Publications

23 02, 2022

Senate Permanently Allows for Electronic Signing, Witnessing, & Virtual Meetings

  February 2022 | Natasha Thomas COVID-19 has highlighted the contemporary need for law reform concerning the legal validity of electronic documents, and virtual company meetings. To learn more about how the law has adapted to COVID-19 see our article here. Responding to these changes and pressures, on 10 February 2022 the Senate passed the Corporations Amendments (Meetings and Documents) Bill 2021, its reforms permanently modernising corporation law. The reforms outlined in this legislation include: allowing companies to hold meetings

18 01, 2022

Companies – Virtual Meetings & Electronic Execution of Documents

  January 2022 | Natasha Thomas COVID-19 restrictions presented unique legal challenges for companies, including the ability to hold in-person meetings and validly execute documents. Responding to this, in 2020 the Australian Government amended the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) to allow companies or registered schemes to employ virtual meeting technology. The changes to the law permitted companies or registered schemes to: hold virtual meetings; distribute meeting-related documents in electronic form; and execute documents electronically. With COVID-19 showing limited signs

27 01, 2021

Have You Done This for Your Will?

January 2021 | Jonathan Harris Creating your Will shouldn’t be a stressful task we are here to help. This article provides guidance on how to avoid commonly made mistakes when planning for you and your loved ones futures. Plan! The biggest mistake you could make is not to plan. To ensure your assets are passed onto the intended beneficiaries, it is important that you create a valid Will. Seek legal advice Seeking legal advice when creating your Will can

10 07, 2020

Employers Beware! Rossato Judgment a Win-Win for Employees

July 2020 | Jonathan Harris The Full Court of the Federal Court in WorkPac Pty Ltd v Rossato [2020] FCAFC 84 (Rossato) has again confirmed that a ‘casual’ employee who works systematic and regular hours is entitled to the same paid leave entitlements as permanent employees. Facts Between 28 July 2014 and 9 April 2018 Mr. Rossato was a mine-worker employed by recruitment agency WorkPac for companies within the Glencore Group. Between these dates Mr. Rossato was employed under

17 04, 2020

Let’s Talk About the Spanish Flu

April 2020 | Scott Freidman The Spanish flu lasted from January 1918 to December 1920. 500 million people were infected and the death toll is estimated to have been anywhere from 17 million to 100 million. Australia was not immune and it is believed to have been carried to our shores through returning WWI soldiers. Australia lost about 15,000 people.  How did the NSW government respond to the Spanish flu pandemic? In fact, very quickly! In November of 1918

15 04, 2020

When Was the Last Time Australia Enacted Moratorium Legislation? 

April 2020 | Scott Freidman Moratorium legislation is typically enacted in periods of civil unrest e.g. wars and recession. However, moratorium legislation can also be effective during periods of pandemic chaos. The word ‘moratorium’ is defined as “a temporary prohibition of an activity”. In a legal context, ‘moratorium legislation’ effects a temporary suspension of certain laws until such time as the suspension becomes unnecessary or issues related to the suspension have been resolved. The Federal Government has announced a

15 04, 2020

Don’t Forget to Claim the Tax Deductions Hiding in Your Home Office

April 2020 | Jonathan Harris In view of the outbreak of COVID-19, more and more office employees are being forced or encouraged to work from home where possible. As such, office employees must not forget to claim the tax deductions hiding in their home offices. On Tuesday, 7 April 2020, the ATO announced that taxpayers working from home could now claim 80 cents per hour for all of their running expenses (Shortcut Method), rather than calculating specific costs under

8 04, 2020

How Should My Business Approach the $1,500 Wage Subsidy?

April 2020 | Kieran Kelly The JobKeeper wage subsidy announced by the Federal Government last week was greeted with open arms by businesses and employees across Australia. Affected businesses will qualify for the subsidy if: they have a turnover less than $1 billion and turnover has decreased by at least 30%; or they have a turnover greater than $1 billion and turnover has decreased by at least 50%. Employees will be eligible if they: were employed by an eligible business

27 03, 2020

Residential Tenancy Laws – NSW Emergency Measures Legislation Update

March 2020 | Scott Freidman  On Wednesday, 25 March 2020, legislation came into effect giving the NSW Parliament powers to make new laws concerning residential tenancies in NSW to urgently address the unfolding health and economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The name of this legislation is the COVID-19 Legislation Amendment (Emergency Measures) Act 2020 (COVID-19 Act). The COVID-19 Act is designed to enable the NSW Parliament to pass legislation urgently, as and when needed, to protect the

26 03, 2020

Can a Tenant Terminate a Commercial Lease Due to the Coronavirus Crisis?

March 2020 | Kieran Kelly As businesses grind to a halt we have received many enquiries in relation to the rights of commercial landlords and tenants as the payment of rent becomes either difficult or impossible. The unprecedented measures introduced by the government to stem COVID-19 have already had a catastrophic impact on Australian businesses. The most sharply affected are those whose doors have already been ordered shut. They include pubs, restaurants, cafes, cinemas and gyms. As the economy

23 03, 2020

Insolvency & Bankruptcy Laws to be Relaxed 

March 2020 | Scott Freidman On 22 March 2020, the Morrison government announced that it will relax the insolvency and bankruptcy laws to keep businesses alive. We understand these measures will last for 6 months and will be passed by Parliament urgently. Here’s what you need to know: The government will increase the threshold at which a creditor can issue a statutory demand from $2,000 to $20,000. The threshold for the minimum amount of debt required for a creditor

23 03, 2020

Now Is the Time to Establish Your Business’ Survival Strategy

March 2020 | Scott Freidman The constantly changing conditions in which Australian businesses are operating are difficult to keep up with and it may be hard to see light on the other side of the coronavirus crisis. However, with correct and appropriate advice at an early stage you can take steps to be in the best possible position to rebound. Harris Freidman has long established relationships with a wide range of insolvency professionals who will: analyse your business and