We provide advice on a broad range of areas covering economic and business regulation. We have a track record of being influential in the introduction of new policy initiatives, providing us with a unique insight into the relevant regulatory regimes.
Our team was involved at an industry level with the development and introduction of the new AML/CTF regime and we have been influential in helping to shape Australia’s and New Zealand’s AML/CTF laws.
We understand the policy behind the law and know how the regulator (AUSTRAC) thinks. We advise clients on ongoing changes to the law and the AML/CTF Rules and assist them in making submissions on those changes.
We have drafted AML/CTF programs and implementation procedures for clients in both the financial services and gambling industry sectors. These include customised solutions for specific clients and standard form templates for industry-wide use.
We have also conducted independent reviews of AML/CTF programs and reported to boards and senior management on compliance, and we continue to advise clients on the meaning and intention of the law and the AML/CTF Rules and guidelines. Our advice is directed to increasing client understanding and finding practical and workable solutions which ensure ongoing compliance.
We advise our clients on their trade practices obligations when they are organising their supply arrangements and when entering into agreements with other businesses.
Our services include:
- advising clients on the Competition and Consumer Act (formerly the Trade Practices Act) and the introduction of the Australian Consumer Law;
- providing trade practices advice on the purchase or sale of a business, for example we provide specific advice on trade practices obligations and deal structuring;
- providing trade practices advice on supply contracts, such as drafting terms and conditions of sale, distribution agreements, licensing agreements to ensure the best possible outcome for our client and to ensure that they are compliant with the Competition and Consumer Act (formerly the Trade Practices Act); and
- negotiating with the ACCC and representing clients at meetings with the ACCC, for example, during an investigation.
We understand that what constitutes good corporate governance varies from entity to entity; there is no one model that fits all. The legislation under which an entity is created, its purpose, the nature of its governing body and its stakeholders are all important in determining the appropriate corporate governance model.
We believe that corporate governance must assist an entity in achieving improved performance and effectiveness, in addition to ensuring compliance. Our team has significant experience in providing corporate governance advice to governmental bodies and corporations, including:
- advice on the roles and duties of board members
- drafting protocols and governance policies
- implementation of board reviews
- compliance with statutory reporting obligations
- probity reviews and implementation.
Our energy and water regulation team has a long track-record in the energy and water industries as advisers to governments and regulators, and we offer both a legal and a practical understanding of the functions of energy and water market operators.
We have worked extensively on transmission, distribution, trading and retailing of energy since 2000 for energy policy makers and regulators and we provide regulatory advice in relation to water authorities' obligations.
We understand the economic perspectives of energy and water users and the different types of market participants, as well as the position of policy makers and regulators. Much of our work has involved working with regulators in industry consultation and seeking the right regulatory outcomes for our clients, often in the face of pressure.
Our experience includes:
- drafting codes and guidelines
- advising on the application of laws, codes, guidelines, MOUs
- advising on the National Energy Law and the National Energy Rules
- advising on the Water Act, the Essential Services Commission Act, the Electricity Industry Act, the Gas Industry Act and the Water Industry Act
- proving advice to regulators on their interactions with government or quasi-government bodies, including ombudsmen
We also provide a full range of services around the development and delivery of energy and resources initiatives in Australia and overseas. We also offer advice and services in specialised areas such as EPC and EPCM alliancing, water rights negotiation and finalisation, and transport and logistics issues. Read more about how we can assist you in relation to energy and resources.
In response to the global financial crisis, financial services regulation is expanding into previously unregulated spheres of financial activity. Financial services enterprises are subject to increasingly complex and onerous compliance requirements.
We assist new and innovative financial services enterprises to navigate the legal and regulatory landscape from applying for an Australian Financial Services Licence, to preparing disclosure documents and dealing with regulators. We guide our clients in the establishment of funds, the preparation of compliance plans and systems, the implementation of risk management systems and other regulatory requirements.
We have a thorough understanding of the gambling regulatory framework across Australia. This understanding goes across all the forms in which gambling services are delivered (casinos, TABs, race tracks, telephone and internet) and all the different types of gambling products. Our team members have worked in gambling companies.
We advise gambling operators (casinos, sports and corporate bookmakers, TABs) as well as gambling suppliers (of gaming machines, related equipment and systems).
Our practice is full service. We advise on the regulatory requirements of starting a new business or acquiring an existing business. We can assist you with new licence applications and transfers of ownership of existing licences. We help our clients negotiate and draft a wide range of contracts needed to run a successful gambling business. These have included employment and technology contracts.
Using our collective knowledge of the Australian industry and overseas equivalents, we provide advice on practical and cost effective compliance solutions and risk management tools. We can assist you in your direct dealings with regulators.
Our team members are acknowledged industry experts, who have profile within the industry. They regularly speak at industry forums. Their views on legal and industry trends are regularly sought out.
We have an in-depth understanding of the public policy initiatives driving the regulation of markets. We advise on a range of issues, including access or regulatory issues involved in corporate transactions and acquisitions.
In addition, we have industry-specific knowledge of the commodities markets, such as the national electricity market and electricity trading, carbon, water and omissions trading.
Client success story
We assisted a New Zealand entity to navigate the anti-money laundering legislation in New Zealand. Our advice included submissions to the New Zealand Government and appearing before the relevant Parliamentary Committee.
Our involvement was significant, as we were able effect change at the legislative level, both before and after the introduction of the Bill into Parliament.