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Rob joined Wallmans Lawyers in 2014 and leads the firm's Commercial Practice Group.
Rob specialises in the financial services sector and all legal aspects affecting their operations, acting for banks, credit unions, building societies and private health insurers throughout Australia. He was Head of Compliance for Credit Union Services Corporation (Cuscal) and involved in government liaison on regulatory reform and managed the mutual sector implementation of all major legislative changes affecting the financial services sector in Australia from 1992 until 2004 before returning to private practice. He has also served on various government and payments system committees.
Rob has an extensive background in the prudential supervision of Australian Deposit Taking Institutions (ADIs), transfers of business, outsourcing contracts, securitisation, winding up ADIs, demutualisation and takeovers, governance, compliance systems and financial product design. 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 voluntary winding-up of an Australian ADI and advised on two hostile ADI takeover/demutualisation bids. His expertise in financial services regulation and compliance is recognised throughout Australia.
Board advisory and governance work is a large part of Rob's practice, extending to Constitutional change, takeover protection strategies and documentation, Board policies and charters and director training on the regulation of corporations and financial services in Australia. For many years he was the editor/author of the standard mutual ADI director compliance manual covering, amongst other things, the prudential supervision of ADIs in Australia. As a result of his expertise, Rob has been recognised in the Best Lawyers Australia listing (Commercial Law) as well as in Doyles Guide of Leading Banking and Finance Lawyers (SA).
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. Of recent times the aftermath of the Financial Services Royal Commission has created a growing raft of additional regulatory impost for Rob to assist our clients to assimilate. In recent times, Rob has also assisted in the private health insurance sector on the implementation of their prudential regulatory 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
Areas of Practice
Honours & Awards
- Rob Surman | 2023/24 Best Lawyers Australia Listing - Commercial Law
- Rob Surman | 2022/23 Best Lawyers Australia Listing - Commercial Law
- Rob Surman | 2021/22 Best Lawyers Australia Listing - Commercial Law
- Leading Banking & Finance Law Firms - South Australia - 2021 Doyles Guide
- Rob Surman | Doyles Guide - Leading Banking and Finance Lawyer 2021 (SA)
- Rob Surman | Doyles Guide - Leading Banking and Finance Lawyer 2016 (SA)
- Rob Surman | Doyles Guide - Leading Banking and Finance Lawyer 2015 (SA)
- Privacy considerations for your workplace: Collecting personal information regarding COVID-19
- Insights Paper | COVID-19 Bulletin 1 – Can you cancel your contract?
- Paper | Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Act - Update for Financial Services
- Paper | The Modern Slavery Act Requirements for Business
- Trade Marks | Protecting Your Business’ Brand Identity in the Food and Wine Industry
- Progress for Building Upgrade Agreements in South Australia
- PPSA win for SMEs