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Greg Williams is internationally recognised as an experienced litigation lawyer with particular expertise in the conduct of class actions and product liability litigation.

Greg has acted in large-scale class actions for the automotive, pharmaceutical, medical device and banking industries as well as advising on regulatory issues, investigations advertising and labelling requirements, and managing product safety issues and recalls.

Greg has particular experience in acting for clients operating in the pharmaceutical and medical devices industries where his science qualifications and laboratory experience give him a special insight into and understanding of his clients' commercial imperatives and legal needs. Client feedback includes; "all matters involving pharma companies seem to cross his path; everybody goes to Greg, he's so well regarded and respected. (Chambers 2020)".

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Expertise

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Class Actions

Volkswagen Emissions: Greg is defending the VW Group in five class actions in the Federal Court of Australia, brought by two plaintiff law firms on behalf of vehicle owners and the ACCC in respect of diesel emissions issues and regulatory issues. An in principle settlement was reached in the class actions in September 2019 and approved by the Court in April 2020.

Su
baru - Takata Class Action: Greg is acting for Subaru Australia in the defence of the Takata Airbag class actions. The claims involve separate class actions against several OEMs, covering in excess of a million vehicles, which are subject to the Takata Airbag compulsory recall. The several defendants are cooperating closely in defence of the claims and Greg has been actively involved in that process. 

Bayer:
Greg is acting for Bayer in a class action commenced in the Victorian Supreme Court relating to the Essure contraceptive device.

Merck & Co., Inc. and Merck Sharp & Dohme (Australia) Pty Limited (MSDA):
Greg acted in what is considered to be the largest product liability class action in Australia in the successful defence of representative proceedings involving claimants alleging to have suffered cardiovascular injuries due to their consumption of VIOXX, a COX-2 inhibitor. On 11 May 2012, the firm secured an historic High Court win in these proceedings. Greg acted as junior counsel at the three month long first instance trial.

Storm Financial:
Greg led the team acting for the Commonwealth Bank of Australia in its defence of a class action brought by former clients of Storm Financial in the Queensland Registry of the Federal Court. The trial ran for eight months and encompassed more than 60 sitting days.  The matter ultimately settled in late 2014 before judgment was handed down.

Gravigard (Copper 7) intrauterine contraceptive device (IUD):
Greg acted in the successful defence of G D Searle & Co and Monsanto Corporation in the Australian proceedings involving the Gravigard (Copper 7) intrauterine contraceptive device (IUD).

Dust Diseases Tribunal of NSW:
Greg has appeared in the Dust Diseases Tribunal of NSW for a number of clients in the construction, shipping and oil refining industries.

Personal Injury Litigation:
Greg had appeared for and advised defendants in personal injury claims ranging from product liability, through industrial accidents, motor vehicle collisions and aircraft accidents.

See Class Actions

Product Liability

Volkswagen Emissions: Greg is defending the VW Group in five class actions in the Federal Court of Australia, brought by two plaintiff law firms on behalf of vehicle owners and the ACCC in respect of diesel emissions issues and regulatory issues. An in principle settlement was reached in the class actions in September 2019 and approved by the Court in April 2020.

Subaru - Takata Class Action:
Acting for Subaru Australia in the defence of the Takata Airbag class actions. The claims involve separate class actions against several OEMs, covering in excess of a million vehicles, which are subject to the Takata Airbag compulsory recall. The several defendants are cooperating closely in defence of the claims and Greg has been actively involved in that process.

Bayer:
Greg is acting for Bayer in a class action commenced in the Victorian Supreme Court relating to the Essure contraceptive device.

Merck & Co., Inc. and Merck Sharp & Dohme (Australia) Pty Limited (MSDA):
Greg acted in what is considered to be the largest product liability class action in Australia in the successful defence of representative proceedings involving claimants alleging to have suffered cardiovascular injuries due to their consumption of VIOXX, a COX-2 inhibitor. On 11 May 2012, the firm secured an historic High Court win in these proceedings. Greg acted as junior counsel at the three month long first instance trial.

Gravigard (Copper 7) intrauterine contraceptive device (IUD):
Greg acted in the successful defence of G D Searle & Co and Monsanto Corporation in the Australian proceedings involving the Gravigard (Copper 7) intrauterine contraceptive device (IUD).

Roche Products Pty Ltd:
Greg represented Roche Products in the successful defence of litigation concerning its prescription acne treatment, Roaccutane.

Personal Injury Litigation: Greg had appeared for and advised defendants in personal injury claims ranging from product liability, through industrial accidents, motor vehicle collisions and aircraft accidents.

Dust Diseases Tribunal of NSW:
Greg has appeared in the Dust Diseases Tribunal of NSW for a number of clients in the construction, shipping and oil refining industries.

See Product Liability

Litigation and Dispute Resolution


Volkswagen Emissions:
Greg is defending the VW Group in five class actions in the Federal Court of Australia, brought by two plaintiff law firms on behalf of vehicle owners and the ACCC in respect of diesel emissions issues and regulatory issues. An in principle settlement was reached in the class actions in September 2019 and approved by the Court in April 2020.

Subaru - Takata Class Action:
Acting for Subaru Australia in the defence of the Takata Airbag class actions. The claims involve separate class actions against several OEMs, covering in excess of a million vehicles, which are subject to the Takata Airbag compulsory recall. The several defendants are cooperating closely in defence of the claims and Greg has been actively involved in that process.

Bayer:
Greg is acting for Bayer in a class action commenced in the Victorian Supreme Court relating to the Essure contraceptive device.

Merck & Co., Inc. and Merck Sharp & Dohme (Australia) Pty Limited (MSDA):
Greg acted in what is considered to be the largest product liability class action in Australia in the successful defence of representative proceedings involving claimants alleging to have suffered cardiovascular injuries due to their consumption of VIOXX, a COX-2 inhibitor. On 11 May 2012, the firm secured an historic High Court win in these proceedings. Greg acted as junior counsel at the three month long first instance trial.

Storm Financial:
Greg led the team acting for the Commonwealth Bank of Australia in its defence of a class action brought by former clients of Storm Financial in the Queensland Registry of the Federal Court. The trial ran for eight months and encompassed more than 60 sitting days.  The matter ultimately settled in late 2014 before judgment was handed down.

CBA - Financial Advice:
Advised the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) in relation to the establishment and conduct of its Advice Review Program.  The program involves CBA reviewing financial advice it has previously provided to Customers and making them offers of compensation for inappropriate advice, is the largest program of its kind in Australia.

See Litigation and Dispute Resolution

Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme: Greg advises clients in relation to the operation of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, including strategy for engaging with the Department of Health on major and minor submissions to the PBAC and rights of review and appeal from recommendations of the PBAC.

Merck & Co., Inc. and Merck Sharp & Dohme (Australia) Pty Limited (MSDA):
Greg acted in what is considered to be the largest product liability class action in Australia in the successful defence of representative proceedings involving claimants alleging to have suffered cardiovascular injuries due to their consumption of VIOXX, a COX-2 inhibitor. On 11 May 2012, the firm secured an historic High Court win in these proceedings. Greg acted as junior counsel at the three month long first instance trial.

Janssen-Cilag:
Greg is represented Janssen in an AAT challenge to the TGA's approval of a biosimilar's product information.

Roche Products Pty Ltd:
Greg represented Roche Products in the successful defence of litigation concerning its prescription acne treatment, Roaccutane.

Gravigard (Copper 7) intrauterine contraceptive device (IUD):
Greg acted in the successful defence of G D Searle & Co and Monsanto Corporation in the Australian proceedings involving the Gravigard (Copper 7) intrauterine contraceptive device (IUD).

Relationships with Healthcare Professionals:
Greg has assisted international device manufacturers with physician engagement in Australia, including advice in relation to fellowship arrangements and speaker and consultant agreements.

Advertising Disputes:
Greg has acted for medical device companies in advertising disputes, including disputes with competitors referred to relevant industry dispute resolution Tribunals and complaints to the TGA's Complaints Resolution Panel. 

Engagement with Regulators:
Greg has worked with a number of medical device companies on their engagement with regulators.  This work has included: providing advice about Australia's medical device classification rules, assisting to prepare submissions to the TGA on a range of issues, including enforcement actions and applications to amend indications and assisting a company to respond to allegations by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency that it was improperly influencing health practitioner's patient care.

Anti-corruption and global legal obligations:
Greg has conducted an audit of medical device company's consultancy and other contract arrangements, for the purposes of managing its risk and exposure under the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

Greg has also assisted a pharmaceutical company in relation to allegations that it provided improper benefits to one of its customers.  The matter involved conducting an investigation, a subsequent review of the company's contractual templates and assisting with a Medicines Australia Code of Conduct complaint.

See Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices

Healthcare and Life Sciences

Bayer: Greg is acting for Bayer in a class action commenced in the Victorian Supreme Court relating to the Essure contraceptive device.

Merck & Co., Inc. and Merck Sharp & Dohme (Australia) Pty Limited (MSDA):
Greg acted in what is considered to be the largest product liability class action in Australia in the successful defence of representative proceedings involving claimants alleging to have suffered cardiovascular injuries due to their consumption of VIOXX, a COX-2 inhibitor. On 11 May 2012, the firm secured an historic High Court win in these proceedings. Greg acted as junior counsel at the three month long first instance trial.

Dust Diseases Tribunal of NSW: Greg has appeared in the Dust Diseases Tribunal of NSW for a number of clients in the construction, shipping and oil refining industries.

Janssen-Cilag:
Greg is represented Janssen in an AAT challenge to the TGA's approval of a biosimilar's product information.

Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme:
Greg advises clients in relation to the operation of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, including strategy for engaging with the Department of Health on major and minor submissions to the PBAC and rights of review and appeal from recommendations of the PBAC.

Roche Products Pty Ltd:
Greg represented Roche Products in the successful defence of litigation concerning its prescription acne treatment, Roaccutane.

Gravigard (Copper 7) intrauterine contraceptive device (IUD): Greg acted in the successful defence of G D Searle & Co and Monsanto Corporation in the Australian proceedings involving the Gravigard (Copper 7) intrauterine contraceptive device (IUD).

Relationships with Healthcare Professionals: Greg has assisted international device manufacturers with physician engagement in Australia, including advice in relation to fellowship arrangements and speaker and consultant agreements.

Advertising Disputes:
Greg has acted for medical device companies in advertising disputes, including disputes with competitors referred to relevant industry dispute resolution Tribunals and complaints to the TGA's Complaints Resolution Panel. 

Engagement with Regulators:
Greg has worked with a number of medical device companies on their engagement with regulators.  This work has included: providing advice about Australia's medical device classification rules, assisting to prepare submissions to the TGA on a range of issues, including enforcement actions and applications to amend indications and assisting a company to respond to allegations by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency that it was improperly influencing health practitioner's patient care.

Pharmaceutical Pricing Issues:
Greg advices numerous pharmaceutical clients in relation to strategy for and legal issues arising from their dealings with the Pharmaceutical Benefits Division and Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee, bodies responsible for the reimbursement arrangements for pharmaceutical products in Australia. This has included advice about the effects of biosimilarity on the reimbursement of originator pharmaceuticals. 

Anti-corruption and global legal obligations:
Greg has conducted an audit of medical device company's consultancy and other contract arrangements, for the purposes of managing its risk and exposure under the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

Greg has also assisted a pharmaceutical company in relation to allegations that it provided improper benefits to one of its customers. The matter involved conducting an investigation, a subsequent review of the company's contractual templates and assisting with a Medicines Australia Code of Conduct complaint.



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