Mr Bruce Whittaker

  • Mr Bruce Whittaker

Senior Fellow

bruce.whittaker@unimelb.edu.au

Overview

Bruce is one of Australia’s leading experts in secured transactions law reform.

Bruce worked for many years as a partner, and more recently as a consultant, in the banking and finance team at law firm Ashurst. Bruce has been recognised for many years as one of Australia’s leading banking and finance lawyers, having acted on transactions both large and small for the country’s leading financial institutions and industrial companies.

Bruce was closely involved in the introduction in Australia of the Personal Property Securities Act in 2009. Subsequently, Bruce advised a wide range of Australian and international financial institutions on how the PPSA applies to their financing products. He has also advised many businesses on how to come to grips with the PPSA and the PPS Register.

In 2014, Bruce was appointed by the Australian Attorney-General to conduct a review into the operation of the PPSA and related legislation, and to make recommendations for change. Bruce delivered his report to Government in early 2015, and it was tabled in Commonwealth Parliament in March that year. Government is in the process of developing its responses to the recommendations in the report.

Since early 2016, Bruce has been the Australian Government’s delegate to Working Group VI of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), dealing with secured transactions law reform initiatives. As part of Working Group VI, Bruce participated in the drafting of UNCITRAL’s Model Law on Secured Transactions (2016) and the accompanying Guide to Enactment (2017). In 2017, Bruce was elected as the chair of Working Group VI, and in that role he is now leading the working group in its current project, the preparation of a Practice Guide for bankers, businesspeople and lawyers in jurisdictions that enact the Model Law.

Bruce is also President of the Banking and Financial Services Law Association, the peak industry organisation for banking and finance lawyers in Australia and New Zealand.