James Hardie Appeal Arguments Are Underway – Should Outside Counsel Have Been a Witness ?
As described here in an Australian newspaper article, the James Hardie appeal is underway regarding disclosure issues regarding its asbestos risks and plans for managing the situation. The case is one of two important cases on appeal in Australia. For more background on the issues, see this long prior post or any of the many posts indexed under James Hardie.
An issue on appeal is whether ASIC (the Australian version of the SEC) should have called as a witness an outside lawyer to James Hardie. The newspaper article puts it this way:
"The appeal court found that ASIC had failed to call key witness David Robb, a former partner of Allens Arthur Robinson and one of James Hardie’s main external legal advisers.
The court found Mr Robb would have been able to testify about whether the directors signed off on the misleading statement about the company’s ability to fund asbestos claims."