Frances Williams

Partner. Brisbane.

61 7 3228 9332 |   |  vCard
Frances Williams

If the dispute involves construction, administrative law, negligence, breach of contract, trade practices or telecommunications, Frances Williams is the litigator you want in your corner.

A frontline strategist, Frances regularly appears on behalf of clients in the superior and appellate courts, as well as in various Commonwealth tribunals.

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If the dispute involves construction, administrative law, negligence, breach of contract, trade practices or telecommunications, Frances Williams is the litigator you want in your corner.

A frontline strategist, Frances regularly appears on behalf of clients in the superior and appellate courts, as well as in various Commonwealth tribunals.

With more than 15 years’ experience in litigation and trial law, Frances knows all the ins-and-outs of commercial dispute resolution and has offered her sound and considered advice to a gamut of Australia’s major companies and organizations.

Frances was awarded the Sir Robert Menzies Memorial Scholarship in Law in 1996 to complete a Masters in Law at the University of Cambridge.

“Best Lawyer - Litigation, ADR & Regulatory” Best Lawyers Peer Review
Frances Williams

Frances' Expertise

  • Major disputes Acted for construction and mining clients including Thiess, Clough Limited, Pan Australian Resources Pty Ltd, BGC Contracting Pty Ltd, SunWater, the Outrigger Group, Downer EDI Mining and QGC Pty Limited in relation to contractual and trade practices disputes and negligence claims; advising on options and strategy for alternative dispute resolution, dealing with court proceedings or pre-litigation dispute management.
  • Judicial and merits review - ACCC and AER Acted for the ACCC and AER in proceedings seeking judicial and merits review of administrative decisions in respect of telecommunications access and competition, and electricity and gas price regulation. Frances has acted for the AER in the Australian Competition Tribunal in merits review proceedings concerning the distribution and transmission determinations under the National Electricity Law for New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia and is currently acting in respect of Victoria; and the gas access arrangement under the National Gas Law for the ACT.
  • Enforcement litigation - ACCC Acted for the ACCC in enforcement proceedings against large and small companies commenced under the Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth) (now the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) including for contraventions of section 45 (alleging an arrangement or understanding fixing prices), section 52 (misleading or deceptive conduct), section 51AD (non-compliance with the disclosure requirements of the Franchising Code of Conduct) and section 51AC (unconscionability in relation to the imposition of unilateral fee increases).
  • Landmark penalty order Acted for the ACCC against Telstra in proceedings seeking penalties for breaches of the Telecommunications Act and Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth) access obligations. Telstra was ordered by the Federal Court to pay a pecuniary penalty of $18,550,000 to the Commonwealth in respect of its contraventions. This was the first such penalty ordered under the Telecommunications Act and was one of the largest penalties for anti-competitive conduct that has been ordered to date.
  • Commercial litigation Acted for major companies in general commercial litigation matters, including Telstra, National Australia Bank, the Brisbane Airport Corporation and various Commonwealth and State entities.
  • Electronic trial management Acted for a major accounting firm in large-scale litigation involving a claim for auditor’s negligence and breaches of the Corporations Law. The proceedings ran for 104 sitting days and was conducted by way of an electronic court book. Frances was responsible for the day-to-day management of electronic discovery, exhibits, electronic transcript and logistics for a team of barristers, solicitors, technology consultants and administrative staff.

What others say

  • “Lawyer of the Year - Regulatory Practice - Brisbane” Best Lawyers Peer Review, 2018
  • “Best Lawyer - Construction/Infrastructure Law” Best Lawyers Peer Review, 2014-2020
  • “Best Lawyer - Alternative Dispute Resolution and Regulatory” Best Lawyers Peer Review, 2013-2020
  • “Best Lawyer - Litigation” Best Lawyers Peer Review, 2012-2020

Frances' Thinking

Frances' Leadership

  • Queensland Law Society Litigation Rules Section Committee Member
  • Queensland Law Society Member