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Online Consultations - you don’t have to come in

As an additional service to all our clients, you are able to consult with all of our lawyers online, using WhatsApp or Skype. If you need help with setting these up we can guide you through the process by phone.  All you have to do is phone us to book an online appointment.

When a personal consultation is required, we will use our (new) conference table, to maintain personal distancing.

Also, of course, you can contact Philip direct on 0418 305 700, any time during our national crisis.

Company Director Scam

ABC Radio National recently aired a piece by investigative reporter Dan Oakes about the unsuspecting people, including homeless persons, being signed up as directors of companies they had never even heard of.

Oakes spoke to a gentleman called Rod who was registered as a director of 26 companies. It turns out he agreed to sign up for one company directorship, but all the others he was unaware of. Rod is caught up in a massive tax avoidance scheme.

Rod one day agreed to be the director of a company, as a favour to the accountants who were doing his taxes, Brown Baldwin. But they then signed him up for another 25 companies, he says, without his knowledge. It is supposed this was done to shield the people who really controlled them from the Tax Office and their creditors.

The scheme involved creating a company with a dummy director, which then racked up all expenses on that company’s account, pretending to pay staff through that shell company, then conveniently forgetting to pay income on tax on their wages. 

If you are asked to be a Director of any company, please talk to Philip or Jacelyn at our office first.

Your Super and Binding Death Benefit Nominations (BDBN’s)

Super is a curious beast, having several significant advantages over other classes of assets.  Firstly, it has a very high level of protection from creditors (although not from the Family Court) and because of that status, one can not only safely accrue funds in it, but also direct how those funds are to be paid, by a Binding Death Benefit Nomination (BDBN).  One classic example of this, we saw some years ago was its use by an accountant whose estate was insolvent when he died.  If he had directed that his super be paid to his estate (via his personal representative), his beneficiary wife may have received nothing.  However, he was smart enough to make his wife the nominated beneficiary of his super and his wife received over $1 million.

If you have any concerns about how to structure your super or BDBN, please call Amanda Tomlinson at our office to discuss it.

New Witnessing Requirements

The Natural Resources and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2019 was recently amended to require additional ID for those witnessing any document that is to be lodged in the Titles Registry in Queensland. Two leading requirements are (1) to take reasonable steps to verify the identity of the person signing (100 points) and (2) for the witness to ensure the individual is entitled to sign.

We have lawyers, notaries and qualified witnesses on staff to assist our clients at anytime with all aspects of Titles Office procedure and International witnessing of documents.

Virtues of Discretionary Family trusts (DFT’s)

DFT’s are utilised in most common law jurisdictions throughout the world, for a variety of lawful purposes.

One of their benefits in Australia is, of course, tax minimisation, but they are also commonly used for asset production and for estate planning.

Once a trust is given ownership of real estate, for example, if that asset(s) is to be utilised by  a class of people (such as a family or interest group) then control (let’s call that virtual ownership) of the asset(s) may be changed as much as required, without attracting stamp duty.

They can also be used to form part of your will if you need to protect the inheritance of a beneficiary who has special needs or who may be facing bankruptcy or divorce.

If any of those virtues are required by you, please make an appointment with either Philip, Amanda or Jacelyn at our office to discuss the options available to you.


Survival Tip

If you have a mortgage, then consider applying to convert it to interest only for two years.  If the remaining term of your mortgage is too short, apply to extend that as well.
‘The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself’ – Franklin D. Roosevelt


Please remember we are all in this boat together, so helping one another is also helping ourselves.
Contact RobertsLaw on:
Ph: 07 5530 5700
Suite 8, 60 Railway Street, Mudgeeraba QLD 4213
Individual liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.

Copyright © 2020 Robertslaw Pty Ltd, All rights reserved.

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