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(07) 3221 4999
Gold Coast
44 Davenport St,
Southport 4215
(07) 5532 3133
24 Hour Crime Line
0488 999 980 or 18004POTTS








Potts Lawyers > Litigation

The Risks Inherent to Litigation, and How to Avoid Protracted Litigious Proceedings

By Jason Papoutsis What is Litigation? Litigation is the process of resolving legal disputes through the court system. Litigation can be initiated by either an individual or a corporation and involves the parties presenting their cases in a formal legal proceeding. Litigation typically involves the preparation of pleadings, the discovery of evidence, motion practice, and the presentation of evidence in court. The ultimate goal of litigation is to resolve the dispute and to obtain a judgment or verdict that is legally binding on the parties. Litigation can be a complex, time-consuming, and expensive process, and it is often advisable to consider alternative dispute...

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A Quick Guide to Queensland’s Modernised Defamation Laws

By Jason Papoutsis What is Defamation? Defamation is the publishing of unsubstantiated information which damages a person's reputation. To be considered defamatory, a statement must be false, communicated to a third party, and cause harm to the reputation of the person or organization in question. Defamation is considered a civil wrong and can result in a claim for damages by the person or organization who has been defamed. When determining whether a statement is defamatory, the Court will consider several judicial principles.  Most commonly the Courts will consider whether a reasonable person seeing, hearing, or reading the matter will likely: lead to a...

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Workplace Investigations for Serious Misconduct

By: Jason Papoutsis    Workplace Investigations Generally A workplace investigation for misconduct refers to a process where an employer or an appointed third party investigates allegations of improper, unethical, or illegal behaviour by an employee in the workplace. The purpose of the investigation is to determine whether the misconduct took place, the extent of the misconduct, and who was responsible. This information is then used to make informed decisions about appropriate disciplinary action or other remedial measures. The alleged misconduct being investigated can range from harassment, discrimination, theft, fraud, and other forms of unethical behaviour. Misconduct can also involve allegations of failing to abide by the...

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What to do if you are served a Statutory Notice to Attend an Interview or Produce Documents or Information

By Jason Papoutsis Introduction A growing number of regulatory agencies in Queensland and Australia have statutory powers to compel a person to produce documents or attend an interview. First and foremost, failing to comply with these notices may amount to an offence.  It is therefore important to obtain legal advice if you are served with this type of notice. Depending on the enabling legislation, there may be an exemption to having to comply with that notice, for example, if a person has a ‘reasonable excuse’, or for any other reason stated in that legislation. Before a person decides whether or not they will comply...

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What Every Professional Needs to know About Occupational Disciplinary Law

What is Occupational Disciplinary Law? Occupational disciplinary law refers to the legal framework that governs the disciplinary actions that can be taken against workers in a specific occupation or industry. This framework typically outlines the standards of conduct expected of workers, the procedures for investigating allegations of misconduct, and the possible consequences for violations, such as suspension, termination, or revocation of a license. Occupational disciplinary law may also include provisions for procedural fairness, such as the right to respond to an allegation, the right to a hearing, and the right to review that decision in a Tribunal.   How is Occupational Disciplinary Law different...

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The role of the Briginshaw Principle in Workplace Investigations involving Serious Misconduct

What is the Briginshaw principle? The Briginshaw principle derives from Briginshaw v Briginshaw (1938) 60 CLR 336, which is an important case in the development of the common law, and it established several key principles that continue to be applied in many legal contexts, including workplace investigations. The Briginshaw principle does not change the standard of proof in workplace investigations but rather guides the decision-making process in assessing the evidence. Generally, the Briginshaw principle holds that when determining whether an allegation of misconduct is proved, the decision-maker must take into account the seriousness of the consequences of the finding, the seriousness of...

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I’ve received a letter from an insurance company seeking to recover money from me because someone was injured in a motor vehicle accident. What do I do?

Your heart drops. You’ve received a letter from an insurance company or their lawyers seeking to recover money from you, and you don’t know what to do or how to feel. In our experience, it is not unusual for clients to be beside themselves and have many loaded questions, particularly if the motor accident happened a long time ago. If you’re in this situation and you’re reading this article, the first step is to simply breathe and compose yourself. The next step is to read the contents of this article below and call our firm to discuss the legal aspects of your...

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Department of Education – Show Cause Notice Before Prohibition Notice

Introduction In Queensland, the Department of Education (the ‘Department’) is the regulatory authority that can investigate suspected non-compliance with the Education and Care Services National Law (Queensland) 2013 Act (the ‘Act’) and the Education and Care Services National Law (Queensland) Regulations 2011. The Department has a wide range of powers under the Act and Regulations to take action against individuals or companies that are regulated by these laws. If a person receives a show cause notice from the Department in relation to a prohibition notice, usually this could also mean that there will be further correspondence (if not already received) from other regulatory...

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Office of the Health Ombudsman Investigations and Requirement to Provide Information or Attend

The Health Ombudsman generally investigates complaints where a complaint has been made which may amount to professional misconduct or the subject of the complaint may pose a serious risk to persons. Receiving a letter from the Office of the Health Ombudsman (Health Ombudsman) stating that they are investigating a complaint is undoubtedly a stressful and concerning time for a health practitioner or health service organization. It can be equally problematic for people who are required to provide information or attend a meeting as required by the Health Ombudsman. We appreciate that being the subject of an investigation by the Health Ombudsman may...

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ABC News Interviews Bill Potts on the Costly Dangers of Defamatory Social Media Posts

The ABC has recently published an article in relation to a Queensland woman who was ordered to pay $279,000 in damages to a couple she defamed in a Facebook group.  The matter was heard in the District Court in Townsville and the judgement was handed down on Friday 23 June 2023. The alleged post was only online for merely 90 minutes before it was taken down, and the publication alleged improper conduct towards a six-year-old child, and was ruled by Judge Coker as being “entirely improper, unjustifiable and lacking in bona fides where the defendant knew that the imputations contained within...

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