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High Court success for Racing NSW and Harness Racing NSW

Authors: Timothy Price

On 30 March 2012, the High Court unanimously decided in favour of Racing NSW and Harness Racing NSW declaring the race fields fees charged to wagering operators – Betfair and Sportsbet – valid. The judgments represent the much anticipated outcome of the challenge by Betfair and Sportsbet to the race fields legislation and fees on the grounds that they impeded interstate trade in breach of section 92 of the Constitution.

The result paved the way for the release of over $100 million in funding for the racing industry in New South Wales and will lead to a long term increase in additional revenue estimated to be $1 billion. The judgments are being closely reviewed by all sporting codes to determine their impact on the ability to raise additional revenue from wagering.

We thank our clients for their support and recognise the achievement of our team including Timothy Price, Philip Clark and Julia Turner.

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