Commercial Contracts, Banking, Finance and Insurance Sub-area NPA logo with link NPA logo with link

Commercial Contracts, Banking, Finance and Insurance Sub-area

About this Sub-Area

This Sub-area includes matters relating to:

  • commercial contracts
  • insurance
  • banking
  • finance
  • commercial transactional disputes.

Insurance List

In early 2016, the Court established an Insurance List within this Sub-area.

The aim of the insurance list is to provide the insurance commercial community (underwriters, reinsurers, brokers and insureds) with a way to promptly and efficiently resolve legal disputes without the need for lengthy hearings.

The list is not intended to deal with all insurance claims, but principally short matters relating to:

  • policy interpretation
  • the operation of insurance legislation.

The list will cover marine as well as non-marine insurance.

The Insurance List arrangements outline how this list operates within the Court.

Practice Notes

All practice notes are to be read with the Central Practice Note.  It is the essential guide to practice in the Federal Court in all proceedings.

The NPA practice note sets out the arrangements for the management of Commercial and Corporations proceedings in this sub-area:

NPA Practice Note:

Other general practice notes and Court developed guides which may be relevant to this Sub-area include:

General Practice Notes:


Forms, Rules & Fees

Filing fees for commencing a proceeding in this sub-area may apply. Information about Court fees, including the fees payable and circumstances where an exemption or deferral can be given is available in Forms, Fees & Costs or from the Registry.

A person may commence a proceeding in this sub-area by filing:



If commencing an Insurance List matter, practitioners should take note of the arrangements for the Insurance List.

Parties should consider whether it is necessary to file a Genuine steps statement (Form 16) in certain proceedings in this NPA - see r 8.02 of the Rules and the Civil Dispute Resolution Act 2011 (Cth) (including sections 6, 7 and 16).

Latest Judgments

  • 16 Jan 2020: Swashplate Pty Ltd v Liberty Mutual Insurance Company trading as Liberty International Underwriters [2020] FCA 15
    INSURANCE - where helicopter damaged during transit from Mississippi to Sunshine Coast - whether applicant entitled to indemnity for repair costs under Aviation Helicopter Single Transit policy - construction of master slip, placement slip, policy wording and Institute Cargo Clauses A (2009) - effect of Static Cover extension - timing of…
    Judge: Allsop CJ
  • 7 Jan 2020: Mandhan v Toyota Finance Australia Limited (No 2) [2020] FCA 3
    Judge: Besanko J
  • 20 Dec 2019: Lloyd v Belconnen Lakeview Pty Ltd [2019] FCA 2177
    CONTRACT - money had and received - failure of consideration and mistake - contract between vendors and purchasers - price included an amount payable referable to GST - GST component a distinct part of consideration paid by purchasers - vendors not liable to pay GST - purchasers sought repayment of money as a result of failure of consideration and …
    Judge: Lee J
  • 18 Dec 2019: Mandhan v Toyota Finance Australia Limited [2019] FCA 2124
    Judge: Besanko J
  • 18 Dec 2019: Carna Group Pty Ltd v The Griffin Coal Mining Company (No 2) [2019] FCA 2209
    PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - inspection of discovery - claim for legal professional privilege EVIDENCE - where claim is made by liquidator on basis of company's documents - onus - whether discharged - whether hearsay evidence is admissible - whether company officers receiving advice or solicitor giving it or usual former solicitors should have sworn…
    Judge: McKerracher J
  • 18 Dec 2019: National Australia Bank Limited v Nautilus Insurance Pte Ltd (No 3) [2019] FCA 2139
    INSURANCE - construction of insurance policy - where insured enters into settlement agreement with third party without prior consent of insurer - whether insured is required to prove underlying legal liability to pay third party separate from settlement agreement - general position at law not determinative - proper construction of contract…
    Judge: Lee J
  • 18 Dec 2019: Findex Group Limited v McKay [2019] FCA 2129
    CONTRACTS - formation - executed by director on behalf of corporation - whether signature is also binding on director personally - construction TRADE AND COMMERCE - restraint of trade -restraint in shareholders' agreement governing relationship between shareholders of financial planning business - whether reasonably necessary to protect legitimate …
    Judge: Stewart J
  • 16 Dec 2019: Polis v Zombor (No 4) [2019] FCA 2101
    PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - application for issue of warrant - contempt - whether Court satisfied that it is likely that the first prospective respondent will abscond or otherwise withdraw from the jurisdiction of the Court - where first prospective respondent already absent jurisdiction - whether Court's discretion to issue warrant should be…
    Judge: O'Bryan J
  • 16 Dec 2019: Dennis v Commonwealth Bank of Australia [2019] FCAFC 231
    ADMINISTRATIVE LAW -- appeal by leave from orders made by the Federal Circuit Court of Australia -- where the respondent made an application for summary dismissal of the appellant's claim -- where the primary judge made orders dismissing the appellant's application on the basis that the claim had no reasonable prospect of success -- apprehended…
    Judge: Greenwood, Besanko and Reeves JJ
  • 13 Dec 2019: The Owners - Units Plan No. 3115 v The Trustees of the Master Builders Fidelity Fund Scheme [2019] FCAFC 227
    STATUTORY INTERPRETATION - operation of fidelity fund scheme - where owners corporation made two claims under fidelity certificates issued by a fidelity fund approved under the Building Act 2004 (ACT) for loss flowing from alleged breaches of statutory warranties - where claims rejected by trustees of the fidelity fund on the basis the claims were …
    Judge: Robertson, Anastassiou and O'Bryan JJ


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Important note: This information is procedural advice only. You should seek your own legal advice about legal cases and procedure in the Federal Court and in this area of law.