Wingecarribee Shire Council

Lehman Brothers sign being taken awaySummary – Federal Court rules Lehman Brothers Australia is financially liable for misleading clients including Church and Not-For-Profit Groups to purchase complex financial products.

In Wingecarribee Shire Council v Lehman Brothers Australia Ltd (in Liq) [2012] FCA 1028, the Federal Court of Australia has held that Lehman Bros Australia Ltd (In Liq), which was formerly called Grange Securities Ltd (Grange), is liable to compensate the 3 plaintiff Councils for losses incurred as a result of investing in highly complex investment products called collateralised debt obligations (products).

In this matter the 3 Councils led representative proceedings or a ‘class action’ on behalf of 72 other Councils, charities, Church and Not-For-Profit groups who collectively lost over $200million when the products purchased from Grange prior to 2008 either plummeted in value or were completely wiped out during the global financial crisis (GFC).  While only the claims of the 3 Councils were tested by the Court in these proceedings, as these are representative proceedings the Court can resolve issues of fact and law involving the representative applicants and the respondent that are common to claims that other group members have against the same respondent. Continue Reading Lehman Brothers class action – a win for NFPs