Recent decisions

The following Written Reasons for Decisions have been handed down this week. Links to the full text of the Decisions at the AustLII website are provided.

This page is updated each weekday and is current to 22 April 2015.

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Digiglio and Transpacific Industries Pty Ltd [2015] AATA 226; 15/4/2015; Senior Member GD Friedman

COMPENSATION – left shoulder, hips, lower back and groin injuries – whether significant contribution by employment – previous injury in 1998 – whether contribution by events that occurred prior to respondent becoming licensee on 1 July 2008


Hand and Comcare [2015] AATA 238; 21/4/2015; Senior Member E Fice

Particular injuries, diseases and disabilities – Mental and nervous disorders – Entitlement to compensation – Exclusions – Stress injuries resulting from reasonable administrative action by employer – Decision under review affirmed


Hunter and Telstra Corporation Limited [2015] AATA 218; 13/4/2015; Deputy President IR Molloy

Commonwealth employees – Whether injury a result of reasonable administrative action – Major depressive disorder – Where multiple contributing factors – Decision under review set aside and Tribunal decision substituted


Huynh and Australian Postal Corporation [2015] AATA 235; 17/4/2015; Senior Member J Handley

Applicant diagnosed with plantar fasciitis – worked more than 20 years standing and walking on concrete floors – plantar fasciitis idiopathic , pre-existing and a  non-compensable ailment – bilateral chronic pain experienced – no change in the pathology of the condition – applicant vulnerable to pain by the employment activities – no relevant distinction between aggravation or exacerbation – pain part of the disease – contribution to a significant degree by the employment – decisions set aside.


Parr and Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Commission [2015] AATA 239; 22/4/2015; Dr M Denovan, Member

Entitlements – Dependants – Eligible Young Person Payment – Whether dependant was an “eligible young person” at the time the veteran became eligible for 80 impairment points – Dependant no longer an “eligible young person” at the time of veteran’s eligibility – Decision under review affirmed


Singer and Comcare [2015] AATA 231; 17/4/2015; Senior Member Isenberg

Workers compensation incapacity payments – whether the average weekly earnings and normal weekly earnings were correctly calculated – whether there has been any underpayment of compensation payments – decision affirmed

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Brand Developers Aust Pty Ltd and Chief Executive Officer of Customs [2015] AATA 215; 10/4/2015; Deputy President SA Forgie

Whether eligible for concessional rate – whether description of TCO to be met precisely – whether goods may have additional features outside the description of the TCO – precise description of TCO to be met – “Y-shaped” vegetable peeler and lid each takes goods outside of description of TCO but booklet and packaging do not – decision affirmed

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Elhelwe and Australian Community Pharmacy Authority & Ors [2015] AATA 219; 14/4/2015; Deputy President JW Constance

Pharmacists – application to supply pharmaceutical benefits from particular premises – small shopping centre – whether supermarket with gross leasable area of 2,500 square metres – construction of supermarket – meaning of market – decision affirmed

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Immigration and Citizenship

Rana and Minister for Immigration and Border Protection [2015] AATA 227; 16/4/2015; Senior Member P Taylor

Application for Australian citizenship – whether Applicant of good character – nature of good character – Applicant convicted of offences involving dishonesty – consideration of sentencing judge's remarks – supporting witnesses unaware of circumstances of convictions – decision affirmed.

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Practice and Procedure

ATP Group Pty Ltd and Tax Practitioners Board [2015] AATA 225; 16/3/2015; Deputy President R Deutsch

Stay – operation of a decision to cancel registration as tax agent – public interest – reputational damage – prospects of success – stay granted

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Social Security

Clarke and Secretary, Department of Social Services [2015] AATA 165; 20/3/2015; Senior Member JF Toohey

Disability support pension – compensation affected payment – preclusion period – whether preclusion period correctly calculated – whether special circumstances – decision under review set aside


Elbehidi and Secretary, Department of Employment [2015] AATA 228; 24/3/2015; Senior Member RW Dunne

Pensions, benefits and allowances – application for newstart allowance – applicant’s business not making a profit and he is in financial difficulty – whether applicant was "unemployed" – whether self-employed – self-employment was not “very short term” or “sporadic” – discretion available to treat applicant as being unemployed for newstart allowance – discretion not exercised – decision under review affirmed


Koden and Secretary, Department of Social Services [2015] AATA 236; 20/4/2015; Mr C Ermert, Member

Disability support pension – whether the Applicant’s impairment attracts 20 points – decision affirmed


Lloyd and Secretary, Department of Social Services [2015] AATA 214; 10/4/2015; Prof R McCallum AO, Member

SOCIAL SECURITY – pensions – disability support pension – whether Applicant’s conditions were fully diagnosed, treated and stabilised – whether Applicant’s impairment rated 20 points or more under the Impairment Tables – decision under review affirmed


Loughman and Secretary, Department of Social Services [2015] AATA 220; 14/4/2015; Deputy President JW Constance

Disability support pension – whether impairments fully diagnosed, treated and stabilised – whether impairments could be rated twenty or more impairment points – decision affirmed


Mirza and Secretary, Department of Social Services [2015] AATA 223; 14/4/2015; Professor R McCallum AO, Member

SOCIAL SECURITY – disability support pension – whether applicant’s impairments are rated 20 points or more under the Impairment Tables – thirteen week qualification period – decision affirmed

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McDonald and Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation [2015] AATA 237; 21/4/2015; Dr J Popple, Senior Member

Defence Force Retirement and Death Benefits Scheme – member resumed continuous full time service – whether member made an election to remain in DFRDB scheme – requirements to make election – member completed form and took steps to have form sent to ComSuper – decision set aside and substituted.


Veterans' Affairs

Bergin and Repatriation Commission [2015] AATA 224; 15/4/2015; Senior Member N Isenberg

VETERANS' AFFAIRS – Widow's pension – whether Applicant and veteran in de facto relationship – no joint financial interests – some sharing of household responsibilities – lived together and had sexual relationship – conducted themselves as couple – veteran did not hold himself out as de facto – mixed reaction of family and friends – no de facto relationship – decision under review affirmed


Kermode and Repatriation Commission [2015] AATA 234; 17/4/2015; Senior Member NA Manetta

Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986 – preliminary question concerning date of payment of benefit - previous claims - no power to backdate pension to date of earlier finally determined claim


Schmidt and Repatriation Commission [2015] AATA 229; 17/4/2015; Senior Member N Isenberg

Entitlements – Anxiety disorder – Alcohol dependence – Whether veteran’s condition was war-caused – Decision under review affirmed

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