What happens to a testator’s Will after divorce?

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Going through a divorce may upset the best laid out estate plans by partially or completely revoking a couple’s Wills. Jennifer and Thomas were married for 5 years before Jennifer filed for divorce earlier this year. They have 2 children under the age of 10 and previously executed a Will appointing each other as the […]

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When gifting your estate, why stop at grandchildren?

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Just how many generations of your descendants should you consider in your Will and is there an easy way to do it? No one has ever said that to me before. My client had just remarked: “I expect to live to be one hundred”. He was deadly serious. That may not have come as a […]

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Work test exempt contributions (aka ‘last drinks contributions’) details now released

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In the 2018 May Budget, the Government announced the proposal to allow individuals who are recent retirees and who have attained age 65, to make last chance voluntary contributions by providing a one year exemption from the work test. This proposal will apply from 1 July 2019 to the 2019/20 and subsequent financial years. As […]

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Can an email serve as a good notice under a contract?

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Electronic communication is certainly the dominant method of communication nowadays and it is tempting to believe that in today’s modern society sending a simple email as opposed to a formal letter will surely serve as a valid notice under a contract. Let’s consider an example. John is a tenant and his initial lease term is […]

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Can an SMSF lease residential property to a related party?

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“No” is probably the first answer that comes to mind but it is actually “maybe”, if we are to believe the full Federal Court in the judgement it handed down in the Aussiegolfa Pty Ltd (Trustee) v Commissioner of Taxation [2018] case last month. One of the issues the Court examined is whether the leasing of a […]

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No joy in pulling the ATO’s tail

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An SMSF trustee who objected to an ATO determination about a breach of a trustee’s covenant found himself disqualified as a trustee. George Hart was a trustee of the Hart Superannuation Fund, a self-managed fund set up in 2003. The auditor of the fund lodged a contravention report against the fund because George arranged for […]

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Can you really disentitle a person from your Will?

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Does violence towards the deceased end the relative’s chances of a successful claim against the Will? It doesn’t matter what sort of ‘family’ unit you have – nuclear, blended or a step-family – family relationships can be challenging and complicated. It’s usually not until a testator has passed away that their estate becomes disputed and […]

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Limited capacity clients and their estate plans

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Advisers can face many challenges when working with clients who they believe may have limited capacity. What does it mean to be mentally/legally incapable? What is the test that is applicable? “Advisers can feel like they are walking a tightrope between the law and the expectations of their client and their families when they start […]

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Court sheds light on an enduring attorney’s right to extend a BDBN

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A significant ruling was recently handed down in the Queensland decision of Re Narumon Pty Ltd regarding an attorney’s right to extend a member’s binding death benefit nomination. The facts Mr Giles, the sole member of his SMSF, appointed both his wife and his sister (“Attorneys”) as his enduring attorneys for both financial and health […]

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Can you sue your SMSF auditor if things don’t go to plan?

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The NSW Court of Appeal has overturned the decision of the trial judge and held that an SMSF auditor was liable to pay damages for losses incurred by the SMSF. The case of Cam & Bear Pty Ltd v McGoldrick highlights the obligation of the fund’s auditor to protect the fund and its trustee against […]

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