Types of Gifts in Your will

Types of Gifts in Your Will

Types of Gifts In Your Will – What You Need to Know by Jacqui Brauman What do you mean, there’s different types of gifts I can leave in my Will? Warning: this blog might get a bit dense. I’m not talking about leaving money or leaving your stuff. I’m talking about the way you leave […]

Estoppel and Wills

by Jacqui Brauman Part IV of the Administration and Probate Act is the primary means to bring a claim against a Will in Victoria – that is, a family provision claim, or testator’s family maintenance claim. Such a claim is that a family member who the deceased person had an obligation to provide for has […]

New Powers of Attorney

by Jacqui Brauman The new Victorian Power of Attorney Act is due to start on 1 September 2015. It doesn’t make any changes to the Enduring Power of Attorney (Medical Treatment), but it will change the other two enduring powers: Enduring Power of Attorney (Financial) and Enduring Guardianship. Don’t worry if you have these documents […]

What Happens to My iTunes Account When I Die?

by Jacqui Brauman Accounts like iTunes and other services where you can buy music, movies, ebooks and TV shows are usually licensed services. These are not like an online service where you save you own material, like Dropbox or Instagram. Instead, when you use a service like iTunes you enter a service agreement with them […]

Planning Your Exit Strategy

by Jacqui Brauman Your exit strategy is your succession plan from your small business. For each small business, their succession plan could look different. It could involve, depending on the level of planning: outright sale of the business to a third party transfer of management to family members, along with some form of ownership control […]

Stamp Duty on Land Transfers

Stamp Duty on Land Transfers All transfers of land, including gifts, attract stamp duty. Stamp duty is calculated on the greater of the price paid (consideration) or the market value. Water entitlements sold with land are non-dutiable, so stamp duty does not apply to water. There are exemptions and concessions on the payment of stamp […]

Why Do I Need a Will?

Why Do I Need a Will? If you die without making a Will (intestate), you don’t have any say about how your estate is distributed. Here are a few examples of what could happen: Wife and 2 young kids Tom falls of his ladder whilst cleaning out the gutter. He has life insurance that is […]

Am I in a de facto relationship?

Am I in a de facto relationship? Am I in a de facto relationship?: The two year rule for Family Law, though many of these factors also apply to proving a de facto relationship between someone who has died and their surviving partner. Contact us to arrange a chat. It doesn’t hurt to ask.

Kilmore Bypass and Compulsory Acquisition

Kilmore Bypass and Compulsory Acquisition The Victorian government has the power to compulsorily acquire land that it requires. You can’t prevent them from doing it; so what is the process and what can you get out of it? (More FREE Information). After VicRoads has reserved the land under a planning instrument with the approval of […]

Enduring Guardian

Enduring Guardian Note: the law has changed since 1 September 2015 There are two certainties in life, death and taxes but unfortunately we do not have a crystal ball to predict whether we will suffer dementia eg Alzheimer’s, or simply lose the capacity to look after ourselves. Appointing a Guardian can provide you with peace […]

What is a Testamentary Discretionary Trust?

What is a Testamentary Discretionary Trust? by Jacqueline Brauman. A Testamentary Discretionary Trust (TDT) operates very similarly to a Family Discretionary Trust, except it is set up in your Will and begins after you die. It has a trustee and two or more potential beneficiaries, such as your children, who are entitled to receive the […]

Vendor Finance – Buy Without A Bank

Vendor Finance – Buy Without A Bank What is it and why use it? If you want to buy real estate or a business and you cannot get a loan for the full amount through a bank, you would approach the vendor to finance part or all of the purchaser. So long as the vendor […]

Agisted Stock: Ownership Risk

Agisted Stock: Ownership Risk by Jacqui Brauman A recent local case has brought to my attention the risks of agistment without a written agistment agreement. Where stock is agisted on a property for 12 months or more, ownership can be jeopardised if the agistment property goes into receivership or insolvency. The situation I came across […]

New Requirements for Vendor Statements

New Requirements for Vendor Statements by Jacqui Brauman Yet another amendment to section 32 of the Sale of Land Act has been introduced and is due to commence on 1 October 2014. This section requires vendors to provide a vendor statement to prospective purchasers before they sign a contract. For solicitors, it is a total […]

Family Violence Intervention Orders

Family Violence Intervention Orders by Matthew Elvin. Family Violence Intervention Orders are intended to protect family members who are affected by family violence from the perpetrator of the violence. “Family violence” includes behaviour between family members which causes a family member to be fearful for his or her safety or wellbeing. It can include threats, physical abuse, […]

Small Business Succession

Small Business Succession Small business succession planning is vital, both to take control of your business’  future and to increasing its value. Most importantly, with succession planning, is the contingency plan – so that if something happens to us, we don’t leave our family and employees in the lurch. Contact us to arrange a chat […]

Solicitors Acting as Executors

Solicitors Acting as Executors If you don’t feel like you have anyone appropriate to appoint as your executor in your will, then you may look to appoint a trustee company, such as the State Trustees, or another professional, such as the solicitor preparing your Will. The office of executor is generally gratuitous. However, the Supreme […]

Baby-Boomer Retirement and Business Succession

Baby-Boomer Retirement and Business Succession In 2013, RMIT University completed a report based on a survey of 5,000 randomly selected Australian small businesses. It showed that: the average age of the owners was 58 the proportion of owners who were 65 or older was 25% within Australia, Victoria accounted for 35% of the firms (NSW/ACT […]

Recovering Debts from Companies

Recovering Debts from Companies by Matthew Elvin If a company has failed to pay you or your business a sum greater than $2,000 by the due date, one of the first things you should consider is whether to issue a Statutory Demand for Payment of a Debt (“a Statutory Demand”). At first glance, Statutory Demands […]

Family Farm Succession Planning

Family Farm Succession Planning Farmers and primary producers who run livestock or grow crops or use their rural properties to engage in the manufacture of products (such as grape growers and dairy farmers) covers a broad range of people with special needs. One of the most common examples of the challenges facing family farm succession […]

Death and Taxes: the Basics

Death and Taxes: the Basics by Jacqui Brauman I often get asked if “probate still exists”. Yes, probate still exists, but probate is not a tax. Essentially, a grant of probate is the authorisation an executor gets from the Supreme Court once a Will has been proved and allows an executor to deal with estate […]

What do Consumer Guarantees cover?

What do Consumer Guarantees cover? In Australia, most consumer transactions are now covered by the national Australian Consumer Law legislation (“the ACL”). The ACL is designed to protect consumers and to ensure fair trading. Under the ACL, suppliers and manufacturers automatically provide guarantees about certain goods they sell, hire or lease, and services they provide […]

Family Trust Succession

Family Trust Succession Your family discretionary trust was probably set up by your accountant with the primary purpose being tax and income flexibility. As you age, your priorities will change, and if you are looking at a succession plan for your family trust (particularly if your business is run in your family trust), then your […]

Consumer Guarantees – What does a supplier guarantee?

Consumer Guarantees – What does a supplier guarantee? by Matthew Elvin Last week I explained what the Consumer Guarantees under the Australian Consumer Law (“the ACL”) are and when they apply. This week I detail the guarantees that a supplier must provide a consumer under the ACL. Firstly, a supplier guarantees a number of things […]

Consumer Guarantees – what services are guaranteed?

Consumer Guarantees – what services are guaranteed? I have recently written about the Consumer Guarantees that suppliers provide to consumers under the Australian Consumer Law generally, and, in particular, in relation to the supply of goods. In this article, I discuss the Consumer Guarantees as they apply to services and service suppliers. Firstly, a supplier […]

Charities in Your Will

Charities in Your Will by Jacqui Brauman Australians are a giving nation, with a long proud history of charitable giving – ranging from modest gifts on flag days to charitable trusts whose endowments now measure in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Many well-know charitable trusts have been established by Wills. These include Archibald Prize […]

Are “No Refund” Signs Legal?

Are “No Refund” Signs Legal? In recent articles I have written about Consumer Guarantees under the Australian Consumer Law (“the ACL”). If you have not already read these articles, I encourage you to do so, especially if you are interested in what Consumer Guarantees are and when they apply. In this article I discuss “No […]

Family members who are vulnerable or have a disability

Family members who are vulnerable or have a disability by Jacqui Brauman When any of our family members are gamblers, alcoholics, drug-users, bankrupts or have a severe disability, we may be reluctant to leave a direct legacy to them in our Will out of fear of it being wasted or abused. But we shouldn’t avoid […]

Estate Proceeds Trusts: A Case Study

Estate Proceeds Trusts: A Case Study by Jacqui Brauman In this example, Sara’s husband Tim has died in an accident. They have two primary school aged children, Michael and Melissa. Tim and Sara had prepared Wills a few years prior, when the children were still very young. They were basic Wills, which simply ensured that […]

Fit For Purpose

Fit For Purpose by Matthew Elvin The “fit for purpose” guarantee as it applies to the provision of services requires that a service must achieve the consumer’s stated purpose; provided that the consumer makes the supplier aware of what the specified purpose is before the time of purchase. What this means is that service suppliers […]