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Mark Sheller

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Bachelor of Arts, University of Sydney (1983)

Bachelor of Laws, University of Sydney (1986)


Supreme Court of New South Wales (1986)

High Court of Australia (1991)


Law Society of New South Wales 

For over 30 years, Mark has acted for insured and insurers in a wide variety of liability, indemnity and commercial disputes. 

Areas of Expertise:

  • business interruption claims resolution;

  • contract disputes, both seeking to enforce and set aside contracts; 

  • defamation, for plaintiffs and defendants; 

  • insolvency and debt recovery, for creditors and debtors; 

  • professional negligence; 

  • directors’ duties and corporate governance disputes; 

  • disputes involving competing property interests; 

  • banking and finance;

  • enforcement and avoidance of guarantees, including for unconscionable conduct and under the Contracts Review Act;

  • administrative law, including challenging government decisions on the grounds of lack of procedural fairness; and   

  • health industry, admitted to the MDA National Panel

He has practised extensively in financial lines insurance, particularly insurance for industry superfunds, accountants (including auditors, insolvency specialists and tax agents), lawyers, company directors and officers.

Mark has been involved in many of the leading professional liability and insurance law cases in Australia.

  • The Full Federal Court of Australia in Watkins Syndicate 0457 at Lloyds v Pantaenius Australia Pty Ltd. His expertise in this area stretches across all fields of insurance and beyond Australian shores to the United Kingdom, Scandinavia, United States, Asia and the Pacific.

  • Acted in matters involving nursing home proprietors, doctors and hospitals. In January 2017, Mark was appointed to the MDA National Panel for New South Wales through his close association to the MDA claims team.

  • Works closely with insurance brokers to provide their clients with education, risk management and ‘first point of call’ services.

  • D&O policy wordings and Employment Practices Liability wordings. He has recently finished drafting a cyber wording for a well-known German insurer bringing together German precision and Australian flair.​

The depth and length of Mark’s experience enables him to write extensively and present frequently on a wide variety of liability, risk management and insurance issues.  He has presented papers on these topics throughout Australia, the United States, United Kingdom, India and Singapore.

  • Acted for insureds and their insurers in numerous accountants’ professional indemnity claims, particularly claims turning on audits and the completion of tax returns.  Examples of those cases include the McKechnie Bros litigation, Columbia Coffee and Tea Pty Ltd v Churchill t/as Nelson Parkhill (1992) 29 NSWLR 141 (liability for economic loss) and Smiles v Moon (liability of tax agents).  Other professional industries in which Mark has been involved, include health industry, insurance brokers, quantity surveyors and fund managers.

  • Acted for insureds and their insurers in numerous D&O claims including: The Compass proceedings and Antico v Heath Fielding Australia Pty Ltd (1997) 188 CLR 652. These proceedings not only explored the boundaries of the liability of company directors, the consequent decisions are seminal decisions on Sections 48 and 54 of the Insurance Contracts Act.  Mark’s involvement in cases concerning Section 54 has rendered him a highly sought-after speaker on this topic.

  • Acted in commercial litigation in all jurisdictions including Alexander v Perpetual Trustees WA Ltd [2004] 216 CLR 109 (decision of the High Court of Australia concerning contribution between wrongdoers under Victoria Wrongs Act), Perpetual Trustees Australia Ltd v Heperu Pty Ltd [2009] NSWCA 84 (a decision of the New South Wales Court of Appeal concerning competition between parties affected by third party fraud) and Holt v Cox [1997] NSWSC 144 (a decision of the New South Wales Supreme Court of Appeal regarding share valuations).

  • Acted for various parties in insurance litigation including FAI General Insurance Co Ltd v Perry (1993) 30 NSWLR 89 (Section 54 of the ICA and the failure to notify circumstances), Placer v Dyno [1999] NSWSC 1292 (proper law of an insurance policy and dual insurance), Strategic Property Holdings No3 Pty Ltd v Austbrokers RWA Pty Ltd [2012] NSWSC 1570 (Policy sublimits and negligent broker advice), Watkins Syndicate 0457 at Lloyds v Pantaenius Australia Pty Ltd [2016] FCAFC 150 (section 54 of the ICA and dual insurance) and QBE Underwriting Ltd as managing agent for Lloyd’s Syndicate 386 v Southern Colliery Maintenance Pty Ltd [2018] NSWCA 55 (assumed liability and non-disclosure).

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