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Frances Williams

Partner

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Frances is a litigator with over 20 years' experience. Her practice includes commercial and construction disputes, competition, anti-trust and consumer protection law, Royal Commissions, regulatory investigations, inquiries and prosecutions. Frances has extensive experience in managing large scale litigation and appeals, including electronic disclosure and electronic courtbooks.

Frances is the Deputy Chair (Brisbane) of the Law Council – BLS Competition and Consumer Committee and the Queensland Law Society Litigation Rules Committee. She is also a member of the National Association of Women in Construction.

Key deals

ASIC – MFS/Octaviar proceedings

Acting for ASIC in a claim with allegations of dishonesty in connection with the payment of almost AU$150 million from a managed investment scheme, including an appeal to the Queensland Court of Appeal and currently an application for special leave to appeal to the High Court. The trial (60 days) and the appeal (11 days) were conducted electronically. ASIC was wholly successful at trial and was successful on all grounds on appeal, except for one legal issue to be considered by the High Court.

ACCC - Thermomix in Australia Pty Ltd

Acted for the ACCC in Federal Court proceedings against Thermomix in Australia in respect of allegations of false, misleading or deceptive conduct, including a failure to disclose the risk of injury and the existence or effect of remedies for non-compliance with consumer guarantees.

LNG Infrastructure disputes

Acted for QCLNG in respect of a range of disputes including:

  • an ICC arbitration involving 4,944 pages of pleadings, over 100 witnesses and 48 experts (with a team in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne);
  • a payment dispute under the security of payment regime, covering an adjudication and application for judicial review by the Supreme Court; and
  • establishing a Dispute Resolution Board to consider disputed variations and preparing submissions to a panel consisting of an engineer, lawyer and quantity surveyor.

AER Electricity and Gas reviews

Acted for the AER since 2008 in various administrative reviews by the Australian Competition Tribunal and related judicial review proceedings in the Federal Court in respect of decisions under the National Electricity Law and the National Gas Law determining electricity and gas regulated prices.