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Wednesday, 1 December 1976


Mr Lionel Bowen asked the AttorneyGeneral, upon notice:

(   1 ) Has he authorised any officer of the Australian Public Service under section 170(2) of the Trade Practices Act 1974 to authorise the grant of legal of financial assistance in relation to the proceedings referred to in section 170 ( 1) of that Act.

(2)   To what applicants and in what proceedings has legal or financial assistance been (a) granted and (b) refused under section 170 (2) (i) prior to 1 1 November 1975 and (ii) subsequent thereto.


Mr Ellicott - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1)   No.

(2)   I do not think it appropriate to make public information about particular applicants for legal aid who are entitled to expect that information supplied would be kept confidential. I would, however, be prepared to make it available to the member, if he wishes, on a confidential basis. I can, however, supply the following information:

(a)   I am informed that three applications for fiancial assistance were approved prior to 1 1 November 1975 to enable the applicants to appear before the Trade Practices Commission on the hearing of applications for authorisation under section 88 of the Trade Practices Act of exclusive dealing agreements.

I am informed that applications for financial assistance were approved after 1 1 November 1 975 in respect of the following matters:

(a)   To enable the applicant to appear before the Trade Practices Commission on the hearing of an application for authorisation under section 88 of restraint of trade agreements relating to the accreditation of advertising agencies.

(b)   To enable the applicant to appear before the Trade Practices Commission on the hearing of an application under section 88 of exclusive dealing arrangements limiting borrowers' choice of insurance companies for insuring the mortgaged property.

(c)   To three applciants to enable them to defend prosecutions instituted by the Trade Practices Commission for an alleged contravention of the restraint of trade provisions (section 45) of the Act

(d)   To three applicants to enable them to appeal to the High Court of Australia against a ruling of the Australian Industrial Court on the question of the onus of proof under section 45 (2) of the Act

(e)   To enable the applicant to institute an action against a company for damages arising from the termination of a dealership agreement that it is alleged contravened sections 45 and 46 of the Trade Practices Act.

(f)   To enable the applicant to institute an action for damages against a company following the termination of a franchise agreement.

(g)   To enable the applicant to defend an action for damages for alleged breach of section 46 ( 1 ) (a) and (c) and section 48 of the Act.

(h)   To enable the applicant to institute an action for damages arising from alleged breaches of sections 45 and 46 of the Act.

(i)   To two applicants to enable them to institute an action against a company arising from an alleged breach of sub-sections 47 (3) and (4) of the Act.

(j   ) To enable the applicant to institute an action for damages against three companies arising from alleged breaches of section 52 of the Act.

I am informed that no applications for financial assistance were refused prior to 11 November 1975. Applications for financial assistance were, I am informed, refused after 11 November 1 975 in respect of the following matters:

(a)   To enable the applicant to defend a prosecution by the Trade Practices Commission for an alleged breach of the restraint of trade provision (section 45) of the Act.

(b)   To enable the applicant to appear before the Trade Practices Commisiion on the hearing of applications for authorisation under section 88 of the Trade Practices Act of exclusive dealing agreements.

(c)   To enable the applicant to institute an action for damages for alleged breaches of the restraint of trade provision (section 45) and the exclusive dealing provision (section 47 ) of the Act.

(d)   To enable the applicant to institute an action for damages against a company for alleged misleading and deceptive conduct (section 52(1)) and false representation (section 53(a)(0).

(e)   To cover the costs of the applicant at the public hearing of its application for authorisation under section 88 of the Trade Practices Act of exclusive dealing agreements.

(   f) To cover the costs of an application to the Trade Practices Commission for authorisation or clearance of a mutually exclusive merger proposal between the applicant and another company for the control of a third company.

(g)   To cover the applicant's costs to be incurred in appearing before the Trade Practices Commission on the hearing of applications for authorisation under section 88 of the Act.







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