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The Australian National University

The Proceduralisation of Australian Corporate Law?

Ross Grantham (2015) 43 (2)

The central hypothesis of the paper is that bit by bit and largely unnoticed Australian corporate law has undergone a profound change. Australian corporate law, and particularly the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth), has moved from an essentially private law, substantive rights model, to one that seeks to regulate the company and those involved in its affairs through the prescription of processes and procedures by which corporate decisions may be made and by which the procedural correctness of those decisions is assured. The paper will also seek to demonstrate, by an analysis of the changes in the patterns of corporate case law, that this proceduralising trend has effected a fundamental change in the nature of corporate law and the role of the courts and may now claim to be a, if not, the principal characteristic of Australian corporate law. The paper concludes by highlighting some of the wider implications of this trend and the risk it poses to the intellectual heart of corporate law.

Vol 43, Issue 2, 2015

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