Monday, 19 October 2015

Australia: independent contractors and fiduciary duties

The Federal Court gave judgment earlier this month in SBA Music Pty Ltd v Hall (No 3) [2015] FCA 1079. The case provides a good illustration of the circumstances in which an independent contractor, with significant management responsibilities, can be subject to statutory and fiduciary duties. The trial judge, Justice Wigney, observed: "Where reliance is placed on an independent contractor in relation to tasks of special responsibility critical to the financial and reputational well-being of the enterprise, such reliance and the trust that it involves may cause the contractor to owe fiduciary duties" (para. [14]).

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