Class Action Lawyers

Mass wrongs require a special legal solution - class actions.

Class actions allow the victims of mass wrongs to band together to better protect their rights. Class actions allow people to recover losses more efficiently and at less cost.

Maurice Blackburn has an unrivalled record in successful class actions in Australia. We have successfully brought cases for many tens of thousands of claimants in more than 20 class or group actions in relation to wrongdoing as diverse as:

  • misleading and deceptive conduct by companies towards their shareholders in takeovers, in prospectuses, and in releases to the ASX
  • price fixing and market rigging cartels
  • manufacture and sale of defective products such as breast implants, heart pacemakers, knee implants, IUDs and travel sickness pills
  • misleading and deceptive conduct through the sale of faulty home alarms to homeowners
  • the negligent operation of the Longford Gas Plant by Esso, causing death, injury and the loss of Victoria's gas supply for two weeks
  • the negligent construction and operation of the Melbourne Aquarium, causing an outbreak of legionnaires disease
  • outbreaks of mass food poisoning by restaurants, pizza houses and hotels
  • breaches of credit legislation by major banks and finance companies, and
  • improper withholding of taxation monies received from retailers by major tobacco companies.

At present, we are instructed in over 8 class or group actions in relation to serious corporate misconduct.

We also have expertise in major project litigation, including major cases such as the Longford Gas Plant Explosion Royal Commission and the Biota v GSK commercial litigation.

Shareholder and investor class actions

Maurice Blackburn has a hard-earned and unparalleled reputation in Australia for obtaining damages for shareholders against companies and their directors and corporate advisors.

Through shareholder class actions brought by us, we have played an important role in the push for better standards of corporate governance and improved accountability by companies, directors and corporate advisors to their shareholders.

Maurice Blackburn is the only legal firm in Australia with an established track record in shareholder class actions, having conducted the first and largest of such cases. We have successfully conducted, or are conducting, 13 large and complex shareholder class actions. These are class actions against GIO, Aristocrat, Multiplex, AWB, Australian Cotton, Concept Sports, TrackNet, ChallengerOZ Minerals, Centro, NAB, Nufarm and Gunns.

Cartel class actions

Maurice Blackburn is the only Australian law firm that has successfully conducted a cartel class action to recover the millions of dollars in damages suffered by the businesses that have been affected by such illicit conduct.

Price fixing and market rigging by companies causes serious damage to businesses, consumers and the general economy. Class actions are a cost-effective mechanism to allow affected businesses to recoup the financial losses they suffer at the hands of cartel participants.

Maurice Blackburn brought Australia's first ever cartel class action in 1999, the Vitamins Class Action against Roche, BASF and Aventis for an elaborate global cartel in the vitamins industry that took place over a 10-year period during the 1990s. In October 2006, a landmark settlement of $30.5 million damages was approved in the case. A wide range of businesses from small-scale livestock producers to large animal nutrition companies shared in this compensation.

In April 2006, Maurice Blackburn commenced the Amcor Class Action following the exposure of a national cartel involving corrugated fibreboard packaging (CFP) claiming compensation for the losses that businesses have suffered.

In January 2007, Maurice Blackburn commenced the Air Cargo Class Action against seven major international airlines claiming losses suffered as a result of the airline's price-fixing arrangements to set fuel and security insurance surcharges in international air freight services.

In September 2007, Maurice Blackburn commenced the Rubber Chemicals Class Action against major international chemical manufacturers Bayer and Chemtura (formerly Crompton/Uniroyal) for fixing the price of Rubber Chemicals.