Glossary

Conveyancing:

What is conveyancing?

It is the process of changing ownership on the legal title of land to the new owners of the land purchased.

Why is it needed?

When purchasing land complex issues may arise. A lawyer is able to make the process less stressful. They can make the necessary title searches, prepare the documents for lodgement and calculate the adjustment of rates and taxes. They can negotiate on your behalf which eliminates stress and emotion out of negotiations.

Wills:

What is a Will?

A will is a document which permits an individual to make decisions on how their estate will be distributed after their death.

Who can make a will?

Anyone above the age of 18 who has the mental capacity is able to make a will.

What happens if there is no will?

If an individual has died without a Will they are said to die “intestate”. The Administration and Probate Act 1958 (Vic) sets out the law surrounding intestacy. The Act contains a formula which sets out how the estate of the deceased will be distributed.

Revision of Will

It is vital that your will is revised, as individuals circumstances may change, for example Divorce.

If you have separated from a spouse (not divorced) it does not affect the will.

Executor of an estate

You may choose to appoint an Executor of your will. This means that they have been appointed to deal with your estate after you die.

Roles

  • Attending to funeral arrangements
  • Identifying beneficiaries
  • Allocating the estate in accordance to the deceased wishes
  • Informing financial and other relevant institutions of the deceased’s death
  • Acting impartially between the beneficiaries

Why create a Will?

  • Gives you the power to allocate your estate according to your wishes
  • Avoid any confusion after you die
  • This can eliminate children, spouse, step children, siblings, charities or anyone you deem important to ensure that they receive what was intended by your will

Probate

Once the individual has passed away leaving a will and assets registered in their name, a grant of probate will generally need to be obtained from the Registrar of Probates in the Supreme Court.

A grant of probate is a court order confirming the validity of the deceased’s will and the appointed executor.

What if there was no will or no executor?

If the deceased has not left a will or there was a will and there is no executor, an application for letters of administration will need to be made to the Registry of Probates in the Supreme Court.

Sale of Business/purchase of Business

Sale of Business

It involves an exchange of money or value for either a transfer of the ownership of a good or property or entitlement to a service.

Purchase of business

The act of a company purchasing the goods and services that is needed in order to operate their business.

Litigation

It is the process of settling a dispute between two or more parties in a court of law.

Parties commencing action are usually seeking economic damages or specific performance.

Usually, litigation will commence where the Plaintiff or Defendant resides.

Steps:

  1. A party will file an originating process with the relevant court;
  2. The originating process must then be served on the other party;
  3. The other party (depending on the state & court) will have a mandatory period to file a defence;
  4. If a defence is filed this will be served on the plaintiff and proceed through the court process to a final hearing (unless settled earlier);
  5. Should no defence be filed, the Plaintiff may seek an order for default judgment and proceed with enforcement of the judgment through the court.

Dispute resolution

Dispute resolution is alternative path that an individual may seek in order to resolve a dispute. Dispute resolution is a way of resolving dispute without attending court.

These can be:

  • Mediation – when there is an impartial third person who helps in the negotiations between the parties involved in the dispute
  • Conciliation – this is where an impartial third person may provide assistance and advice in order for the parties to reach an agreement. The conciliator in this instance usually has some expertise of the matter.
  • Arbitration – this is formal process whereby the arbitrator makes an independent judgment based on the matter which the parties are bound to.
  • Facilitation – this is similar to mediation however it is used for groups that are in dispute, for example body corporate.

Commercial & Residential Leasing

A commercial lease is a contract between a landlord and a business who will be renting the property. Commercial leases are more complicated than residential as the terms are negotiable and may vary from lease to lease.

A residential lease is a contractual agreement between a landlord and tenant and contains all the terms for renting the property.

Commercial/Corporate Law

Commercial law are the legal rules that determine the rights and obligations of parties who are engaged in trade and commerce.

Corporate law regulates the rights, relations and conduct of persons, companies and organisations.

Employment Law

Employment law governs and regulates the relationship between employer and employee.

A person may seek advice on:

  • Unfair dismissal;
  • Discrimination – for example, gender, race, colour, age, mental or physical disability, marital status, political views, religion, sex, sexual orientation etc; or
  • Unlawful termination.