Mayor takes on major bank in fight for millions
SUNSHINE Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson is in the midst of a legal wrangle with a bank involving his family's assets worth $13.2 million.
According to court documents, Cr Jamieson and his wife, Lorrell, are appealing to the Court of Appeal over a Supreme Court ruling brought down in March.
The ruling, by Justice David Jackson, found that the Westpac bank had been negligent in its advice to Cr Jamieson when he was CEO of APN News and Media, when he was estimated to have assets of $13.2 million.
The Jamiesons were successful in their claim and were awarded damages of $1,085,739, plus costs, but have lodged an appeal, arguing the damages awarded were inadequate.
Westpac has also appealed, arguing it should not be liable and if it was the damages should be less.
The Jamiesons and the bank declined to comment yesterday because the matter was before the court.
The decision is of great interest to the banking and financial services industry giv-en that a Senate inquiry into Commonwealth Bank advisers has recommended a royal commission.
The Jamiesons' lawyer, Travis Schultz, of Stolaw, said the "decision probably won't open any floodgates but it certainly sets a legal precedent".
"Rarely will an individual investor have the fortitude and resources to take on a big bank. It takes great courage to embark upon significant litigation of this type," Mr Schultz said.
Legal costs in the case are expected to run into hundreds of thousands of dollars on each side.
The Supreme Court documents provide a snapshot of Cr Jamieson's wealth before he became Sunshine Coast mayor.
In 2007, the Jamiesons had four properties, shares, options, superannuation and investments. They had liabilities of $6.58 million.
Cr Jamieson's latest register of interest, filed in the council on June 12, details at length his shareholding and controlling interest in 13 different corporations, ranging from entertainment and property to media and mining.
He has land in Toowoomba, the Barossa Valley, Buderim, Maroochydore, Mooloolaba, Hervey Bay and Como, north of Noosa.
WHAT'S HOT ONLINE