Firm / Organisation

Phi Finney McDonald

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This content is provided by Phi Finney McDonald.

Directors: Ben Phi, Odette McDonald, Tim Finney
Principals: Brett Spiegel, Paul Zawa, Roop Sandhu, Jeremy Zimet
Number of Special Counsel: 2
Number of Lawyers: 18

Firm Overview:
Phi Finney McDonald is one of Australia’s leading class action law firms, with offices in Sydney and Melbourne. The firm specialises in class actions and other types of complex and large-scale litigation. Its founding Principals previously led the class actions practice at one of Australia’s largest plaintiff firms. With over forty years’ litigation experience and twenty-five years of specialist class actions experience, the firm’s founders have achieved almost half a billion dollars in class action settlements.
Phi Finney McDonald has established the trust and confidence of some of the largest institutional investors in the world. Our repeat clients include some of the largest and most influential pension schemes, private investors, sovereign wealth funds, and investment platforms across the Asia Pacific, North America and Europe. The class action against the Commonwealth Bank of Australia was instigated by US institutional investors including the Californian State Teachers Retirement System, and the Teachers Retirement System of Texas (Texas TRS) who instructed the firm to commence a closed class action for the benefit of institutional investors and their members.
In a highly competitive market, Phi Finney McDonald won contested carriage motions for lead counsel status in high profile class actions against BHP Billiton and GetSwift. The firm has received judicial praise for developing innovative litigation funding structures that reduce costs and improve client returns. The firm has also commenced securities class actions against LendLease, Estia Health, and Westpac. Phi Finney McDonald is unique in the Australian market.
While our lawyers have the experience and relationships of a large, corporatised plaintiff law firm, they operate within a lean, boutique structure with minimal overheads, and a purpose-built IT platform. This allows the firm to provide top quality legal services, but at a much lower cost than its rivals.

Main Areas of Practice:

Class Actions

5 Partners, 18 fee earners in Melbourne, Australia
2 Partner, 2 fee earners in Sydney, Australia

CBA Class Action
This case has been issued on behalf of investors who acquired CBA shares between 16 June 2014 and 3 August 2017 (inclusive). On 3 August 2017, Australia’s anti-money laundering authority, Austrac, announced that it had commenced proceedings against CBA. Austrac alleged in those proceedings widespread non-compliance by CBA with anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing (AML/CTF) requirements.

BHP Class Action
The class action seeks recovery of investor losses incurred up to 30 November 2015, caused by BHP Billiton Limited’s (BHP) violations of the Corporations Act in relation to the catastrophic collapse of the Fundão dam in Brazil. Dominos Class Action Phi Finney McDonald is conducting a class action against Domino’s Pizza Enterprises Limited for widespread underpayment of delivery drivers and in-store workers employed at franchise stores.

Lendlease Class Action
Phi Finney McDonald has filed a class action against LendLease arising from disclosures to the market on 9 November 2018 and 25 February 2019. The class action alleges that LendLease breached its continuous disclosure obligations and engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct in relation to the issues within its ESB division.

Westpac Class Action
Phi Finney McDonald filed a class action against Westpac Banking Corporation (Westpac) in relation to its breaches of anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing (AML/TF) legislation. This potential claim follows the AUSTRAC proceeding commenced against Westpac on 20 November 2019, alleging 23 million breaches of the Anti-money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006 (Cth) (AML/TF Act).

Key Clients:
Californian State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS)
Teachers Retirement System of Texas (Texas TRS)
Colorado Public Employees’ Retirement Association (CoPERA)
Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management Board (Mass PRIM)

Contact Name:
Andreas Costi, Head of Client Engagement
Email: [email protected]
Tel: +61 3 914 7152