time of filing the application. INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY - cross-claim for revocation of patent on the basis of invalidity - claim that the patent is not novel - whether use of an air conditioning system in a bus in China disclosed the essential integers of the patent - no disclosure of essential integers of patent - ground of invalidity fails.
19 Oct 2018 |  WHITE J


Practice and Procedure ; Industrial Law
Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union v BM Alliance Coal Operations Pty Ltd [2018] FCA 1590
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - application for interlocutory injunction pursuant to s 545 of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act) and s 23 of the Federal Court of Australia Act 1976 (Cth) - alleged adverse action for a prohibited reason or reasons under the FW Act - prima facie case - balance of convenience INDUSTRIAL LAW - where a mine worker had previously been reinstated by her employer after successfully unfair dismissal - where the mine worker was informed that she was no longer required at the mine - where on the night prior to being informed that she was no longer needed, the applicant purported to exercise workplace rights - where no reasons were given for the demobilisation of the mine worker - whether the mine worker exercised workplace rights as defined in the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act) - whether the decision that the mine worker was no longer needed was made prior to the purported exercise of workplace rights - whether adverse action was taken for a prohibited reason or reasons in contravention of s 340 of the FW Act - whether the application is statute barred as a result of s 725 of the FW Act
22 Oct 2018 |  COLLIER J


Bankruptcy
Coshott v Prentice [2018] FCAFC 179
BANKRUPTCY - appeals from decision of single judge of Federal Court of Australia to dismiss applications to set aside appellants' bankruptcy notices - where bankruptcy notices issued as appellants failed to pay debts arising from taxation of costs certificate issued against them in related proceeding - where appellants argued that notices should be set aside due to offsetting claim - whether debt the subject of offsetting claim efficaciously assigned to appellants - whether primary judge erred in extending time for compliance with bankruptcy notice in absence of application - whether taxation of costs certificate misleading or defective - appeals dismissed BANKRUPTCY - appeal from another decision of single judge of Federal Court of Australia to grant application to set aside respondent's bankruptcy notice - where bankruptcy notice issued as respondent failed to pay debt incurred as trustee arising from taxation of costs certificate issued against him in related proceeding - whether bankruptcy notice an abuse of process - appeal dismissed
19 Oct 2018 |  KERR, FARRELL AND GLEESON JJ


Insurance
Zurich Australian Insurance Limited, in the matter of Zurich Australian Insurance Limited [2018] FCA 1567
INSURANCE - transfer of insurance business - application to dispense with the requirements of s 17C(2) of the Insurance Act 1973 (Cth)
17 Oct 2018 |  YATES J


Migration
FKP18 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection [2017] FCA 1555
MIGRATION - application to review a decision of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal - refusal to revoke mandatory cancellation of visa by delegate under s501CA(4) of Migration Act 1958 (Cth) - application of Ministerial Direction No 65 - whether Tribunal erred in failing to consider the significance of the applicant's claim to fear harm and non-refoulement obligations in circumstances where applicant could apply for protection visa - whether BCR16 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection [2017] FCAFC 96 distinguishable because of identity of decision-maker - whether Tribunal erred in failing to consider applicant's evidence about conduct in immigration detention - where High Court decided in Falzon v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection [2018] HCA 2 that s 501(3A) not invalid for the reason that it conferred judicial power on the Minister - held BCR16 v Minister for Immigration and Border Protection [2017] FCAFC 96 not distinguishable - decision of the Tribunal set aside for jurisdictional error of kind identified in that case
18 Oct 2018 |  KENNY J


Education
Commonwealth of Australia v Wright Solution Qld Pty Ltd [2018] FCA 1575
EDUCATION - penalties - where multiple contraventions of ss 117(1) and 121 of the National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Act 2011 (Cth) (NVR Act) by first respondent and where second respondent involved in those contraventions - where first respondent contravened ss 117 and 121 of the NVR Act by providing, or offering to provide, Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses or parts of VET courses, and purporting to issue VET statements of attainment, at a time when it had ceased to be a registered training organisation as a result of its non-compliance with relevant standards and requirements - where respondents admitted contraventions - where joint statement of agreed facts - where agreed submission on appropriate range of penalties - where co-operation on the part of the respondents
18 Oct 2018 |  ROBERTSON J


Practice and Procedure ; Consumer Law
Philipsen v American Medical Systems LLC (No 2) [2018] FCA 1580
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - representative proceeding - interlocutory application by respondent for order under s33K of the Federal Court of Australia Act 1976 (Cth) that amendments made to description of group take effect from date of amendment - where description of group appeared in statement of claim and not originating application - whether applicant representing one of two sub-groups could represent members of both sub-groups - source of power to make order - scope of s33K - effect of amendments to group description - where amended statement of claim also named member of second sub-group representative applicant of that sub-group - whether claims made in statement of claim on behalf of both sub-groups were in respect of, or arose out of, the same, similar or related circumstances under s33C(1)(b) - whether claims gave rise to a substantial common issue of law or fact under s33C(1)(c) of the Act - need for certainty in definition of group members - whether order sought in interlocutory application should be granted
19 Oct 2018 |  KATZMANN J


Practice and Procedure ; Discovery
Beijing Hua Xin Liu He Investment (Australia) Pty Ltd v Lu (No 2) [2018] FCA 1583
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - application for leave to amend statement of claim - consideration of relevant delay in bringing application - amendments also challenged on basis that claims untenable - case management principles - leave granted
19 Oct 2018 |  BANKS-SMITH J


Practice and Procedure ; Discovery
Slaven v Tisot [2018] FCA 1579
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - interlocutory application seeking leave for the first defendant to represent the second defendant and requesting vacation of the scheduled hearing and an extension to the existing timetable - leave granted for the first defendant to represent the second defendant - application otherwise dismissed
19 Oct 2018 |  GRIFFITHS J


Administrative Law
Productivity Partners Pty Ltd v Commonwealth of Australia [2018] FCA 1562
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW - judicial review of decisions refusing to pay vocational education provider under Higher Education Support Act 2003 (Cth) - where respondents seek dismissal of application for judicial review as incompetent or, alternatively, summary judgment - whether decisions were made under an enactment - whether applicant's legal rights altered or otherwise affected - whether relief available under s39B of the Judiciary Act 1903 (Cth) - originating application dismissed
19 Oct 2018 |  RANGIAH J


Migration
AFY18 v Minister for Home Affairs [2018] FCA 1566
MIGRATION - cancellation of visa on character grounds - Tribunal affirming decision not to revoke cancellation - whether Tribunal erred in failing to assess the prospect that the applicant would face indefinite detention if visa cancellation not revoked - Tribunal assessed prospect of indefinite detention - Tribunal found applicant a person to whom Australia owed non-refoulement obligations - prospect of indefinite detention assessed as not inevitable - whether task of Tribunal required a finding to be made as to definite detention on the balance of probabilities - whether Tribunal erroneously deferred a part of its task to the decision-maker responsible for determining the applicant's pending application for a protection visa - Tribunal placing little weight on impediments applicant may face if returned to his home country - Tribunal proceeding on assumption Australia would comply with its non-refoulement obligations - no jurisdictional error affecting weight - application dismissed
19 Oct 2018 |  CHARLESWORTH J


Corporations Law
Beattie v Gray, in the matter of Control Rail Pty Limited (in liq) [2018] FCA 1524
CORPORATIONS - application by a liquidator for a warrant to search for and seize company books and records pursuant to s530C of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) - whether liquidator had taken sufficient steps to justify the issue of a warrant - whether the books and records of the company were within the "possession" of the Defendant - application granted
09 Oct 2018 |  FARRELL J