Michael Chaaya

Partner. Sydney.

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Michael Chaaya

Michael Chaaya is known for his commerciality and being at the forefront of financial services reform and regulation.

Specialising in superannuation and pensions, general and life insurance, funds management, financial services reform and regulation, Michael provides regulatory and commercial advice to Australia’s leading financial services entities.

He is the chair of the Corrs Financial Services Industry Division Leadership Team and leads the financial services regulatory practice at Corrs.

On behalf of his clients he works closely with key regulators including the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, and the Australian Taxation Office.

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Michael Chaaya is known for his commerciality and being at the forefront of financial services reform and regulation.

Specialising in superannuation and pensions, general and life insurance, funds management, financial services reform and regulation, Michael provides regulatory and commercial advice to Australia’s leading financial services entities.

He is the chair of the Corrs Financial Services Industry Division Leadership Team and leads the financial services regulatory practice at Corrs.

On behalf of his clients he works closely with key regulators including the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, and the Australian Taxation Office.

Having gained valuable client-side experience on secondments as in-house Legal Counsel at AMP, MLC/National Australia Bank and BT Financial Group, Michael has genuine insight into his clients’ needs.

Michael has published widely on financial services issues and is a regular speaker at industry conferences in Australia and abroad. He is a Senior Fellow at the University of Melbourne Law School and lectures in the postgraduate program. 

With a strong involvement in the community, access to justice and pro bono activities, Michael was a finalist for the Law and Justice Foundation of NSW Justice Medal in 2007 and was awarded the Australian Centenary medal for service to the law, youth and community in 2003.

“Technically excellent, responsive, approachable and able to deliver on commitments” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide
Michael Chaaya

Michael's Expertise

  • Middle Eastern Sovereign Wealth Fund Advised a Middle Eastern Sovereign Wealth Fund on a proposed investment in a managed investment scheme and associated regulatory issues.
  • Asset Super Advised the trustee board and management of Asset Super on the merger between Asset Super and CareSuper to create a fund with over $6.5 billion of assets under management.
  • Australia Post Advised Australia Post on various regulatory obligations in its capacity as the principal employer sponsor of the Australia Post Superannuation Scheme.
  • Foreign Investment Review Board and Financial Sector Shareholdings Act approval Advised a company incorporated in the USA on a proposal to invest in an Australian financial services entity and regulatory implications under FIRB and the FSSA.
  • Insurance operations in Australia Advised a multinational insurance company on all aspects of the establishment of its insurance and reinsurance operations in Australia and liaising with APRA about the authorisation proposal.
  • AXA Asia Pacific and AMP Advised AXA and AMP on several projects aimed at improving its competitiveness, including product innovations and responses to changes in their operating environment through legislative and regulatory changes.

Michael's Thinking

  • Mortgage Fraud: ASIC gets tough on brokers 20 July 2017
    ASIC won’t be able to bear the burden of tackling mortgage fraud alone.
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  • Regulatory Reform Agenda: What does it mean for the banks? 5 April 2017
    What does the current regulatory reform agenda mean for banks and financial institutions?
    More
  • AUSTRAC Insights: Common failures in anti-money-laundering and counter-terrorism financing programs 5 April 2017
    All reporting entities should be reviewing their AML/CTF programs to ensure the errors and failings highlighted by AUSTRAC are not occurring in their business.
    More
  • Halsbury's Laws of Australia, 120 - Corporations Chapter Financial Services and Markets, 2016
  • "2010 Federal Budget & the Henry Tax Review” (June 2010) Australian Banking & Finance Law Bulletin
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  • "The future of financial advice - Beyond Ripoll” (May 2010) Australian Superannuation Law Bulletin
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  • "The Pace of Superannuation Reform Continues - A Brief Stocktake of Key '08 Initiatives" (June 2009) Journal of Financial Advice
  • "Superannuation reform in Australia” (March 2009) Trust Law International
  • International Pensions & Employee Benefits Lawyers Association 13th Conference, Berlin (23 May 2011) Speaker: “The Regulation of Trustee Governance in Australia - Time For a Rethink?”
  • Conference of Major Super Funds, Gold Coast (28 March 2011) Speaker: “Trustee duties and legal responsibilities update”
  • Law Council of Australia Superannuation Lawyers Conference, Gold Coast (19 February 2011) Speaker: “Contemporary Challenges for In-house Counsel in the Super Space”
  • Financial Services Council Annual Conference, Melbourne (12 August 2010) Speaker: “Cooper Review: A New Dawn for Trustee Governance”
  • Conference of Major Superannuation Fund, Brisbane (16 March 2010) Speaker: “Superannuation Governance - Time for Redesign”
  • The Law of Superannuation in Australia, co-authored with Noel Davis LexisNexis Looseleaf Service, 2013
  • Halsbury's Laws of Australia, 120 - Corporations Chapter Financial Services and Markets, 2012
  • Stronger Super reforms - A kaleidoscope of change awaits the industry Australian Superannuation Law Bulletin, October 2011
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  • Unfinished business - The superannuation reforms agenda continues Australian Superannuation Law Bulletin, April 2012
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  • Super reform - Enhanced duties and prudential standards have arrived Keeping Good Companies, October 2012
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  • Personal liability - Expanding the director penalty regime Keeping Good Companies, August 2012
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  • Financial System Inquiry - Interim Report presents viable options to improve consumer outcomes Financial Services Newsletter, August 2014
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  • All Michael's Thinking Articles »

What others say

  • “Best Lawyer - Financial Institutions, Funds Management, Regulatory Practice and Superannuation Law” Best Lawyers Peer Review, 2014-2018
  • “Deep industry knowledge and commercial insight ... technical brilliance ...
    highly professional, commercially savvy and impeccable in every domain of his legal practice”
    Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2016
  • “Leading Lawyer – Investment Funds” AsiaLaw Leading Lawyers 2015–2016
  • “Financial Services Regulatory Law Firm of the Year in Australia – 2016” Global Law Experts (GLE)
  • “Corrs draws on its 'excellent industry knowledge' to provide 'advice that is well structured and to the point'. Superannuation and pensions specialist Michael Chaaya 'impresses with his responsiveness and approachable manner'.” Asia Pacific Legal 500, 2015
  • “Michael is technically excellent, responsive, approachable and able to deliver on commitments” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2015
  • “An incredibly helpful and practical lawyer” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2015
  • “Leading Lawyer - Investment Funds, FSR and Superannuation” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2013-2015
  • “Leading Lawyer - Financial Services Regulation” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2012-2015
  • “The 'outstanding' Michael Chaaya is recommended” Asia Pacific Legal 500, 2014
  • “He has excellent knowledge of superannuation and trust law as well as all associated legislation. He is a client-focused adviser who delivers advice in a pragmatic manner. He is a valued contributor to the industry and his knowledge is well respected.” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2014
  • “Clearly an expert in his field” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2014
  • “Provides ‘cutting edge advice’ on regulatory matters” Asia Pacific Legal 500, 2012/13
  • “Highly experienced in advising on financial services regulation across a range of products, including insurance, superannuation/pensions and investment funds.” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2013
  • “Singled out by sources for being very knowledgeable and having an approachable manner” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2013

Michael's Leadership

  • Law Society of New South Wales Member
  • Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees Member
  • Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia Member
  • ASFA Risk, Legal and Compliance Standing Advisory Panel Member
  • Financial Services Council Member
  • National Children's & Youth Law Centre Director
  • Australian Museum Foundation Director
  • Federal Government’s Tax Design Advisory Panel Member
  • University of Melbourne Law School Senior Fellow
  • International Pensions and Employment Benefits Lawyers Association Member
  • APRA Superannuation Lawyers Liaison Forum Member
  • Australian Superannuation Law Bulletin Editorial Panel Member