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Our Class Action Experience

Slater and Gordon has an outstanding record in class and group actions

From the first, to the biggest, to ground breaking and historic victories, Slater and Gordon has an outstanding record in class and group actions. Our most recent class action successes are listed below:

Sigma

Slater and Gordon represented over 600 aggrieved shareholders in proceedings against Sigma Pharmaceuticals, alleging that they overstated their results in the first half of 2010, issued misleading profit guidance and failed to comply with their continuous disclosure obligations.

In December 2012, the Federal Court of Australia approved a settlement of this claim and Sigma paid $57.5 million to our clients.

Nufarm

Slater and Gordon issued a class action against the agricultural company Nufarm, alleging that the company issued a misleading profit forecast in 2010 and that it failed to comply with its disclosure obligations. The claim was ultimately settled for $46.6 million in November 2012.

Centro

In the biggest shareholder class action settlement in Australian history, Slater and Gordon won compensation for about 5,000 mainly ‘mum and dad’ retail investors in the retail property group, Centro. The claim involved allegations that Centro and its auditor, PricewaterhouseCoopers, had misled shareholders by failing to disclose billions of dollars of soon to expire debt. When it settled in May 2012, our clients shared in a $50 million payment from the company and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Oz Minerals

In 2011, Slater and Gordon obtained a $16 million settlement on behalf of over 7,500 retail investors in the mineral resources company, Oz Minerals. The claim alleged that Oz Minerals had understated its debt in 2008 by about $300 million and had failed to disclose the full extent of its refinancing difficulties.

Fincorp Collapse

The collapse of property finance company, Fincorp, placed the savings of thousands of older Australians in jeopardy. In an Australian first, Slater and Gordon commenced a representative proceeding against the trustees of Fincorp, alleging that they had failed to comply with their statutory obligations.

In May 2011, the claim was settled for $29 million, which was distributed amongst 5,000 investors.

Cranbourne Gas Leaks

In March 2011, Slater and Gordon negotiated a $23.5 million settlement for more than 750 home owners whose properties were affected by a methane gas leak from a disused landfill site in outer Melbourne. The compensation was paid by the EPA and the local council and was to account for falls in the values of our clients’ properties, along with the loss of use and enjoyment of their homes.

Storm Financial

We helped over 1000 investors obtain compensation following the collapse of financial planning company Storm Financial in 2008.  We negotiated a resolution scheme with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia in 2010 which allowed our clients to obtain fast, equitable settlements that were tailored to their circumstances, while avoiding legal costs and protracted litigation. Settlements included both cash pay-outs and revised home loan terms, allowing many financially impoverished investors to hold onto their family properties.

Fuel Surcharges

Airlines introduced a fuel surcharge on international airfares in an attempt to defray costs but refused to pay commission to travel agents on the surcharge. This was in breach of the contract between IATA airlines and travel agents. In a world first, Slater and Gordon successfully brought a class action on behalf of Australian travel agents against Qantas, British Airways, Air New Zealand, Singapore Airlines and Cathay Pacific for the recovery of that commission going back to 2004. Slater and Gordon obtained a judgment against Qantas and reached settlements with the other airlines. Following this win international airlines now pay commission on the fuel surcharge to all IATA accredited travel agents.

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