What are your legal obligations when you are involved in a car accident?

After the terrifying incident which occurred in Victoria recently, there has been more talk about what you are required to do when you are involved in a car accident.

In NSW, under the Road Transport Act 2013 it is an offence if you are driving and you fail to stop and assist after being involved in an impact which has caused injury or death. This could be impact with another vehicle, a person, or any other object. It also applies if a person is thrown from a vehicle.

Penalties for this offence are significant, with first time offences facing 18 months imprisonment and a $3,300.00… Read More

When does a person have capacity?

Capacity is a fickle thing which Solicitors and other professionals are required to assess before a person can make certain decisions for themselves.
There are many factors which can affect ones decision making capacity; including a number of medical conditions, disability, age, and level of education.

Under Australian Law there is a presumption that an adult has their own decision making capacity.

In addition to this, there are some documents where a specific test for capacity is required. These documents usually require that a person specifically understand the nature and effect of the documents that they are signing.

Generally, this means that a person must be able to:

• Understand the facts and the choices involved with the decision;

• Weigh up the consequences and potential ramifications of the decision;

• Make a decision free from the influence of family and without coercion; and

• Communicate their decision clearly.… Read More

“I’m so excited to be selected for Jury Service”…. said no one ever.

It’s happened. The dreaded jury service summons has appeared in your mail box and you are mentally trying to figure out how many seasons of Suits you can binge watch before you have to attend. But largely you are probably thinking… Do I have to?

If you have been summoned to serve on a jury then you are legally required to attend Court on the date provided in the summons. However there are some circumstances where you can apply to be exempt or excluded from serving.

To be excluded or exempt from jury duty means that you are not allowed to serve on a jury.… Read More

Riding in cars with Boys… and Girls.

Confused by the requirements for how to restrain children in the car? It can be quite daunting and sometimes hard to get accurate information regarding child restraints and the legal requirements for car seats.

So let us break it down for you.

Under the NSW Road Rules 2014 you must restrain a child as follows:

Age                                                         Type of restraint

0-6 months                                           Approved rear facing restraint

6 months to 4 years                            Rear or forward-facing approved child restraint with an inbuilt harness

4 years to 7 years                                Forward-facing approved child restraint with an inbuilt harness or an approved                                                                            booster seat

7 years plus (145cm or shorter)       It is strongly recommended to use an approved booster seat

7 years plus (145cm or taller)            Adult lap-sash seatbelt

Additional requirements for the above approved restraints are that they must be properly adjusted and fastened.… Read More

Where the bloody hell…. did my money go?

It is widely known that Australia is in the midst of a terrifying Bushfire season which have had a devastating effect on our residents, wildlife and fire services and others, physically, mentally and financially. The old Australian adage about how when times are tough, mateship prevails has proven to be true and in typical fashion the people of Australia have rallied. We have seen unprecedented levels of donations well into the hundreds of millions of dollars, to assist the victims, fire services, charities and wildlife agencies.

While many of these organisations are legitimately accepting donations to assist those in need, we have also seen an increase of scammers defrauding people by claiming to be assisting those affected by the bushfire disaster.… Read More

My Superannuation will go to the beneficiaries listed in my Will… Right?

Wrong! This is one of the biggest misconceptions people have when talking about Superannuation. Superannuation is not an asset of your estate, and as such is not distributed in accordance with your Will. Superannuation is distributed by, and at the discretion of, the Trustee of your Superfund.

Most people have provided their commercial superfund with a non-binding beneficiary nomination, however while it gives the Trustee an idea of who you would like to give the benefit of your superannuation, they are in no way bound by this nomination.

You can however override the discretion afforded to the Trustee of your Superfund by completing a Binding Death Benefit Nomination (BDBN) It is important to ensure that the BDBN is valid.… Read More

Sarah’s Rule – A recent change to the NSW road rules

As of the 26th of September 2019, NSW has had a change to one of its road rules. From this date Motorists will be required to slow down when passing stationary Emergency or breakdown / tow vehicles which are displaying flashing lights.
A trial version of this rule change has been in effect for the past 12 months, however amendments to this have been made due to public feedback.
So what does this actually mean for Motorists?
Motorist will now be required to slow down when passing stationary vehicles which are displaying red and blue or yellow flashing lights. These vehicles include Ambulances, Police vehicles, Fire and Rescue vehicles, State Emergency Service vehicles, Volunteer Rescue Organisation’s vehicles, Traffic Commander vehicles, Transport Emergency vehicles, Tow Trucks and Breakdown Assistance vehicles.… Read More

Should you accept a lesser deposit?

When selling your property, it is usual for a purchaser to pay 10% of the purchase price as a deposit for the property. This money is usually held by the Real Estate Agent and under the standard conditions of the Contract can be recovered by Vendor if the Purchaser defaults on the Contract.

However, it is becoming increasingly more popular for Purchasers to ask if you will accept a 5% deposit or sometimes even less.

So what happens if you accept a lesser deposit?

Most of the time, the transaction is completed as normal and the money that would have been held as a deposit is simply paid to the Vendor at settlement.… Read More