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Elizabeth Macknay

Elizabeth Macknay

Partner

Perth
Australia

Liz is a commercial litigator and helps clients resolve disputes primarily in the mining and energy sectors.

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Experience

Liz works with clients to avoid and manage complex commercial litigation, contentious regulatory matters, bribery and corruption issues, and international arbitrations. She specialises in advising clients about the unique risks and sensitivities – both legal and commercial – that arise from matters involving contentious regulatory issues and bribery and corruption.

Based in Perth, she has worked with clients based in and outside Australia for over 15 years to help them resolve disputes. Her experience encompasses all forms of dispute resolution including mediation, litigation, expert determination and arbitrations (both domestic and international).

Liz has helped clients manage and resolve non-insolvency schemes of arrangement, shareholder disputes, shareholder and directors meetings, and directors duties. She also supports and guides clients to navigate their way through their domestic and foreign anti-bribery and corruption obligations both at the preventative stages, for example, setting up compliance and training programs, and when conducting internal investigations or responding to investigations.

In addition to representing clients in Australian State and Federal Courts, and in international and domestic arbitrations, Liz regularly assists clients in their dealings with various regulators including the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), the Western Australian Corruption and Crime Commission (CCC) and the Western Australian Economic Regulation Authority (ERA).

Several leading legal publications and guides have acknowledge Liz’s expertise and named her amongst the best lawyers.

Doyle’s Guide 2016 named her one of the leading Perth Litigation & Dispute Resolution Lawyers. She was also named on the ‘Best Lawyers in Australia’ list for Corporate/Governance Practice and Litigation three years running (2014, 2015 and 2016); for Alternative Dispute Resolution (2015, 2016) and for Mining Law 2016.

Liz is an active  member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, the Australian Mining and Petroleum Law Association, Transparency International, the Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia Working Party on Foreign Corrupt Practices and Corporate Crime and Corruption, the Singapore International Arbitration Centre Users Council, the Steering Committee of the Perth Centre for Energy and Resources Arbitration and the Western Australian Regional Council of Redkite. She is a trustee of the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA) and has been an elected member of the Legal Practice Board of Western Australia since April 2009.

Liz’s experience includes:

  • acting for Woodside Energy Julimar Pty Ltd in proceedings in the Supreme Court of Western Australia which were commenced by Armada Balnaves Pte Ltd who are claiming in the hundreds of millions of dollars from Woodside for an alleged repudiation of contract;
  • working with Brookfield Rail Pty Ltd (BR) in relation to various aspects of rail access, including advising BR in negotiations with rail access seekers, assisting BR to settle Supreme Court of Western Australia proceedings commenced by Co-operative Bulk Handling Ltd and representing BR in two arbitrations under the Railways (Access) Code 2000 (WA).
  • acting for a director of Padbury Mining Limited in Federal Court proceedings commenced by ASIC for allegedly misleading investors in breach of continuous disclosure obligations in breach of his directors duties;
  • assisting clients to achieve mergers by scheme of arrangement, including the Sirius Resources NL scheme of arrangement in 2015, the Little World Beverages Limited scheme of arrangement in 2012, the Aurium Resources Limited scheme of arrangement in 2012, the Conquest Mining Limited scheme of arrangement in 2011, the GRD Limited scheme of arrangement in 2009 and the Bolnisi Gold NL scheme of arrangement in 2007;
  • advising an ASX listed company about whether its proposed agreements with the holders of native title rights contravened anti-bribery legislation in the US, UK and Australia;
  • conducting an internal investigation on behalf of an ASX listed company into whether the establishment and implementation of a corporate social responsibility program breached Australian, UK or US anti-bribery legislation;
  • advising an ASX listed company about the bribery and corruption risks associated with proposed funding agreements with Canadian First Nations groups; and
  • acting for a Swiss company in UNCITRAL arbitration proceedings in Singapore about the termination of a coal supply contract with an Indonesian counterparty. 

Background

Liz holds a Bachelor of Laws (Honours) from Murdoch University in Perth, and a Bachelor of Arts in History and Psychology from the University of Western Australia. She has taught corporations law and international commercial arbitration at the University of Western Australia.

Liz is a member of numerous professional organisations. These include the Australian Institute of Company Directors, the Australian Mining and Petroleum Law Association, Transparency International, the Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia Working Party on Foreign Corrupt Practices and Corporate Crime and Corruption, the Singapore International Arbitration Centre Users Council, the Steering Committee of the Perth Centre for Energy and Resources Arbitration and the Western Australian Regional Council of Redkite. She is a trustee of the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA) and has been an elected member of the Legal Practice Board of Western Australia since April 2009.

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