Blog

25 03, 2019

Genuine Redundancy vs Unfair Dismissal. It Pays to Know the Difference! 

March 2019 | Scott Freidman The recent case of Ken McShane v Port of Newcastle [2019] FWC 177 has restated the general principles applied in determining whether an employee has been let go as a result of a genuine redundancy, or if they were, in fact, unfairly dismissed. This matter was brought to the Fair Work Commission by Mr McShane against the Port of Newcastle (PON) on the 10th of August 2018. Mr McShane alleged the decision of the

18 03, 2019

Tax, What Tax?!

March 2019 | Les Stubbs One of the most important benefits and advantages of consulting a specialist family lawyer is to be properly advised on your legal rights and obligations before a potential problem arises from the breakdown of your relationship. A significant concern for many separating or separated people is the tax consequence of their separation. In our complicated taxation system in Australia, tax arises in so many circumstances – for example on your income, however that may

25 02, 2019

How Watertight is Your Will? Family Provision 101

February 2019 | Jonathan Harris You have worked long and hard to accumulate the assets that will comprise your estate. So it’s your choice who inherits under your will, right? Not necessarily. As a will-maker, you may not be able to prevent family members and dependants excluded under your will from ultimately making a claim for a share (or a greater share) of your estate after your death. A will-maker’s freedom of disposition is curtailed by the Succession Act

24 02, 2019

Can You Change a Child’s Name After Separation?

January 2019 | Georgia Dight Family lawyers are often asked by parents whether they are able to change their child’s surname after separation or divorce. This generally occurs when a parent has reverted to their maiden name or is marrying a new partner with a different name to their own. In New South Wales, a name change includes amending any part of a name (even a hyphenation). So when a parent comes to us and raises the issue of

18 02, 2019

New Community-Based Sentences for Criminal Offences in NSW

February 2019 | Scott Freidman Over the years we have become accustomed to hearing media references to court sentences meted out for criminal offences. Terminology such as “suspended sentences”, “good behaviour bonds” and “home detention” are often not unfamiliar to us. Our experience with these sentences may have been more direct, particularly for young adults whose social activities place them at higher risk of running up against law enforcement authorities. In more recent times there has been a movement

18 02, 2019

Risks Posed by Departing Employees: Is Your Business Protected?

February 2019 | Kieran Kelly We have recently been asked to advise several clients in relation to the protections they have in place from former employees who have joined a competitor. The scenario often takes a common form: a trusted senior employee hands in their notice of resignation; the employer discovers or is informed that the former employee is joining a market competitor; and the employer seeks advice in relation to whether they have any protections in place to

31 01, 2019

Insolvency Practitioners, Trading Trusts and Priorities: Uncertain Times

January 2019 | Kieran Kelly Insolvency practitioners have been faced with uncertainty as to whether the priority regime in the Corporations Act should apply when companies that have conducted their business through a trading trust enter into receivership or liquidation. Subject to certain “priority” creditor provisions, the Corporations Act seeks to provide for the equal treatment of unsecured creditors. Secured creditors are given priority to recover their claims in full. Expenses properly incurred by a liquidator or receiver and

31 01, 2019

New Year, New You – Tackle Your Estate Plan

January 2019 | Jonathan Harris Estate planning is something most of us put off “until next year” – it’s just too difficult. We promise it’s not! Sure, it can involve some difficult decisions, but that’s because it is one of the most important plans of your life and you should think hard about it.  Consider that an estate plan isn’t so much for your own benefit but rather for the benefit and protection of your loved ones.  Would you

31 01, 2019

New Rental Reforms to Protect Victims of Domestic Violence

January 2019 | Ariza Arif New tenancy reforms to improve the protections for victims of domestic violence living in a rented property will commence on 28 February 2019. Currently victims of domestic violence must give 14 days’ notice to break a fixed-term lease and face financial penalties for doing so. The changes mean that  victims will be able to break a lease without penalty. To end the tenancy in circumstances of domestic violence, the victim will need to give

20 12, 2018

If Your Child is Asking for a Loan, Don’t Break the Golden Rule!

December 2018 | Jonathan Harris If your child is in a state of financial need, it is understandable that you, as a parent, would want to help them. In recent times there has been an increase in the number of parents giving their adult children an “early inheritance” – that is, providing money to children before their wealth would otherwise have been distributed upon their death. However, these arrangements are not always as simple as

20 12, 2018

Attention All: Stay Safe this ‘Silly Season’

December 2018 | Scott Freidman The Christmas and New Year period is a time to enjoy the company of family and friends. However, the 'silly season' can also be a busy time of the year for lawyers. A combination of excessive alcohol consumption, increased traffic and heightened stress levels means clients and their loved ones may find themselves in an accident or otherwise having done something they later regret. Many of you have young adult children, so the information

7 12, 2018

Don’t Fall Foul of New Pension Rules

December 2018 | Jonathan Harris Serious consequences for failing to make minimum payments You probably know that the ATO has confirmed the consequences of not meeting the minimum payment requirements for pensions. A pension ceases at the start of the financial year in which the minimum pension requirement is not met and will only recommence after new pension documents are executed. Most recently however, the ATO confirmed that the pension will cease for transfer balance cap purposes at the