Publications

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

18 03, 2020

Financial/Economic Abuse in Family Law: What Can I Do?

January 2019 | Ariza Arif The Family Law Act recognises financial abuse as a form of domestic and family violence. It is defined as: "unreasonably withholding financial support needed to meet the reasonable living expenses of the family member, or his or her child/ren, at a time when the family member is entirely or predominantly dependent on the person for financial support”. Financial/economic abuse, similar to emotional and psychological abuse, can be difficult to recognise and it can affect

29 11, 2019

I Want to See My Grandchildren, What Can I Do?

November 2019 | Ariza Arif Are you a grandparent who wants to spend time with your grandchildren? Did you know that grandparents can apply to a court under the Family Law Act for orders their grandchildren live with or spend time with them? It is often important for children to have a relationship with their grandparents. However, this does not mean grandparents have an automatic right to have contact with their grandchildren. It will always depend on what is

31 10, 2019

Whose Intellectual Property Is It Anyway?

October 2019 | Alex Shdidi When business owners are in the initial phases of building a business one aspect often overlooked is the protection of intellectual property (IP). This is understandable as the business owners are often thinking about cash-flow, increasing their customer base, marketing and the like, all of which are vital for the business. However, neglecting the IP needs of your business could prove costly in the long run. One such situation may occur when a  prospective

31 10, 2019

We’ve Reached a Family Law Agreement – What Should We Do?

October 2019 | Ariza Arif In the family law context, two people may come to an agreement in relation to property or parenting matters without speaking to a lawyer. They may also think it is sufficient for them to write the agreement down on a piece of paper and sign it. Does that make their agreement enforceable? The answer is “no”. This will be called a parenting plan or agreement and may be taken into account by a court, but

30 09, 2019

How to Avoid an Opal/Mascot Towers Debacle!

September 2019 | Margaret Rouen An Erskineville apartment block that was completed in April of 2018 is sitting empty following revelations that the developer didn’t properly clean up toxic land beneath the building. This is now the fourth block of units in Sydney that stand empty following structural safety concerns. NSW Greens MP David Shoebridge has described the properties currently in the news as “the tip of the iceberg.” As such, it remains high time for us to provide

26 09, 2019

I Want More Money, I Contributed More!

September 2019 | Ariza Arif “How do we work out our property split? What will I get? I put in [x] amount and I want it back!” “I have to look after the kids, I should get more money!” The above sentiments are very common when seeking an adjustment in a property settlement. The Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) sets out how a Court assesses and determines a result that is “just and equitable” – that is, fair. In

27 08, 2019

The Future of Your Family Trust

August 2019 | Jonathan Harris In New South Wales, a family trust can exist for a period of 80 years before the trust fund must be distributed to the beneficiaries and the trust wound up.  This is referred to by lawyers as the ‘perpetuity period’. Although we all hope to live longer than the perpetuity period most of us do not establish a family trust in our 20s. So unless your trust is wound up during your lifetime it

27 08, 2019

Who Is a Parent?

August 2019 | Ariza Arif The nuclear family structure has changed, shifted and diversified over recent years with the use of sperm donation and in vitro fertilisation (“IVF treatment”). In a previous article: “Can a child have more than two parents”, we discussed the decision in a recent case of Masson & Parsons & Ors [2018]. That case has now been considered further by the High Court of Australia (“the High Court”). Recap In 2006, Mr Parsons agreed to