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This was a shareholder class action on behalf of persons who purchased shares in AMP Ltd (AMP) between May 2012 and April 2018. The proceeding arose from revelations of AMP’s misconduct during the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry, to the effect that for several years AMP had knowingly been charging clients ongoing fees for no service in various contexts, and had misled ASIC on repeated occasions when reporting to ASIC regarding its charging of fees for no service. The plaintiffs alleged that by failing to disclose this information, and making certain statements to the market, AMP engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct and breached its continuous disclosure obligations. 

On the eve of trial, the parties reached an in-principle agreement to settle the proceeding for $110 million, inclusive of costs. In this judgment, Elkaim AJ approved the proposed settlement, including proposed deductions for legal and settlement administration costs. His Honour was satisfied that the settlement was fair and reasonable and in the interest of class members, including in light of the contested issues capable of impeding the range of quantum and success on liability. His Honour approved the following deductions from the settlement sum: 

  • $26.2 million for the plaintiffs’ legal costs and disbursements; 
  • $32,000 for each of the plaintiffs’ reimbursement payments; and 
  • $1.13 million for pre-approved settlement administration costs (with Maurice Blackburn to act as scheme administrator). 

After the above deductions, $82.6 million will be distributed to class members, being 75% of the settlement sum.

Komlotex Pty Ltd v AMP Limited (No 4) [2023] NSWSC 1378

Supreme Court of New South Wales, Elkaim AJ,
14 November 2023

Plaintiffs’ Solicitors: Maurice Blackburn
Defendant’s Solicitors: Herbert Smith Freehills
Plaintiffs’ Funder: N/A

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