Key Points: NSW's class action laws will be based on the Federal and Victorian regimes, but with some unique features.

The NSW Attorney-General John Hatzistergos has announced that the state will be reforming its class action laws to bring it into line with the Federal and Victorian regimes.

Although the details of the changes are not yet public, it is known that the reforms will also include recommendations in the Victorian Law Reform Commission’s 2008 Civil Justice Review and the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department’s 2009 Access to Justice Report.

This will include giving the Supreme Court the power to order that unclaimed damages from a successful class action be distributed to a charity of public interest beneficiary when it is not possible to locate all class members.

We'll be following this and will analyse the proposed reforms when we see a draft bill, which is expected to be released later this year, along with a discussion paper.