Riverina Solar Pty Ltd [2024] NSWSC 480

How much influence do headings have on interpretation?  In 2021, the High Court said the modern approach takes account of headings ‘in much the same way as use is made of extrinsic materials’7

Riverina concerned the impact of the heading to s 600G of the Corporations Act 2001.  Williams J (at [69-70]) said the heading was part of the Act and to be taken into account.  The words of the provision, however, were both wide and unambiguous.  To read down the provision by reason of the heading would ‘impose an unnaturally constricted’ interpretation, as well as reading further words into the provision itself.  iTip – always treat headings with care and caution.

This principle is from Episode 109 of interpretation NOW!


7 Rolfe [2021] HCA 38 [18], Episode 84, Herzfeld & Prince [5.110].