The NSW Department of Justice has issued a consultation paper for issues raised by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse about civil litigation reform. The consultation paper deals with three major issues: expanding the duties of institutions to prevent child abuse; ensuring that survivors can easily identify a proper defendant to civil claims; and requiring institutions to have insurance cover for child abuse. Public submission on issues raised in the consultation paper are open until 5pm on 4 September 2017.
In the case of Polwarth v Woolworths Ltd  QDC 133 (19 May 2017), Woolworths has avoided paying more than $140,000 in damages after surveillance footage of a customer who slipped on a grape in February 2014 revealed his claims about an injury caused by the accident were “inconsistent”.
In State of New South Wales v DC  HCA 22 (14 June 2017), the High Court of Australia has revoked a grant of special leave to appeal against a decision of the Court of Appeal of the Supreme Court of NSW [see DC v State of New South Wales  NSWCA 198].
Under section 96 of the South Australian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2013 [the SACAT Act] there was a requirement created for an independent review of the operation of the South Australian Civil and Administrative Tribunal [SACAT] to be undertaken following SACAT's first two years of operation. That review has now been announced and the terms of reference for the review have been circulated.
The Commonwealth Government has released a discussion paper on the introduction of a civil penalty regime for non-consensual sharing of intimate images. The paper sets out the proposed details of the civil penalty regime, including possible information gathering powers and enforcement mechanisms. The Government foreshadowed the release of the paper in an announcement made last year by Minister for Women Michaelia Cash, who told ABC News that the criminal process could be too slow for victims, who were often more concerned with whether the image could be removed.
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