Posts

In this age of technology, money is being transferred electronically on a daily basis.  We pay our bills, we transfer money to our friends for dinner and we help out our family.  More and more, this is happening by way of electronic funds transfer.

Most of us are incredibly diligent in double and triple checking that we are sending money to the right account, however we are also human, and accidents happen.  So what happens if your fingers slip and you transfer money to the wrong account?

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When parties separate, a very common question is, who moves out of the family home?  Another common question is, my friends have told me I need to stay in the house, is that true?

In reality, nobody actually has to move out of the family home for separation to have occurred.  It is entirely possible to be separated and living under the one roof and this is quite a common occurrence.  Sometimes it is not possible for one party to move out of the family home because of a variety of reasons, financial reasons being prime among them.  You generally cannot force the other party to move out, nor can the other party force you to move out – this is so even if one party solely owns the family home.

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Christmas is an exciting time of year, one filled with love and laughter, but also quite a hectic time of year getting presents ready for family.

Finishing off jobs at work can cause emotions to rise and the stress that comes with it. So can you imagine what would happen in the event that your work involved not only ensuring that everything was done by the strict deadline of Christmas, but also fulfilling the wishes of billions of people around the world?

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It’s in our nature to look out for our loved ones and one of the most valuable assets you will ever ‘own’ is your education.

So it’s not surprising that we receive a number of calls from people wishing to somehow pay for the future expenses of their child or grandchild’s education, in the event of their passing.

Unlike cash, cars or material ‘things’, the gift of education is one that could make a profound difference in your grandchild’s life.

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With school holidays coming up, it can be a difficult time for separated families to agree upon and juggle arrangements in relation to their children and what time they will spend with each parent.

Unfortunately for those families the tension and stress associated with making this decision can add to making the process more difficult.

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There’s good news for investors nervous about purchasing property ‘off-the-plan’. Recent changes to NSW property laws will make it harder for unscrupulous developers to back out of off-the-plan contracts for residential property.

What are off-the-plan contracts?

An off-the-plan contract is a contract to buy a property which has not yet been created.  That property may be vacant land to be created on registration of a plan of subdivision (e.g., the Shearwater Landing development at Greenhills Beach), an apartment to be constructed and created on registration of a strata plan (eg. the Woolooware Bay apartments) or anything in between.

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Christmas is that wonderful time of the year when we shower our loved ones in gifts to celebrate the festive season. While it’s a joyous time for both those who are giving and receiving its important to forward think and know the ramifications associated with gifts in a Family Law and Estate Planning context, particularly substantial monetary gifts.

Let’s imagine Mr and Mrs Claus want to give one of their elves $100,000 to help he and his new elf girlfriend buy a new pad in the North Pole. It’d be important that Mr and Mrs Claus to be wary of whether they are giving the $100,000 to their elf or to both he and his girlfriend and also whether it is it in fact a gift or a loan?

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People often talk about going through a ‘messy divorce’, when in fact, obtaining a divorce is the easiest part of separation. Are you considering getting a divorce and wondering what the process will be like?

Married couples in Australia can apply for divorce if their marriage has broken down irretrievably. To apply for an Application for Divorce the parties need to be separated for a period of at least 12 months; and

• One of the parties must regard Australia as their home and intend to live in Australia indefinitely or

• be an Australian citizen by birth, descent or grant of Australian Citizenship, or

• have lived in Australia and have done so for 12 months immediately before filing the divorce.

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Australians are known to love property as an investment vehicle. Generally this has been achieved by borrowing from a bank to purchase property before paying it off over time. Since 2007 self managed superannuation funds (SMSF) have been allowed to borrow money to acquire property, which has seen a large increase in the amount of SMSFs and the amount of property owned by SMSFs.

What is a SMSF?

A SMSF is a superannuation fund that has four (4) or fewer members and is an alternative to retail and employer sponsored superannuation funds. In a SMSF, the members (who are subject to strict rules) have control over the superannuation fund, its investments and decisions.

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Homemade Wills are a curse” – This was the opening remark in a recent judgment of an Australian Will dispute case…

At Southern Waters Legal we agree! Unfortunately we see first hand the expensive mess left behind when people attempt a DIY Will. Homemade Wills often cause significant delays in beneficiaries receiving their inheritance, drawn out expensive litigation and family disputes.

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