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Australia What law is the WA Government passing to prevent Clive Palmer seeking billions of dollars in legal damages?

13:20  12 august  2020
13:20  12 august  2020 Source:   abc.net.au

Cormann calls on Clive Palmer to drop legal challenge to WA border

  Cormann calls on Clive Palmer to drop legal challenge to WA border Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has personally called on mining magnate Clive Palmer to drop his constitutional challenge to WA's border restrictions.Prime Minister Scott Morrison dropped the federal government's involvement in the case, which will be argued before the High Court in coming months.

Key points The WA Government is seeking new laws to block the damages claim Mr Palmer is already taking legal action against WA over its hard border The McGowan Government 's bill seeks to prevent WA from paying the damages which it says

A billion legal stoush is brewing between the WA Government and Clive Palmer , bigger than Billion - dollar lawsuit. The latest fight between Palmer and the WA Government began last night "The damages have to be assessed and we’re in the process of seeing what is the damages , when

a close up of Clive Palmer wearing a blue shirt: Clive Palmer is seeking potentially billions of dollars in damages from the WA Government. (AAP: Dave Hunt) © Provided by ABC NEWS Clive Palmer is seeking potentially billions of dollars in damages from the WA Government. (AAP: Dave Hunt)

According to the WA Government, it is an unprecedented but necessary action to avoid the risk of bankrupting the state by being forced to pay tens of billions of dollars to a mining magnate the Premier has described as "an enemy of the state".

According to Clive Palmer, WA's actions are unlawful, unfair, "abolish natural justice" and will deter companies from investing into the state in the future.

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Clive Palmer at his press conference on the Gold Coast on Wednesday, where he threatened to take the When asked about the apparent breach of Queensland Health’s protocols to prevent the potential Palmer signalled that he would go to the high court to challenge the constitutionality of the

Clive Palmer is so keen to get into Western Australia he’s taken the state to court. The Commonwealth first supported Mr Palmer , but then pulled out

Whichever side you believe, the stoush between the McGowan Government and Mr Palmer is extraordinary — both in terms of the dollar amount at stake and the state's intervention to attempt to make legal processes go away.

So, how did we get here, and what happens now?

What is Mr Palmer doing?

Mr Palmer, Mineralogy and International Minerals have an arbitration claim against the WA Government over decisions made by the ex-state development minister — and premier — Colin Barnett, in the early 2010s, about the Balmoral South iron ore project.

As part of arbitration, which is a legally binding process, Mr Palmer and his lawyers have argued proposals for Balmoral South were unjustly refused, costing him billions.

Mr Palmer wanted to develop that project as a mine and sell it to a Chinese-owned entity, a proposal Mr Barnett first refused in 2012.

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Clive Palmer is chasing .8 billion in damages from the Federal Government -appointed liquidators of his Townsville nickel refinery, arguing it never needed to close its doors. Mr Palmer , his nephew Clive Mensink and 19 other people are being sued for about 0 million by liquidators PPB Advisory

Clive Palmer tells court he still controls billions of dollars . Liquidators counter Clive Palmer claim Claim lodged by company’s government -appointed liquidators has ‘no legal basis’, businessman says. Clive Palmer ’s nephew and former QN director fails to appear to answer a summons after

The legal battle over that has been running for more than six years, but exploded into public view on Tuesday when Attorney-General John Quigley revealed the proceedings in State Parliament and claimed Mr Palmer was seeking close to $30 billion in damages, costs and interest.

There is also another claim for an unspecified amount, meaning the true figure is likely well above $30 billion.

And what is the Government doing about that?

In that same speech, Mr Quigley revealed the Government wanted to introduce "extraordinary and unprecedented" legislation to make the legal fight go away.

The bill the Government wants to rush through State Parliament would terminate Mr Palmer's legal claim, prevent him from lodging another and cancel his right of appeal.

It also extinguishes the legal liability of anyone connected to the State Government, related to the matter.

It would represent a never-before-seen intervention in a mining state agreement process in WA.

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The idea also has the support of the WA government , with Aboriginal affairs minister Ben Wyatt telling the inquiry that his draft legislation, due to be Ultimately whatever agreements you have, the government , of either colour, is going to consider the billions of dollars or iron ore is worth more to

Clive Palmer struggled to explain a pledge to repay nickel refinery workers owed money. "At the same time as he is boasting about having 'four-thousand-million dollars ', he left workers stranded During the Channel Nine interview, Mr Palmer sought to counter criticism from the Labor Party over

Will it work?

First, the Government needs to rush the bill through State Parliament — it wants that done this week, when normally it would take weeks or months to pass legislation.

The Liberals and Nationals have both decided to support the legislation, so it is now set to pass.

The timeframe is also doable, if the Opposition agrees — but that is in some doubt, with Liberal leader Liza Harvey proposing a committee inquiry that would delay the legislation for weeks.

How that plays out will become clear in the Upper House on Thursday.

The Liberals only found out the plan at the same time as the public, but have received extensive briefings as the Government attempts to convince the Opposition to support it.

But the passage of the bill is not necessarily the end of the matter — with it a near-inevitability that Mr Palmer would challenge the legislation in court (more on that later).

Why is this such a big deal?

Intervening in a legal process in this way is an extraordinary step with potentially enormous consequences.

Mr Palmer claims the legislation is unconstitutional and will scare business off from investing in WA, by damaging its reputation as a trusted and reliable trading partner.

Clive Palmer sues WA Government for at least $30b over Balmoral iron ore project

  Clive Palmer sues WA Government for at least $30b over Balmoral iron ore project Mining billionaire Clive Palmer and his company Mineralogy are suing the WA Government for nearly $30 billion in relation to the Balmoral South iron ore project in the Pilbara region.The WA Government is introducing urgent legislation in State Parliament in an attempt to deal with the claims.

Damages : An Overview. Damages refers to the sum of money the law imposes for a breach of some duty or violation of some right. Compensatory damages , like the name suggests, are intended to compensate the injured party for loss or injury. Punitive damages are awarded to punish a wrongdoer.

Clive Palmer , Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. WA Attorney General and Premier must respect legal system: Palmer . Clive Palmer said today it was astounding that the “The Attorney General is the chief law maker of Western Australia and the defendant in this matter before the Federal Court.

Governments of all persuasions have long been desperate to avoid creating "sovereign risk", or being seen as unreliable or untrustworthy, with resources companies.

Critics say this legislation will do just that, but WA insists this is an unusual situation and would not create a dangerous precedent.

"The McGowan Government accepts this bill is unprecedented … but Mineralogy and Mr Palmer are not normal," Mr Quigley said.

Plus, there's the enormous dollar figures in question.

Can the state afford $30 billion?

In a word, no.

To put it into context, a bill that high would equate to $12,000 for every single West Australian.

It would roughly be the size of the State Government's revenue pool for an entire year and almost double WA's debt.

$30 billion would also be enough to build 16 Perth Stadiums, for comparison.

"A payment of $30 billion would cripple the state of Western Australia," Mr McGowan said.

What happens if the legislation passes?

Mr Palmer's claim would be terminated and his legal rights over it effectively extinguished.

But that almost certainly would not be the end of the road.

Mr Palmer has already threatened to challenge the legislation in the High Court, which has the power to overturn it.

That's not without precedent either — a bill passed in somewhat similar circumstances by the former Barnett government related to the collapse of Bell Group was thrown out by the High Court after it ruled the matter unconstitutional.

Clive Palmer's WA damages claim set to be blocked as bid to delay urgent legislation fails

  Clive Palmer's WA damages claim set to be blocked as bid to delay urgent legislation fails Legislation to block a $30 billion damages claim by Clive Palmer is set to pass WA Parliament after the Nationals and the Greens chose not to back a move to refer the bill to a committee for further scrutiny.Attorney-General John Quigley said the state could not afford any delays.

But Mr Quigley said there was a "very low" risk of the bill being ruled unlawful.

Even if the legislation passes, Mr Palmer will still own the iron ore in the ground for the Balmoral South project.


Video: WA Govt introduces legislation to stop Palmer payout (ABC NEWS)

WA Govt introduces legislation to stop Palmer payout
  What law is the WA Government passing to prevent Clive Palmer seeking billions of dollars in legal damages? ABC NEWS See more videos
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Latest Clive Palmer lawsuit against WA seeks more damages for 'unconscionable conduct' .
Queensland businessman Clive Palmer launches another lawsuit against the state of Western Australia, this time seeking additional damages for "unconscionable conduct".Mr Palmer's latest claim is in addition to approximately $30 billion he is demanding as part of an iron ore dispute with the State Government.

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