Testamentary Trusts Explained

General Overview A testamentary trust is simply a trust that is created by a taxpayer’s Will which does not come into effect until the taxpayer dies. A testamentary trust is like any other ordinary “inter vivos” trust, the only difference being that it is created under a Will rather than by a living person. The terms of a testamentary trust are set out in the Will. Whilst a testamentary trust…

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Vicarious Liability and Illegal Acts

What is Vicarious Liability? Vicarious liability is a legal doctrine by which one person is liable for the act of another person.  The most common example is an employer being liable for the act of an employee in the course of his or her employment. When will an employer be liable for the act of an employee? An employer will generally be liable for the acts of an employee which…

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General Damages & Thresholds

What are general damages? General damage is compensation for pain and suffering, diminished quality of life and loss of life expectancy. How are general damages calculated? There is no fixed method of calculation.  Each case is individually assessed by the Judge hearing the case. What is a threshold? A threshold is a no go zone in which the claimant receives nothing for general damages.  Compensation is only paid something for…

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What is a Discretionary Trust?

What is a trust? A trust is a legal obligation or arrangement by which a person, known as the trustee, uses his or her legal position as trustee to benefit the “objects” of the trust.  The objects are referred to by most people as the “beneficiaries”.  The trustee is like Santa Claus and he can distribute presents to whoever he chooses as long as they are one of the beneficiaries…

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Collecting Debts and Resolving Disputes

A common problem that tradespersons encounter with home owners and builders is non-payment for completed work. The collection process always begins before the work commences by completing contracts and confirming in writing any variations. It is equally important to document or record attempts to recover payment after the work is done and follow up promptly. However, what are the options if the client just won’t pay? Resolution The fact is…

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Product Safety & Consumer Law

The Competition and Consumer Act 2010, also known as the Australian Consumer Law (“ACL”) came into effect on 1 January 2011. The ACL deals with various aspects of the relationship between a consumer of goods or services and providers of goods or services. One of the significant issues introduced by ACL was a nationally consistent system to regulate the safety of consumer goods and product related services. Who is a…

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