Brett Cook advises banks and other financiers, insolvency practitioners, government and semi-governmental entities, and corporate clients on all aspects relating to secured recovery work, restructurings and workouts, receiverships, voluntary administrations, deeds of company arrangement and liquidations.

Brett has extensive experience in conducting significant and complex litigation matters across a range of issues and industries.

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Expertise

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Litigation and Dispute Resolution

Brett is also an experienced litigator and has managed numerous substantial litigation matters.

Brett has advised in respect of, and conducted, various claims relating to professional negligence by valuers, auditors, engineers and surveyors. Brett has also been retained on the full gambit of contractual disputes, ranging from disputes concerning multi-million dollar completion adjustments through to claims for damages pursuant to coal sales agreements, building contracts and investment banking mandates.

Brett is also advising on a range of disputes in the energy and resources sectors relating to port infrastructure, and to access to land for the purpose of mining and coal seam gas exploration. He has also advised on a range of joint venture and shareholder disputes in those sectors.

Banking litigation: Brett has acted in respect of a broad range of issues on behalf of most of the principal Australian banks including challenges to the bank’s securities, priority disputes, proceedings for possession, marshalling and obligations to account, demands pursuant to (and restraining demands pursuant to) bank guarantees, proceedings against guarantors, cheque fraud and insurance / regulatory claims arising from bank products and services.

Insolvency litigation: Brett has conducted all forms of insolvency litigation ranging from pursuing and defending voidable transaction claims, claims against receivers and managers for alleged sales at undervalue, claims for breach of directors’ duties due to insolvent trading and asset stripping, public examinations, proof of debt appeals and applications for the approval of remuneration.

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Restructuring and Insolvency

Brett has advised Australia's leading financial institutions in relation to their secured recovery work across all sectors of their portfolios. In spite of the prolonged period of economic growth that preceded the global financial crisis, Brett's specialist experience has seen him in high demand from 1st and 2nd tier lenders and mezzanine financiers for more than 10 years. Amongst others, he has acted for National Australia Bank Limited, Suncorp-Metway Limited, BOS International (Australia) Limited, Capital Finance Australia Limited, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Westpac Banking Corporation and Investec Bank (Australia) Limited.

As a result, Brett has a depth of knowledge and relationships within the banking and insolvency sectors which is not bettered in the Queensland market. Brett's experience includes receiverships of property developments and construction companies, rural and agricultural businesses, airlines, retail and other trading enterprises, mining companies, investment schemes, hotels and pubs, aged care facilities and retirement villages, to name only a few.

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Restructuring

Brett has undertaken major debt restructuring work arising from the insolvency or near insolvency of substantial corporate clients. He advised the Australian subsidiaries of Parmalat Finanziaria SpA, following the multi-billion dollar global collapse of that group.

Insolvency

He has also advised administrators and deed administrators in relation to significant voluntary administrations conducted in Queensland and elsewhere over the last decade, including:

  • Pegasus Gold Australia Pty Ltd
  • Greyhound Pioneer group of companies
  • Flight West Airlines Pty Ltd
  • Ansett
  • Queensland Mushrooms group
  • BMA Gold Limited and Twin Hills Operations Pty Ltd
  • Merino Pty Ltd
  • McDonald Keen Group Pty Ltd and MK Group Services Pty Ltd 

Brett has advised or is advising clients in relation to the following insolvency administrations:

  • Westpoint group of companies
  • ABC Learning Centres group of companies
  • Octaviar group of companies
  • Meridien Marinas group, including the Port of Airlie Project.

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Debt Trading and Special Situation Investing

Brett has undertaken major debt restructuring work arising from the insolvency or near insolvency of substantial corporate clients. He advised the Australian subsidiaries of Parmalat Finanziaria SpA, following the multi-billion dollar global collapse of that group.

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Investigations and Crisis Management

Brett has defended numerous clients who have found themselves the subject of ACCC and ASIC investigations. He has acted on behalf of insolvency practitioners who have been the subject of disciplinary proceedings before the CALDB and other regulatory bodies such as the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia.

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Knowledge

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