Rob Surman Wallmans Lawyers Adelaide

Rob Surman


Rob joined Wallmans Lawyers in 2014 and leads the firm's Financial Services practice.

Rob acts for banks, credit unions, building societies and private health insurers throughout Australia. He has specialised in financial services and corporate advisory work associated with the financial services sector for over 25 years. Rob joins Wallmans from a specialist Banking and Finance legal firm. He also has private practice experience in banking and finance as former Head of Compliance for Credit Union Services Corporation (CUSCAL) and has served on various government committees. His expertise in Banking and Finance has been recognised in Doyles Guide to leading Banking and Finance Lawyers.

Rob has an extensive background in the prudential supervision of Australian Deposit Taking Institutions (ADIs), State and Commonwealth taxation, transfers of business, outsourcing, securitisation, winding up ADIs, demutualisation and takeovers and governance. He is a specialist in the merger of ADIs, having directed, or advised on, many of the ADI mergers that have occurred in Australia. He successfully completed the last voluntary winding-up of an Australian ADI and advised on two hostile ADI takeover/demutualisation bids.

Board advisory and governance work is a large part of Rob's practice, extending to takeover protection strategies and documentation, Board policies and charters and director training on financial services regulation in Australia. For many years he was the editor/author of the standard mutual ADI director compliance manual issued by the Australasian Mutuals Institute covering, amongst other things, the prudential supervision of ADIs in Australia.

His expertise in financial services regulation and compliance is recognised throughout Australia. At CUSCAL (now Customer Owned Banking Association) he was involved in government liaison and lobbying and managed the mutual sector implementation of all major legislative changes affecting the financial services sector in Australia from 1992 until 2004. Rob worked on the Wallis Inquiry inputs for the Mutual ADI sector and the national implementation of conversion of corporate and prudential regulation to the Corporations Act and the Banking Act. In recent times, Rob has assisted entities in the private health insurance sector on transition to a similar prudential regime.

Memberships / associations

  • The Law Society of South Australia.
  • Financial Services Committee, Business Law Section, Law Council of Australia
  • Australasian Compliance Institute
  • Australasian Mutuals Institute