Dear valued clients, colleagues and friends,
We are pleased to bring you the September 2021 issue of our quarterly Newsletter, we hope that you will continue to find its contents of value to you.
In this issue’s Front Page Focus, Caitlin Tan Hui Yi, associate from our Dispute Resolution Practice Group, discusses the disqualification of solicitors in the Court of Appeal case of Dato’ Azizan bin Abdul Rahman v Pinerains Sdn Bhd.
Disqualification of Solicitors
When would an advocate and solicitor should not act? Specifically, when one has once acted as solicitor or counsel for a client in a previous engagement, can he or she later act for an adverse party in a case somewhat related to the matters advised or acted for in the previous retainer? This would normally involve balancing the ethical questions of conflict of interests and the right of a litigant to his or her choice of solicitors or counsel.
Tax & Revenue
Landmark Decision on Personal Data Protection in Malaysia
In a landmark decision, the High Court of Malaya at Kuala Lumpur declared that the Director General of Inland Revenue (“DGIR”) cannot use the provisions of the Income Tax Act 1967 (“ITA”) to override the protections offered under the Personal Data Protection Act 2010 (“PDPA”) to undertake a fishing expedition for the personal data of customers held by a company running a business as a data user. This matter was handled by Anand Raj, Irene Yong, Foong Pui Chi, Abhilaash Subramaniam and Yeoh Yu Xian of Shearn Delamore & Co’s Tax & Revenue Practice Group.
PT Tunas Duta Cemerlang v Mohd Hafizuddin Hiew bin Abdullah  MLJU 1547
On 27 December 2019, the new Trademarks Act 2019 (“TMA 2019”) came into effect in Malaysia, repealing the Trade Marks Act 1976 (“TMA 1976”). The coming into force of the TMA 2019 has given rise to several procedural issues.
Incoming Game Changer in the Merger and Acquisition Space?
According to a recent news report, the Malaysian Competition Commission (“MyCC”) has initiated the process to amend the Competition Act 2010 (“CA”) to incorporate merger controls in Malaysia. The introduction of a merger control regime in Malaysia, which is expected to be by the end of 2021, may allow the MyCC to review a proposed merger and acquisition (“M&A”) transaction and determine whether the same will have any significant anti-competitive effects.
Employment & Administrative Law
Implementation of New Workplace Policies following the COVID-19 Pandemic
As parts of the world are gradually easing their lockdown restrictions and vaccinations are being rolled out, many employers are beginning to prepare for strategies to bring employees back to the office. Whilst many are eager to return to normalcy, it is undeniable that the post-pandemic workplace will never be the same. Considering that we are still in the early phases of recovery and vaccine efficacies are still being observed, one of the main concerns that employers would have are strategies to create a safe working environment for their employees. This would lead directly to the burning question of whether employers can unilaterally impose new workplace policies, especially on its existing employees.
Stamp Duty Exemptions on Purchase and Financing of Residential Properties
In conjunction with the Malaysian Government’s effort to address the economic challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Malaysian Government has introduced various stamp duty exemptions to encourage more take-up in properties and stimulate the property market.