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Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 1303 asked in the Legislative Council on 5 December 2018 by Hon Michael Mischin

Parliament: 40 Session: 1

Answered on 5 December 2018

INSURANCE COMMISSION OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA — BELL GROUP LIQUIDATIONS

1303. Hon MICHAEL MISCHIN to the minister representing the Treasurer:

I refer to the Insurance Commission of Western Australia's engagement of legal practitioner Jonathon Carson to ''support the Insurance Commission in its endeavours to seek an end to the Bell Group liquidations''.

(1) What precisely are his brief and terms of engagement?

(2) How did that appointment come about, and who made the decision to engage him and when?

(3) What is his remuneration package?

(4) What is the legal work, advice or assistance for which he has been engaged by the commission?

(5) Was the minister consulted about the appointment; and, if so, when and by whom?

(6) What is the relationship between the role of Mr Carson and that of Mr Wayne Martin, QC?

(7) By what criteria will their performance and entitlement to remuneration be measured?

Hon STEPHEN DAWSON replied:

I thank the honourable member for some notice of the question.

(1) To assist the Insurance Commission to pursue its interests in the Bell Group liquidations, Mr Carson has been engaged by the Insurance Commission as a litigation adviser to provide legal and advisory services in respect of the conduct and resolution of the Bell litigation.

(2) The Insurance Commission approached a number of senior lawyers to assist the Insurance Commission to deal with Bell Group–related matters. The process to approach and interview the senior lawyers commenced in July 2018 and concluded with the engagement of Mr Martin and Mr Carson on 29 October 2018.

(3) The Insurance Commission expects Mr Carson to work for two and a half to four days per week for two years at $450 an hour, exclusive of GST.

(4) Mr Carson has been engaged by the Insurance Commission as a litigation adviser to provide legal and advisory services in respect of the conduct of, and resolution of, the Bell litigation.

(5) The Insurance Commission advised the minister—the Treasurer—about the appointment in a briefing note on 13 November 2018.

(6) Mr Carson and Mr Martin work cooperatively with each other to provide strategic advice to the Insurance Commission.

(7) Each consultant will provide advice to the chairperson, chief executive and the board of the Insurance Commission as required. Remuneration will be payable in consideration of the due and proper performance of the consultants' obligations.