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Danielle A. Funston

Partner
+61.2.9513.2579
Fax +61.2.9513.2399

Ms. Funston focuses on insolvency and financial services litigation. She has been acting for Australia's leading financial institutions for over 10 years, advising on secured and unsecured recoveries and general disputes. She has extensive experience advising corporations, lenders and insolvency practitioners in regards to recoveries, liquidations, corporate restructuring and general corporate transactions and has particular expertise in the area of managed investment schemes.

She advises clients across a wide range of industries, including construction, real estate, aviation and the agricultural industry and has particular experience in the automotive industry having assisted her clients with commercial disputes, PPSR and regulatory issues. Ms. Funston has also been involved in a number of cross border transactions, primarily between the United States and Hong Kong.

Ms. Funston is an experienced litigator, having been involved in a number of complex and sensitive matters and is an advocate for alternative dispute resolution, including mediation and negotiation.

Professional Background

Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Funston worked for a large international law firm in Sydney.

Professional/Civic Activities

  • INSOL International
  • NSW board member of the Australian Restructuring Insolvency & Turnaround Association (ARITA)
  • Professional member of ARITA
  • Committee member of the Women's Insolvency Network Australia (WINA) NSW
  • Member of the Turnaround Management Association (TMA)
  • Member of the Banking & Financial Services Law Association (BFSLA)
  • Guest lecturer at the University of Technology Sydney in insolvency (post and undergraduate services)
  • Law Society of New South Wales member

Speaking Engagements

  • "Practitioners Remuneration", presented at Australian Restructuring Insolvency & Turnaround Association (ARITA) Small-Medium Practice Conference, May 2017
  • "Idylic Solutions Pty Limited (In Liquidation) and Liquidators' Remuneration", presented at ARITA NSW/ACT State Conference, November 2016

Additional Information

Ms. Funston has acted as a mentor for Lawyers Encouraging and Assisting Promising Students (LEAPS) by working through lessons on study skills, ethics and career planning with disadvantaged students.

Ms. Funston also coordinated and led a pro bono legal service at The Wayside Chapel for over seven years.
  • Acting for an automotive client advising on counterparty insolvency issues, attending mediations and advising on a wide range of PPSR and regulatory issues.
  • Acting for the Receivers appointed to airline, Brindabella Airlines, including the negotiation and completion of aircraft sales.
  • Acting for Receivers appointed to various rural properties and mines, operated by companies associated with a well-known Australian mining magnate.
  • Acting for a global investment bank in relation to the restructure of Emeco Holdings Limited and merger with Orionstone and Andy's Earthmovers, including advising in relation to the banks provision of an AUD65 million senior facility and its super senior creditor position in the post-restructure group.
  • Advising one of the big four banks in relation to a restructure of a global commodity trader and acting on a facility variation which successfully reduced the bank's exposure by US$210million.
  • Acting for the liquidator in the successful remuneration decision of Black J in Idylic Solutions Pty Limited (In Liquidation) 2016.
  • Acting on behalf of the liquidators of Trio Capital Limited (in Liquidation) (Trio ), Australia's largest superannuation fraud. Trio was the responsible entity for 25 registered Managed Investment Schemes (MISs) and three unregistered MISs, as well as the trustee of five superannuation funds. Impaired assets contained in the funds were over AUD420 million. The matter received significant press interest as it involved at least AUD120 million of investor funds being dissipated through a series of opaque structures into hedge funds in numerous offshore locations in the Caribbean. Ms Funston assisted the liquidators with recovery actions and investigations to assist the commissioner , fellow regulators at the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority and overseas regulators. The matter involved a number of foreign jurisdictions and legal systems.
  • Acting for liquidators, appointed by ASIC to administer the winding up of numerous unregistered management investment schemes, including the Super Save Superannuation Scheme and the Integrity Plus Unit Trust . The schemes had received over US$ 100 million of investor funds. The liquidation was complex as funds were kept in the accounts of about 800 investors both in Australia and overseas. Ms. Funston assisted the liquidators and continues to advise on various transactions ; apply to the court on various issues relating to the recovery of intermingled funds ; to seek directions on the winding up of the unregistered management investment schemes and to pay distributions to investors under s601EE(2) of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth). Ms. Funston has been successful in recovering assets in foreign jurisdictions, and has been successful in having the liquidators' appointment recognised in the United States, under the Cross Border Insolvency Act.
  • Acting on behalf of the trustees appointed to the bankrupt estate of Eddy Groves, including instructing on public examination and pursuing recovery actions.
  • Acting for the Receivers and Managers appointed over a Melbourne city development, the Chevron development .
  • Acting on behalf of Receivers and Managers appointed over a number of prominent Sydney developments.
  • Acting for the liquidator of Hypec Electronics Pty Limited in a claim to recover approximately AUD8 million of assets. The liquidation involved seven separate court proceedings and raised issues of constructive trusts over real and personal property, the fraud exception of the indefeasibility principle, amounts secured by mortgages  and their enforceability, phoenix company claims against a related company and breach of directors' duties. One proceeding involving the company ran over 70 days in the Family Court of Australia.