News

Can A Company Provide Financial Assistance To A Person To Acquire Shares In The Company?

The High Court of Australia in Connective Services Pty Ltd v Slea Pty Ltd [2019] HCA 33 was concerned with two shareholders who used their combined voting power to initiate proceedings in the name of a group of companies against a third shareholder who proposed to sell his interest, in contravention of a pre-emptive rights provision of the companies’ constitution. In upholding the Court of Appeal’s decision to dismiss the proceeding against the third shareholder, the High Court illustrated the circumstances in which financial assistance by a company to a shareholder will be prohibited by section 260A of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth).

Victoria Airs Laws To Chase “Dodgy Builders” For Cladding Issues

Victoria has announced new laws allowing the state government to chase builders for the cost of cladding rectification, prompting the main industry body, the Victorian Building Authority, to fume that it is being singled out for a problem caused by many players, including the government.

Landlords Unreasonably Withholding Consent to Sub-Lease: Masters Home Improvement v Aventus

Most franchise systems that have franchisees operating a retail site will be subject to State based retail shop leases legislation. Masters Home Improvement Australia Pty Ltd v Aventus Cranbourne Thompson Road Pty Ltd [2019] VSC 428 is a recent Victorian Supreme Court decision regarding a landlord withholding consent to grant a sublease over part of an empty retail space subject to the retail shop leases legislation in Victoria. Justice Croft found in favour of the tenant, Masters, and held that the commercial interests claimed by the landlord, Aventus Cranbourne, to justify the refusal to consent to the sublease were unreasonable.

Tenant and Landlord Disputes: Unusable Premises

The recent Supreme Court of Victoria decision in Brondolino v Surf Coast Smash Masters Pty Ltd [2019] VSC 505 provides an excellent overview of the difference between ‘possession’ and ‘occupancy’, and on the calculation of compensation due and payable to a Tenant who is unable to use leased premises for the specified purpose in the context of the Retail Leases Act 2003 (Vic).