What is PEXA and how can it benefit me? – Jessica Wadwell

JRWPEXA is a platform for e-conveyancing and facilitates an electronic settlement of your sale or purchase of land in real-time. Put in its simplest form, it is part of the e-conveyancing process that deals with property settlement and land registration, and is supported by legislation nationally.  It is anticipated that by 1 July 2019, electronic settlements will be compulsory in NSW.

Most conveyancers and solicitors are making the move towards electronic settlements now as it provides greater certainty and security of a successful property settlement. Whilst there are various factors that can impact a property settlement, a simple matter of documents not arriving or a cheque being spelt incorrectly can delay a settlement by days. … Read More

Surcharge Land Tax & Stamp Duty – Ken Sorrenson

KJSbwLast year, the New South Wales Government introduced surcharge land tax and stamp duty upon land purchases and land holdings by foreign persons. The surcharges are payable in addition to land tax and stamp duty normally payable and they are significant –

  • The land tax surcharge is 0.75% for the 2017 year increasing to 2% for 2018 onwards; and
  • The stamp duty surcharge from 1 July 2017 is a massive 8%.

Both surcharges relate to residential land only and were intended to put a brake on the level of foreign investment which was seen as driving escalating home prices particularly in the Sydney market.… Read More

Suitable duties – where do you stand and for how long? – Libby Campbell

Sometimes getting back to work after a workplace injury is not a seamless transition, particularly if you can’t perform your previous role. If after an injury your doctor has certified you capable of doing some work or even your pre-injury work hours, but has placed restrictions on what type of work you can do, this can become tricky to navigate what your role at work will be with your employer. Some examples of restrictions your doctor may have provided could be a restriction in the amount of weight you are able to lift, the number of hours you are either able to sit or stand for, or a restriction on where in the workplace you are able to work.… Read More

Insolvent Trading – Clint Coles

CCA company is its own legal entity. While it doesn’t have a pulse, just like a person, a company can enter into contracts, incur debts, sue and be sued in its own name.

The directors of a company however must be living, breathing people. They are the people that control the company.  Although the company is able to do things in its own name, it does so at the will of the directors.

Because a company is a separate entity from the directors that guide it, normally a company’s debts are repaid only from the company’s assets. The company’s creditors do not have access to the directors’ personal assets to repay the company’s debts.… Read More

Licence Conditions – Natasha Wood

NKW-booksAs of Monday 20 November 2017 changes to the Graduated Licensing Scheme (the process you go through from learner to fully licensed driver) are being implemented for new licence holders.

These changes only apply to new licence holders, being people applying for a new category of licence after 20 November 2017.

For new licence holders after 20 November 2017, there are 3 major changes:

1. Hazard Perception Test

The Hazard Perception Test (“HPT”) is a computer based test that measures a driver’s ability to recognise potentially dangerous situations and respond appropriately. Currently Provisional P1 (red) licence holders must pass the HPT to progress to a Provisional P2 (green) licence.… Read More

Why Choose A Company? – Terry Robinson

TLRbwCompanies are a common structure favoured by businesses, particularly where there are a number of unrelated parties involved. One of the main reasons for this is because the shares in the company provide for a clear definition of the interest or share held by each shareholder in the company and its assets and also because it facilitates with relative ease, the sale and purchase of shares and accordingly the change of shareholders’ interests in the company.

Another draw card prompting people to use a company structure, is the ability to lock in a flat corporate tax rate in the year in which the income is derived, with the potential for shareholders to claim franking credits when dividends are subsequently paid.… Read More

Welcome, Libby Campbell.

Libby_Campbell web croppedMy name is Libby Campbell and I have recently joined the team at Everingham Solomons as a Solicitor.

I was born and educated in Tamworth where I attended Tamworth Public School and McCarthy Catholic College. I then attended the University of New England in Armidale graduating with a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Sociology, and a Bachelor of Laws before completing my studies with a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice through the College of Law in Sydney.

While I love visiting the capital cities and traveling overseas, I choose to live and work in Tamworth because our region provides wonderful opportunities and lifestyle.… Read More

Protecting assets in the event of a relationship breakdown – Sophie Newham

SKNThe Family Law Act 1975 deals with adjusting the assets and liabilities of separated married and de-facto couples. A property settlement is not a “right”, but rather the court must consider if it is fair and reasonable in all the circumstances for a property settlement to take place at all.

If a property settlement is necessary, the court must consider what actually constitutes the assets and liabilities of the parties. Often the issue of liabilities becomes a vexed issue.  For instance, is money provided by parents a gift or a loan which must be repaid?  If it is deemed to be a gift was it made to one or both parties? … Read More

Citizen by birth or citizen by descent – Mark Grady

MKG-newSection 44 of the Constitution has never been as interesting as it is now, especially in the seat of New England. There are five cases including our local member, who are to be referred to the High Court.  The facts in each case are different but all involve s.44(i) of the Constitution.

Section 44(i) states that any person is disqualified if they are “a subject or citizen or entitled to the rights or privileges of a subject or citizen of a foreign power”.

The section has been looked at by the High Court most comprehensively in Sykes v Cleary [2] [1992] HCA60 (Sykes case).… Read More

Be Careful What You Promise – Lesley McDonnell

LAMThe deceased married Carol in 1988. They separated in 2008 and were divorced in 2011. On the day of their divorce, the deceased and Carol entered a Contract concerning their financial affairs. The Contract was expressed to be in consideration of each of the deceased and Carol settling disputes arising out of their matrimonial affairs. Under the Contract, the deceased agreed to provide that on his death one half of his interest in a hotel business (now valued at some $4.5 million) would be gifted to their 2 daughters, Diane and Suzanne.

In 2014, 11 days before he died, the deceased made a Will which provided in effect, that his interest in the hotel business would be divided equally between his four daughters, but only at the “Termination Date”.… Read More