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coal mines, coal, gas, climate change, environment, ECoCeQ, Plibersek, Narrabri, Hunter Valley, emissions, mines, anthropogenic, net zero, threatened species, fossil fuel, fossil fuel projects
29 Feb 2024

Court says coal mines can be approved without considering climate change

In a significant legal blow to environmentalists, in 2023 the Federal Court ruled that the federal environment minister does not have to consider climate change when approving coal mines. Environmental group claims minister did not consider climate change The Environment Council of Central Queensland (ECoCeQ) mounted a legal challenge to minister Tanya Plibersek’s assessment of […]
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business disruption, damages, road works, construction, delay, inconvenience, compensated, class action, lawsuit, trackwork, avoidable, unreasonable, light rail, unreasonable interference, private nuisance
01 Feb 2024

Success in class action for business disruption due to Sydney light rail roadworks

A recent Supreme Court judgment may open the way for businesses to claim damages from the government if they lose income due to business disruption as a result of major road works. Construction of light rail causes significant business disruption Two Sydney small business owners took Transport for NSW to court after they lost income […]
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generative AI, artificial intelligence, AI, large language model, ChatGPT, Bing Chat, writing, intellectual property, copyright, Copyright Act, creative concept, human author, writer, fair dealing, OpenAI
08 Dec 2023

Can I claim copyright if I write a novel or research paper using generative AI?

Are there rules around claiming copyright if I write a novel or a research paper using generative AI? If I ask a large language model like ChatGPT or Bing Chat to put together a paragraph or two on some topic and include it in my writing, can I claim it as all my own work? […]
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Sending an innocent emoji in a text message could land you in court, because the law could see it as a threat or an acceptance of a contract.
30 Nov 2023

How an emoji can land you in court

We often add an emoji to our emails and text messages to bring a bit of levity to otherwise dull communications, but beware – icons such as the thumbs up, smiley face or gun could land you in trouble with the law. Legal impact of using emojis An emoji is an image used in texting […]
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outsourcing, employer, employee, ground crew, Qantas, sacked, dismissed, industrial action, enterprise bargaining, Fair Work Act, penalty, restructure, workforce
23 Nov 2023

Qantas acted illegally in sacking 1700 ground crew and outsourcing their jobs

The recent unanimous High Court ruling declaring Qantas’s actions illegal in sacking nearly 1700 workers and outsourcing their roles is very significant, although possibly not for the reasons most people might think. Outsourcing as a strategy to avoid industrial action The judgment does not mean employers cannot reduce the size of their workforce by outsourcing […]
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return to the office, office, work from home, WFH, employer, company, employee, worker, productivity, employment, contract, disciplinary action, dismissal, workplace, flexible work, Fair Work Act
31 Oct 2023

Can the boss force you to return to the office?

While Covid lockdowns are a thing of the past, many Australians have subsequently opted to not return to the office. The latest statistics show that on average, city workers spend one third of their work week at home, with many working from home full-time. Companies introduce mandatory office days This leaves offices largely deserted, but […]
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nuclear waste, nuclear waste dump, traditional owner, Barngarla, Kimba, South Australia, Lucas Heights, ballot, Federal Court, waste dump, consult, consultation, storage, radioactive, enriched waste, submarine, AUKUS
11 Oct 2023

Court rejects nuclear waste dump after challenge by traditional owners

Coalition government claimed dump site had support of local community When the previous coalition government announced a national nuclear waste dump would be built on a 211-hectare farm near Kimba in South Australia, it proclaimed it had the support of local people. The dump would take low-level radioactive medical waste and temporarily store intermediate-level nuclear […]
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identity theft, ID theft, stolen identity, damages, trademark, infringement, cybersquatting, PayPal, Adidas, NBA, Medibank, password, hacking, debtor, jurisdiction, enforce, seizure, counterfeit
22 Sep 2023

Australian victim of identity theft receives US$1.2 million damages bill from US court

An Australian woman who was a victim of identity theft was shocked when she received a legal notice from the United States ordering her to pay Adidas and the US National Basketball Association a total of US$1.2 million in damages. Identify theft victim told to pay US$1.2m in damages Without her being present or even […]
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directors duties, director, company, business, listed, ASX-listed, stock exchange, ASX, continuous disclosure, ASIC, penalty, Australian Securities & Investments Commission, overseas, abroad, care, diligence
09 Aug 2023

Warning – directors duties still apply when touting for business overseas

While it may be tempting for company directors to somewhat exaggerate their company’s assets and abilities when promoting their firm overseas to garner fresh business investment, it is important to note that directors duties still apply. Dangers of breaching directors duties while abroad A company director might, for instance, tell prospective foreign investors that their […]
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farm trespass laws, farm, farming, agriculture, ag-gag laws, animal welfare, animal advocate, animal cruelty, animal rights, video, covert, footage, private property, slaughterhouse, transparency, whistleblower, live export, greyhound, horse racing, cruelty
18 Jul 2023

NSW farm trespass laws upheld by High Court

In 2022 the High Court upheld the NSW farm trespass laws, also known as the “ag-gag laws” that make it a criminal offence for animal welfare advocates and others to publish covert video footage taken as a result of trespassing on private agricultural property. Challenge to constitutionality of farm trespass laws Animal protection group Farm […]
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insider trading, stock exchange, stock market, market, shares, share price, buy shares, sell shares, Corporations Act, ASIC, Australian Securities & Investments Commission, ban, corporation, trust, public trust, invest, investor
11 Jul 2023

Insider trading might be tempting, but don’t risk it

What is insider trading? Insider trading occurs when a person or company uses information that is not available to the public to make a profit, or avoid losses, on the stock market. Consider these situations. You work for a mining company that has just struck gold but won’t announce it for a few days.  You […]
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cancel online subscriptions, subscription trap, online, business, cancel, payment, credit card, statement, charge, consumer, consumer law, deceptive, manipulative, online marketing, ACCC, penalty, breach, personal information
06 Jul 2023

New laws to tackle subscription traps and make it easier to cancel online subscriptions

Many of us have had difficulty trying to cancel online subscriptions that just keep on being charged to our credit cards. Difficulties faced by Australians trying to cancel online subscriptions It’s often a website that offered a free trial and discounts when you joined up, but you don’t use it anymore. However, there it is […]
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non-disparagement clause, contract, unfair, term, clause, penalty, fine, breach, company, business, small business, big business, false, misleading, unconscionable, harassment, coercion, safety, cartel
29 Jun 2023

Beware the non-disparagement clause

Unfair contract terms can include non-disparagement clause Soon there will be 50 million reasons to be wary of the non-disparagement clause in contracts, as the federal government has increased penalties under Australian consumer law for breaching unfair contract terms. This can involve including a controversial non-disparagement clause in a contract, aimed at stopping people saying […]
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foreign workers, migrant worker, worker, employer, employee, exploitation, mistreatment, minimum wage, underpaid, underpayment, visa, working visa, temporary visa
22 Jun 2023

Tougher penalties for employers to protect foreign workers

The federal government is moving to protect foreign workers and new migrants who are at risk of exploitation by bringing in new laws making it a criminal offence to coerce a person into breaching their visa conditions. New laws to protect foreign workers Employers or agents who coerce migrants or foreign workers into breaching their […]
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AI, artificial intelligence, ChatGPT, regulation, law, hallucination, AI control, AI system, AI regulation, digital, technology, deepfake, National AI Centre
15 Jun 2023

New laws coming to curtail artificial intelligence (AI)

Lawyer’s use of AI program confirms its unreliability A New York lawyer was embarrassed to admit using artificial intelligence (AI) program ChatGPT when preparing his courtroom legal argument, after it was exposed to have cited several court cases that didn’t exist. When the judge and opponent lawyers couldn’t find the cases, the lawyer discovered ChatGPT […]
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unfair contract, contract, consumer, small business, franchise, penalty, breach, consumer law, competition, turnover, legislation, unfair term, standard form, standard form contract, cyber hacking, cyber security, data collection, data use, data retention, data
07 Jun 2023

Unfair contract penalties increased to protect consumers and small businesses

Tougher penalties for unfair contract terms and consumer law breaches Legislation has passed federal parliament to increase penalties for unfair contract terms and breaches of consumer law. Maximum penalties for breaches of consumer law increase from $10 million to $50 million. (Please see Speech on the Treasury Laws Amendment (More Competition, Better Prices) Bill 2022, […]
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ChatGPT, AI, artificial intelligence, chatbot, Microsoft, defamation, generative AI, accuracy, falsehood, OpenAI, whistleblower, defamatory, publishing, publication, claimant, bot
18 May 2023

Inventiveness of ChatGPT poses risk of defamation

The sudden emergence of ChatGPT and artificial intelligence (AI) chatbots as a feature of everyday life has opened up a new frontier in digital communication and content creation. However, the capacity of the technology to create false information raises the threat that those who disseminate such falsehoods can be sued for defamation. What is ChatGPT? […]
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04 May 2023

Companies warned of need for market disclosure following cyber attack

ASIC and the courts have shown they are serious about clamping down on companies that breach continuous disclosure laws. This includes companies which do not notify their shareholders of a cyber attack. Record fine for not following market disclosure laws The corporate regulator Australian Securities & Investments Commission recently levied a record $15 million fine […]
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