Class Actions

Sometimes a problem seems so large, it is hard to know where to look first for a solution.

Class action litigation is becoming more and more common in Australia. Recent legislative and regulatory developments at the Commonwealth and state level have made it easier than ever to commence a class action. The litigation funding industry continues to mature and fuel new claims each day. In a fast-changing environment, Government departments and the private sector are increasingly at risk of mass claims.

Whether a class action concerns product liability, mass tort, shareholder or financial products, public interest issues or one-off natural disasters, Henry Davis York is ready to advise and assist to mitigate the risk and manage and defend any claims that may arise.

How we can help

HDY has extensive experience managing complex class action litigation. We act in multiple party litigation, undertaking acclaimed, innovative work for large organisations in media- and politically-sensitive matters.

We recognise that facts and issues in potential class actions cannot be considered in isolation. Our team of expert litigators look beyond the facts and issues to tailor a nimble and effective program to resolve any class action litigation at the earliest possible stage.

We routinely develop and support dispute resolution schemes to avoid or minimise the impact of large-scale class actions. We have experience developing novel settlement protocols to manage large groups of claimants, to reduce the size and scope of claims, and to reduce the expense of litigation.

HDY maintains an exclusive register of current and threatened class actions in Australia and overseas. Our professionals have a thorough understanding of class action rules, tactics, and successful settlement strategies in matters involving significant competing interests.

Our relevant experience

Some of our experience includes:

  • Defending Volkswagen AG, AUDI AG, Skoda Auto a.s. and their Australian subsidiaries Volkswagen Group Australia and Audi Australia in five overlapping class actions in the Federal Court of Australia arising out of diesel emissions.
  • Acting for the Octaviar Group in a class action brought by unitholders in one of Octaviar's funds.
  • Acting for an insurer in a shareholder class action brought against the retailer Billabong.
  • Advising insurers on coverage and strategy issues for claims relating to several class actions and other proceedings involving breach of directors' and officers' duties by various directors of one of Australia's largest companies.
  • Advising a number of financial services companies in relation to class actions.
Stephen Gorry

Success is a team effort. Celebrating our victories is best experienced in numbers.