New report shows Maurice Blackburn in a class of its own

20 August 2015
Australia’s number one class action law firm, Maurice Blackburn Lawyers, has stamped its market-leading position with a standout performance in terms of compensation recovered for victims of mass wrongdoing, according to a new report.

The report, produced by defendant firm KWM, highlights that in the past year, class actions in Australia have recovered around $950 million for victims of wrongdoing. Further research shows that one firm, Maurice Blackburn, accounts for more than 93 per cent of the total.

National head of class actions at Maurice Blackburn, Andrew Watson, said the large recoveries his firm had obtained – in excess of $889 million – showed the benefits of the class actions regime.

“Clearly the record Black Saturday bushfires settlements of a combined total of nearly $800 million account for the bulk of the recoveries. The clients in those cases suffered the worst possible types of losses imaginable, and we’re proud to have delivered them some measure of justice through the actions we took,” Mr Watson said.

Mr Watson said that check and balance on corporate conduct extended across a variety of industries and different cases, with aggrieved shareholders recovering $69.45 million in the Leighton Holdings case, and consumers of soy milk Bonsoy recovering $25 million after falling ill.

“The report shows that Maurice Blackburn has run the cases with the four largest settlements in the past year, accounting for more than $889 million of the full year’s recoveries across the entire industry.

“To achieve that in less than a handful of cases shows how powerful and important an element these class actions can be in driving better corporate behaviour, particularly when run by the leading experts in the field.

Mr Watson noted that the report showed only 10 shareholder class actions had been filed in the past year, with half of those filed by a new entrant that has yet to succeed on any case.

For more information on class actions and corporate conduct, register to attend the 2015 Corporate Conduct and Class Actions Symposium on Wednesday September 2nd in Melbourne, at www.mauriceblackburn.com.au/symposium