Douglas Raftesath


With more than 25 years’ experience assisting clients to resolve disputes, Douglas is often commended by clients for his ability to clearly communicate complex issues.

Prior to joining Meridian Lawyers, Douglas spent 13 years at a large global law firm, including eight years as a partner, where he was able to hone his skills as a litigator.

Douglas has acted in a number of high profile, large scale and complex multi-party disputes in the Federal Court of Australia and the Supreme Court of New South Wales. He has successfully represented over 2000 group members of three failed debenture schemes in large class action litigation. He also successfully pursued the directors of a failed listed telecommunications company in a multi-million dollar claim for insolvent trading.

He has represented multi-national corporations, as well as listed companies and large privately owned companies. His track record includes successfully defending a large multi-national corporation in a multi-million dollar damages claim arising from a fire on board one of the Royal Australian Navy’s ships, which resulted in the death of four sailors and serious damage to the ship.

Douglas has successfully acted for numerous small and medium sized business owners in partnership disputes and disputes arising out of the sale or purchase of small and medium sized businesses. He has acted for pharmacy business owners in pharmacy location disputes and has made successful applications on behalf of pharmacists for Ministerial Discretion.

Douglas works closely with his clients to ensure disputes are managed efficiently and effectively and the real issues in the dispute are identified at an early stage.

He has a record of conducting litigation in a manner that ensures that legal costs are kept to a minimum. In a recent Supreme Court of NSW proceeding the judge commented: “… the rates charged by Meridian Lawyers were less than market rates and that on any view the costs are modest having regard to the complexity of the case..”

Douglas advises on contract risk management strategies and assists clients to develop processes and procedures to minimise the potential for risk and dispute. He also advises on all aspects of Privacy.

Douglas has completed the LEADR course in Alternative Dispute Resolution and assists clients to resolve disputes through various methods of alternative dispute resolution. He also assists clients with their general contract negotiation and administration including drafting general contract documentation and terms and conditions.

Mar 31, 2021

INSIGHT: Dangers in negotiating commercial agreements

Commercial agreements vary in complexity, the length of time parties are involved in negotiations, and importantly, in the level of formality the parties employ as they ‘thrash out’ the terms. For these reasons, it is sometimes difficult to work out when the negotiations have reached a point where the law would regard the parties as […]

Mar 31, 2021

INSIGHT: The importance of an up to date and relevant shareholders’ agreement

A shareholders’ agreement is a contract between a company’s shareholders (sometimes the company itself is also a party), setting out the rights and obligations of the shareholders in relation to the affairs of the company and how it is to be managed. If the company is the trustee of a unit trust the agreement relates […]