Property incurs land tax because Will did not give beneficiary right to use it as their residence

By Stuart O’Neill, Special Counsel A recent decision of the Western Australian Supreme Court has highlighted the care that needs to be taken when drafting provisions in a Will dealing with residential property and the incidence of land tax. The Court held a property owned by the trustee of a testamentary trust created under a
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Queensland Government extends family primary production transfer duty concession to transfers to first cousins

By Stuart O’Neil, Special Counsel The Queensland Government has offered further assistance to Queensland farming families who wish to implement succession planning arrangements by allowing the family primary production transfer duty concession to apply to transfers to first cousins. Under the Queensland Duties Act, the concession is only available for transfers to defined family members
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Step Children of De facto Couples Entitled to Make Claims on Estates

By Troy Palmer, Special Counsel, Scott Colvin, Law Graduate Last week, the Victorian Court of Appeal dismissed an appeal against a 2016 decision of the Supreme Court concerning the ability of stepchildren to make claims against the estates of their deceased step parents. The Court of Appeal confirmed that the children of de facto spouses
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Farm Management Grants are now available for Succession Planning Advice

Farm Management Grants to assist eligible Queensland primary producers or their relatives with succession planning advice are available from 23 March 2017. The grants provide a rebate of 50% of the amount paid for the advice, up to a maximum of $2,500 per financial year, to offset the costs of the advice. This is an
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Extension of the family primary production duty concession creates long awaited succession planning opportunities for farming families

By Stuart O’Neill, Special Counsel  A long awaited amendment to the Queensland Duties Act, extending the family primary production duty concession to inter-generational transfers for value, has commenced from 1 July 2016. The Duties and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2016 (Qld) received assent on 27 June 2016.  It removes the requirement for inter-familial transfers of
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The Benefits of Testamentary Trusts in a Will

Sophisticated Wills often include options for beneficiaries to receive their distribution from the estate via a ‘testamentary trust’. A testamentary trust is a trust created by a Will, where the distribution is held ‘on trust’ for the benefit of an intended beneficiary. A clever way of constructing the testamentary trust is to form a discretionary
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Changes to Powers of Attorney in Victoria

By Edward Skilton, Special Counsel, Private Advisory Team The Powers of Attorney Act 2014 commenced today (1st September 2015). There are a few practical changes to the use of powers of attorney that I would like to draw to your attention. I would also like to take the opportunity to remind you of relevant considerations
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PART 4: Changes to succession dispute laws in Victoria to commence from 1 January 2015

By Edward Skilton, Special Counsel, Private Advisory Team, Mills Oakley Lawyers 30th October, 2014 The Justice Legislation Amendment (Succession and Surrogacy) Act 2014 was proclaimed on 29 October 2014. Please see Part 1 of this series of articles for a discussion of the original draft proposed changes, which would have offered increased protection against Will
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Testamentary Freedom vs Testamentary Obligation From Around The World

Under the Succession legislation in all Australian States you will see an attempt by those legislatures to balance the age old doctrine of testamentary freedom (the ability to give your property to who you choose) with the doctrine of moral obligation, (the requirement to provide for persons the community deems you owe it to). The
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The Problem Child and Family Trusts

Recent statistics show there are now more than 700,000 discretionary  trusts in Australia used for substantial family investments, business interests and sometimes both. Applied to the average Australian family these conservative estimates mean more than 10% of the Australian population are potential beneficiaries of trusts. Typically distributions are not actually received by the beneficiary beyond
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PART 3: Parliament passes changes to succession dispute laws in Victoria

By Edward Skilton, Special Counsel, Private Advisory Team, Mills Oakley Lawyers 16th October, 2014 The Justice Legislation Amendment (Succession and Surrogacy) Bill 2014 (“Bill”) was passed by the Victorian Parliament this afternoon. Please see Part 1 of this series of articles for a discussion of the original draft proposed changes, which would have offered increased
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PART 2: Proposed changes to succession dispute laws in Victoria

By Edward Skilton, Special Counsel, Private Advisory Team, Mills Oakley Lawyers 18th September, 2014 NOTE: These changes have now passed Parliament. Please click here to view our updated post. The Justice Legislation Amendment (Succession and Surrogacy Bill) 2014 (“Bill”) was recently introduced by the Legislative Council and was debated in Parliament this week (after being
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PART 1: Proposed changes to succession dispute laws in Victoria

By Edward Skilton, Special Counsel, Private Advisory Team, Mills Oakley 4th September, 2014 NOTE: These changes have now been debated in Parliament. Please click here to view our updated post. The Justice Legislation Amendment (Succession and Surrogacy Bill) 2014 (“Bill”) was recently introduced by the Legislative Council and is scheduled to be debated in Parliament
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Is your Estate succession plan safe? Part 1: NSW “Notional Estate” claims – the new attack weapon?

An estate succession plan may leave particular family members of the deceased feeling that they have not been sufficiently provided for under the deceased’s estate succession plan. A disgruntled family member may be able to use the often overlooked NSW Notional Estate provisions to bring a testator family maintenance claim (or the threat of such
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Is your Estate succession plan safe? Part 2: VLRC rejects notional estates – some cautionary warnings

On 15 October 2013, the Victorian Law Reform Commission (VLRC) released its final report on Victoria’s succession laws. The VLRC recommended that the notional estate provisions that exist in NSW should not be adopted in Victoria. Leaving aside whether Parliament adopts the VLRC’s recommendation, the rejection of “notional estate” provisions in Victoria does not mean
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