Under Australian law, it is possible to discern several legal documents and proceedings that directly pertain to cases of distribution of an individual’s assets in cases of the person’s death. They include wills, powers of attorney, estate plans, testamentary trusts, superannuation death nominations, powers of guardianship, anticipatory direction, legal and financial housekeeping, etc. Thus, an estate plan may be defined under Australian law as a will or any other directions on how an individual desires to have his or her assets allocated after his or her death. An estate plan also involves legal documents that regulate how the person will be treated, both financially and medically, in case of his inability to make his own decisions in the future.
In a nutshell, an estate plan encircles all possible estate related documents and legal acts, such as a will, superannuation death nomination, testamentary trust, powers of attorney, powers of guardianship, and anticipatory direction. If an individual have made a binding nomination in his super or insurance policies, the beneficiaries named in those policies will override anyone specified in the will. If a person has a family trust, the trust will go on and its assets will also be distributed in accordance with the trust deed, irrespective of what has been written in the will.
The principle of irretrievable breaking down of a marriage as the only ground for divorce in Australia
Legal experts suggest that the laws that regulate marriage breakdown are subject to constant and substantial changes. Thus, the Family Law Act 1975 came into effect in January 1976, as a result of a protracted debate. The Act repealed the Matrimonial Causes Act 1961, which had rested on fault as the ground for divorce. The court used to consider the spouses as either guilty or innocent of matrimonial misconduct, such as cruelty, adultery and desertion (abandonment). It was incumbent on the applicants to prove that the other party had committed a matrimonial offence in order to succeed in the proceedings. Failure to prove the case would usually result in a court’s refusal to grant the divorce.
In the framework of the old system, the allocation of fault concerned such legal issues as property, maintenance and child custody, while a ‘guilty’ spouse could be punished by being denied contact with his or her children, or losing an entitlement to be financially supported by the other spouse. When the new Family Law Act came into effect in 1975, the number of divorces significantly increased. This is largely because the new legislation enabled a much easier no fault proceeding of divorce. However, the rapid increase in divorce numbers ignited vivid debates on whether the introduction of no fault divorce had degraded the institution of marriage by way of fostering marriage breakdown.
If you are a new business owner, whether by simple website or something more complex, you are sure to need some kind of marketing and advertising. However, commercial lawyers will advise you to take care with the wording so that you don’t become liable to litigation.
The problem may not even be your own, but those who pass training or information of any kind on as part of their work for you. Unless there are regular updates to the material and training to keep them up to date on any changes, they may not get it right, but you’ll be the one responsible.
In addition, if you use materials – including music – in your marketing or advertising, or if you compare your product or service to others that are better known, you risk being in breach of copyright. That is why it’s a good idea to look through a lawyer’s list before going ahead with any marketing information including brochures, website copy, YouTube clips, Facebook advertising, direct mail campaigns and even call centre scripts and product disclosure statements.
Not that long ago, the favourite type of property to purchase was the stand-alone home on a block of ground. These days, several factors have combined to make buying an apartment more popular. But property lawyers agree that most apartments in a complex have Strata Title, which is quite different from the titles of homes on blocks of ground. You need to know what these differences mean for you before going ahead with the purchase.
You will own your apartment, but in the complex there are many areas such as stairways, laundry rooms or social meeting rooms that are deemed to be ‘common property’. The upkeep and maintenance for these areas must be paid for by everyone who owns an apartment in the complex. So you’ll be in for an annual levy to make this possible. If the building has been poorly maintained it is likely to be a high levy due to the amount of maintenance needed. There may also be a second levy for what is known as a ‘sinking fund’ which addresses long term expenditure. You need to inquire about the balance of this fund to get some idea of what you are likely to have to pay, and if it’s enough to do the repairs that are needed.
In cases where there is abuse in a relationship and it falls apart, a restraining order may be necessary. A good family lawyer such as Robinson Family Lawyers will advise you how to take out a restraining order against an abusive ex and what the advantages of it are. They can give you specific advice for your situation that will explain all the legal ramifications of any decisions you make.
A restraining order can be taken out if there is –
If you are purchasing land, it’s important to know what the title is, because this can effect what you can do with it. It’s important to consult with property lawyers to ensure any problems to land use can be determined and explained in a way you can understand. Simply knowing the title may not be much use; you have to also know what it means to you and your property specifically in order to avoid any problems.
Here is a list of the different land titles in Western Australia and what they mean: –
Green title: This title usually indicates that the property has no areas on it that have to be shared. This is what most land sold for residential purposes is in WA. If it is a property with a free standing home, it is most often a green title. However, this is not always the case and you should look into the matter before signing on the dotted line, because occasionally green title does come with restrictions. One example could be a sewer line that runs through your property that could prevent you from adding an extension to the house or even installing a pool.
When couples split up one party may become violent or aggressive towards the other. In fact, this often happens well before any separation and can be the sole cause of the split. It can help to take out a Violence Restraining Order (VRO) on them to ensure they don’t come near you. Criminal lawyers can help you to apply and tell you whether the court is likely to grant the VRO.
No person should have to live in fear of another. Abuse takes many forms from physical injury to threatening by phone, text message or face to face, to destroying or harming your belongings. It can be stalking you or intimidating you in any way. It can be done by a spouse or partner, ex- spouse or ex- partner, parent, an adult child or relative, or anyone else.
If you have been charged with a traffic offence, what will happen? Much depends on how serious the charge is. A good criminal lawyer will tell you that minimum penalties for various offences have been pre-set and the court must apply these at the very least. They can also give a higher penalty if they think it is deserved, but not one that is lower than the minimum.
If your traffic offence is a serious one the best thing to do is contact a criminal lawyer and ask his or her advice. If you are not sure how serious it is you can find out by going online to a traffic authority website, but it is better to consult a lawyer because there could be extenuating circumstances that may reduce the penalty in your case. Each case is different and will be judged accordingly.
There is a great deal to know about property law and what makes it more difficult is that it changes in some way for each state. So if, for instance, you decide to buy a home without consulting a commercial lawyer, you could well do your research from a website that is not in your state unless you are very careful.
Buying and selling real estate is a legal process. There are contracts that need to be drawn up and the wording of them is extremely important, especially in cases that are not cut and dried. While some people feel that all they need is a conveyancer to help them finish the process, it is possible that they are leaving themselves open to fraud, or to loss of some kind that they didn’t expect. And there are many ways by which you can lose money.
Many people go through the trauma of divorce and a large part of the bad feeling is due to deciding what a fair property settlement is. Mostly, the two who are divorcing cannot agree on this question and it must be left up to the family lawyers to decide, or the courts, if an amicable settlement cannot be decided on.
It is often assumed that a 50/50 share of all assets and debts would be the fairest solution, but it is not that easy. For a start, one party may have had a lot of assets – or a lot of debts – before they even got married. It hardly seems fair that their ex-spouse has to be responsible for half of that. Then again, one partner may have received an inheritance or compensation for injury, so is the other party entitled to a share of that?
Intellectual Property (IP) comprises a series of legal ownership claims that include trademarks, copyrights, patents, trade secrets and industrial design rights. Small businesses or startups focus less on IP and consequently involve in lawyers in expensive legal issues. This article shares useful tips to help entrepreneurs guard their ideas and IP policy.
Tip#1: Solemnize Ownership Agreement
A precise agreement formalizing the ownership amongst the people involved in the business should be made. The agreement should clearly state the business owner/s and how the dividends created by IP will be shared among the founders; upon company’s expansion or merger.
Tip#2: Spend Wisely on Patent Filing
Patent expenses should be focused on strategic IP protection because patent filing is expensive. Sensitive business ideas and core patentable schemes should be revealed to a selected few who have agreed to sign a Non Disclosure Agreement (NDA). Consult a legal professional and opt for a provisional patent application first with the U.S Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is an intelligent way for creating temporary IP protection.
Tip#3: Protect Writing Materials
To protect manual, guide, documents and publicity material from infringement, U.S. law supports copyright notices since 1989. Therefore, to avoid legal hassles in the future, ensure that your company stamps all the materials with the copyright symbol or the word “copyright” and the year of creation and first publication.
The Local Court’s Small Claims Division was created to hear and rule over cases regarding small debt recovery. They also deal with claims for damages or demands. A small claim is considered anything of $10,000 or less. The goal of this division is to hold jurisdiction for quick, inexpensive, informal legal proceedings. Another important factor is that the normal rules of evidence are not applicable.
The Small Claims Division was originally made so that people could initiate small claims, without the need for legal representation. This is useful for those who would otherwise be unable to afford to make legal claims. However, it also means that the division is limited with how much they can award. The amounts must be in scale to the claims, and remain “small”.
Once the defendant has been served with a statement of claim, they can file a notice indicating that they intend to defend against the claim. The case is then scheduled for a pre-trial review, which will take place in front of a registrar. Both parties must try to come to terms at this pre-trial, without needing to take the matter further. If they can’t come to an agreement, a small claims hearing is organised. Contact competent Debt Recovery Lawyers
Misleading information can take many forms, and country of origin labelling has been a hot topic and kept lawyers busy for some time in Australia. A new system for labelling has been approved by the Australian Government. The plan is for the new labels to start hitting supermarket shelves towards the end of 2015. The changes are related Australia’s Country of Origin Labelling laws that were enacted in February. This is primarily due to a large number of complaints, regarding contaminated foods reaching the Australian supermarkets. One infamous incident involved berries that were said to contain Hepatitis A, which were brought into the country from China.
Who Will Be Affected?
Any business or manufacturer that sells food needs to be aware of the new labelling requirements. This includes any products that contain food, and not just fresh foods. Australian citizens were found, thanks to a survey, to be unaware of what “Made in Australia” actually meant. The new regulations are intended to eliminate this type of confusion. In the future, businesses will be required to specify which parts of a product are actually Australian.
There are a lot of ways to lose money through business contracts, and stamp duties are a big factor. People lose huge amounts of money every year, and it is often due to the “traps” that they commonly fall victim to. One of these involves losing a business trust deed, and failing to follow the best course of actions to rectify the problem. If you want to try and avoid excessive fees, it pays to be aware of what to do. This article deals with some of the most common ways that people can deal with a lose business trust.
Losing Your Business Trust Deed
If the times comes when you want to make changes within your business, losting your trust deed can be a disaster. This includes if you must change your trustee, modify beneficiaries, sell assets or business, or carry out other dealings with the trust.
If you have been following the news, it should come as no surprise to learn that debt is high in Australia. With more people owing money, and also having less money to pay back their debts, there’s a good chance that you have some debt of your own. Otherwise, many people are on the other side of the money lending. When dealing with people who owe you money, or those you are in debt to, there are ways to behave. More importantly, there are some types of behaviour that creditors or debt collectors are to avoid.
Debt collectors are not to harass someone who owes them money. This includes physical threats, of course. But it also expands into the realm of contacting someone more than needed, or doing so during odd hours. The Competition and Consumer Act 2010, as well as other laws, actually make this type of behaviour illegal. Even if someone owes you money, it is against the law to harass them in any way.
Just about everyone has bought something that was not quite what they wanted. This will have often been due to the seller’s guarantee that the item could fill certain needs. Many people could probably give numerous reasons for being unhappy with their various purchases. It has also come to people’s minds to try to fix the situation. After all, there are rules in place to stop suppliers from taking advantage of their customers.
Consumers in Australia are protected by the Australian Consumer Law, which is also known as the ACL. The provisions of this law afford buyers a number of courses of action, should they buy something that isn’t what was promised. And these courses of actions can be taken against suppliers of goods, manufacturers, and even providers of credit. The following relates only to actions against suppliers.
What Can Consumers Do?
This largely depends how major the problem is. If it is a minor incident, and the seller is willing and able to provide a new product, it is good enough for the law. If the failure of the seller isn’t major, the customer in Australia might not even be able to ask for a refund and reject the goods. In case of a major failure on the part of the seller, the customer might be able to totally reject the product, and get a full refund of their money.
A legal will makes it easier to distribute the assets of the departed individual, and is based on a person’s own preferences. Therefore, it is always best to see either a good family lawyer that specialises in Wills or a commercial lawyer to have it made. The will determines which family member will inherit what property, which saves everyone from conflicts later on. In the situation where there are no family members to inherit the property, the will outlines the name of a relative, a friend, a charity or any chosen person that the departed wanted to give away their property to.
On the other hand, when an individual dies without a will, the condition is called as intestacy. There are laws made for dealing with such situations which outline the distribution of the deceased’s properties, personal belongings, and money. You can opt for the documents mentioned below to settle the matter in such a scenario.
Having suitable commercial premises at an ideal location is an investment decision which can either propel your business to new heights of success, or just doom it to the life of obscurity. To make sure that your business sees foot traffic, you need to make sure that you buy or lease the ideal place to set up your new enterprise.
Do you know the steps to leasing the property of your choice? Since a leasing contract is legally binding, it signifies that any errors on your part can prove to be problematic and may even lead to any legal actions against you. It would be hard for you to plead ignorance of any vital step in the leasing process later. That is why it is crucial for you to know how to lease a business premises in Australia in the right way.
There are seven main steps which help you lease premises as your commercial property, according to the legal acts binding in Australia. These 7 steps are,
Carefully consider all your leasing needs
Do research and also inspect the premises
Obtain all forms of outlined preliminary documentation
The thought of passing away is enough to cause many Australians to put off creating a will. However, unless there is a formal declaration regarding property, assets, and final wishes, many problems can arise. Below are some of the most pressing reasons for you to make a will as soon as possible.
Legal Definitions of “Spouse”
A new Succession Act in NSW (The Succession Amendment (Intestacy) Act 2009) has expanded the definition of “spouse” to include anyone who is a domestic partner to the diseased when they die. This not only includes wives or husbands, but partners and de facto spouses. Because of this new definition, it is possible for someone to die while having more than one spouse. Trouble can easily arise here, especially if there is no solid will to sort the matter out.
Imagine that a father has owned a family business for decades, and the daughter has helped to operate that business for the past 10 years. The father has been promising to pass the business to the daughter, as she has been there to help it thrive. But what if another child, the brother, has recently gone through some terrible debts? The father changes the will so that the son receives half of the business, assuming that the daughter will understand the situation. The daughter is outraged by this, since the son did nothing to help the business in his whole life. Through a series of challenges to the re-written will, both the brother and sister are left with much less money than they had after the father’s passing. By simply seeking out the appropriate legal representation, the father could have included something that dealt with his verbal promise to the daughter. This would have saved each of the siblings a lot of grief and money.
The Queensland Government has submitted a proposal to amend smoking laws in the state. If brought in, this law would make e-cigarettes and personal vaporisers fall under the same regulatory laws as tobacco products. If passed, the amendments would take effect on in 2015. This would make Queensland the first state in Australia to pass legislation regarding e-cigarettes. There are no regulations for the popular devices in any other part of Australia. However, there has been much criticism for the new laws, since there is no concrete evidence about the effects of using e-cigarettes.
A report that was released by the World Health Organisation (Electronic nicotine delivery systems) is claimed to be the driving force behind the new legislation in Queensland. The devices are not going to be banned, but selling them to minors, or even advertising them for sale will be against the law. In addition, it will be illegal to use them in any place where smoking tobacco is already not allowed.
What Are the Amendments?
In keeping with the laws regarding the advertisement and sale of nicotine products in Queensland, it will also be illegal to advertise or sell e-cigarettes without legal approval. E-cigarettes are generally advertised as being a good aid for people who want to quit smoking. The problem is that there is not enough evidence to suggest that there are any health benefits to switching over to these devices, instead of smoking tobacco.