This year has introduced many a “new normal”.   In Australia there has been an increasing move by the Australian Federal Court to embrace references as a means of determining key contentious issues before trial – for example what is the date of insolvency.  This is particularly critical in the course of antecedent transaction proceedings, particularly unfair preferences.

There are both opportunities and challenges for litigants with this approach, but given that it is likely that the Australian Federal Court will continue to embrace referrals as a means to determining critical questions, such as the date of insolvency, we explore the consequences of this in more detail in this alert.