Laura Keily is a specialist in corporations and financial services law as well as complex commercial litigation.
Laura has over a decade of experience as a blue chip corporate advisor in Melbourne (Blake Dawson Waldron, Corrs Chambers Westgarth) and London (Slaughter and May). She has negotiated many high value and cross-border acquisitions, takeovers and schemes of arrangement. Laura is also an experienced general counsel, company director and trustee.
Laura is a bold advocate whose breadth of experience, combined with her expert knowledge of corporate law, places her in a unique position to maximise outcomes for clients. She is often called upon to represent companies, directors and government in cases involving corporate law and finance issues, regulatory dealings with ASIC, insolvency and bankruptcy scenarios, and disputes arising from commercial transactions.
Laura regularly appears both led and unled in the Federal and Supreme Courts and has conducted a number of complex commercial trials as solo counsel. Laura led a team in the Victorian Court of Appeal and applied to the High Court for Special Leave (unled). Laura has acted both for and against ASIC and the ATO, acting for ASIC in the Federal Court and for the ATO in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal and Supreme Court. Laura has acted for a number of financial service providers in actions by ASIC and in the Royal Commission into Financial Services.
Laura's technical expertise has been recognised in her appointments to the Law Council of Australia’s Corporations and Competition and Consumer Committees. Laura has recently authored Chapters 6, 6A and 6B of the Thomson Reuters Robson's Annotated Corporations Act regarding takeovers and compulsory acquisitions.
Laura holds three first class degrees: Masters of Commercial Law, Bachelor of Laws (Hons), and Bachelor of Science (in Chemistry and Physics). Laura has also completed the AICD Company Directors Course and is currently completing her second masters degree at the University of Melbourne, being a Master of Taxation.
Further information is available at www.laurakeily.com.au.
Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards legislation
- Admiralty & Maritime
- Banking & Finance
- Building & Construction
- Class Actions
- Commercial Arbitration
- Consumer Law
- Contractual Disputes
- Corporate Insolvency
- Corporations & Securities
- Energy & Resources
- Equity & Trusts
- Private International Law
- Real Property
- Residential & Retail Tenancies
- Class Actions
- Commissions & Inquiries
- Professional Negligence
- Judicial Review
- White Collar Crime
Masters of Commercial Law (Melb)
Bachelor of Laws (Hons)
Bachelor of Science
AICD Company Directors Course
State and Territory Courts and Tribunals
Federal Court of Australia
High Court of Australia
Led a pro bono appeal against the State of Victoria: Mary Pateras v State of Victoria  VSCA 31.
Currently advising Adley Burstyner on the proposed class action by dairy farmers regarding the “farm gate milk price”.
Flexible Drive Pty Ltd v Hocking and others (Supreme Court of Victoria, Commercial List, 2015-2016): Successfully settled a claim for breach of directors’ duties against a group of former directors (un-led).
Representing at the Financial Services Commission an AFSL holder the subject of a case study regarding alleged breaches of the Corporations Act.
Morris Finance Limited v CBA and others  VSC 260: Appearing in the Supreme Court of Victoria on behalf of a creditor in a contentious bankruptcy priorities dispute (un-led).
In the Matter of Midland Highway Pty Ltd (Administrators Appointed)  FCA 1360): Defending an urgent application bought by ASIC in the Federal Court to set aside a proposed deed of company arrangement (with Leslie Glick QC).
In the Matter of Planet Platinum Ltd (Provisional Liquidator Appointed) (December 2015): Appearing in the Federal Court to obtain an unprecedented injunction on behalf of a creditor to restrain a liquidator from selling property of a suspended ASX entity (with Lachlan Armstrong QC).
Successfully defended the State of Victoria from a claim by a liquidator for reversal of an alleged preference payment (2014).
In the Matter of Planet Platinum Ltd (Provisional Liquidator Appointed) (December 2015): Proposing an alternative sale by scheme of arrangement, including drafting the relevant scheme documentation (with Lachlan Armstrong QC).
In the matter of Crowe Horwath Australasia Pty Ltd (Supreme Court of Victoria, 18 December 2014): Acting for a target in an acquisition by scheme or arrangement (with Norman O'Bryan SC). Appeared without her leader in the Supreme Court of Victoria.
Advising ASIC (August 2015) in relation to the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services Inquiry into the Impairment of Customer Loans (with Ian Waller QC).
Deputy Commissioner of Taxation v Arbelo County Court (CI-16-00632) (2017): Successfully brought a summary judgment applicaiton on behalf of the Commissioner in the County Court; currently conducting AAT proceedings (un-led).
Advising a company regarding a review by AusIndustry of the activities registered by the company for the R&D Tax Incentive under Division 355 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 and assisting Pricewaterhouse Coopers with a response to AusIndustry (November 2015).
Advising the State of Victoria (including the Department of Treasury and Finance, Minister for Housing and the Housing Registrar) on various matters of statutory interpretation and regulatory power (2015).
John Koutsovalsis v TY Holdings Pty Ltd, White Way Nominees Pty Ltd, QBE Insurance (Aust) Pty Ltd; TAG Insurance Brokers; James Taylor County Court, Common Law Division (CI-13-06371) (2017): currently acting for the insurerance brokers in a protracted multi-party personal injuries claim.
Orica Australia Pty Ltd v Semal Pty Ltd & Another CI-14-04220 (2016): succesfully settled an insurance claim for a chemical spill against a transportation company.
Advised a life insurance company on a reinsurance dispute (2015).
Rocca v Timetrex Pty Ltd (VCAT) 2017: Successfully brought application for Tribunal to be reconstituted  VCAT 1858; currently conducting a complex property dispute (un-led).
Landmark Building Services Pty Ltd v Tsekouras & Others  VCC 501: Defended a claim for payment under the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act 2002.
Zhang v Lim (County Court of Victoria, 2015-2016): Brought a claim against a vendor and vendor’s agent in relation to breaches of the Sale of Land Act and other property law issues.
Appeal from Price v Goodrem (Building and Property)  VCAT 1409: conducted a leave to appeal application in the Supreme Court of Victoria in relation to an error of law arising in a building case heard at VCAT (un-led).
Consumer Affairs Victoria v Accrue Property Pty Ltd (2015): Successfully settled (by enforceable undertaking) a case of misleading and deceptive conduct alleged by Consumer Affairs Victoria under the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Act 2012 against a company and its director, including negotiating directly with the General Counsel of Consumer Affairs Victoria to achieve that outcome (un-led).
Earglow Pty Limited v Newcrest Mining Limited (2016): Appearing in the Federal Court on behalf of an expert witness in the class action (un-led).
McGlashen v Bendigo Freighters (2014-2015): Conducted a full commercial trial defending a freighting company from allegations of breach of a shareholders agreement, inducing breach of contract, and breach of a restraint of trade clause. Successfully obtained an award of indemnity costs against the plaintiff (un-led).
ABL Nominees Pty Ltd v Clancy (August 2015): Appearing in the Supreme Court of Victoria to oppose an application to amend a costs order made in the Supreme Court (un-led).
Emmanuel v Kalcic (County Court of Victoria, 25 and 26 May 2015): Appearing un-led in relation to an urgent adjournment of trial application on ‘interests of justice’ grounds; matter settled before trial.
In the matter of Mitrakas v Norton Rose (Supreme Court of Victoria, Costs Court, 4 February 2015): Appearing un-led in relation to a preliminary hearing regarding the Applicant’s standing.
Victorian Bar - Commercial Bar Association
Victorian Bar - Tax Bar Association
The Tax Institute
Law Council of Australia - Corporations Committee
Law Council of Australia - Competition and Consumer Committee
Women's Bar Association - Committee Member
Association of Corporate Counsel
Women in Insolvency and Restructuring Victoria
Women in Insurance
Victorian Women Lawyers
National Association of Women in Construction
Bottled Snail Productions