Kiwi litigants undeterred by ANZ class action victory

by 29 Jul 2016
Kiwi litigants won’t be deterred by Australia’ High Court dismissal of a class action appeal against ANZ bank over charges, a lawyer for the class action said.
Andrew Hooker is one of the lawyers representing the Fair Play on Fees litigation group, which launched a case against ANZ New Zealand back in 2013 and against Kiwibank the same year.
“It's not going to cause us to throw in the towel,” Hooker said of this week’s High Court ruling in favour of the bank in Australia that cast doubt over class action suits against banks in New Zealand which were put on hold, pending the outcome of appeals.
The court ruled that ANZ is entitled to charge late payment fees on credit card accounts and that such fees do not amount to unconscionable conduct, marking the end of a whopping six-year legal battle between the bank and 43,000 customers backed by IMF Bentham.
According to a report by the NZ Herald, Fair Play on Fees would be seeking a conference with a judge in the next month in the hope of getting a timetable for a trial.
“It would have been nice if the Aussies had won [but the Australian judgment] isn't necessarily one a New Zealand court would agree with,” Hooker told the Herald.
But the groups lawyers are considering the implications of the judgment.
Australian specialist class action firm Slater & Gordon and litigation funding firm Litigation Lending Services are backing the Fair Play on Fees group.