• Facebook introduces new Legacy Contact feature

    Often a person’s online presence/reputation is one of their most valuable assets, yet there are insufficient guidance/procedures for a deceased person’s online accounts to be managed after death. There is no uniform law in relation to online accounts, and each individual website/organisation will have its own requirements for passing control of such accounts, if any exist.

  • Victorian Grant of Representation is a necessary prerequisite to Part IV claim

    The recent decision of the Victorian Supreme Court in O’Brien v Hall [2015] VSC 52 confirms that a Victorian Grant of Representation must exist before Part IV proceedings can be issued. Without a Grant, the proceeding is a nullity, and may be summarily dismissed.

    Prior to this there had been no previous Victorian authority on whether or not a Part IV application could be issued prior to a Grant, and there were conflicting authorities from other jurisdictions.

  • Unsuccessful Part IV application to substitute trustees of estate, potential costs consequences for legal representatives

    The recent decision of McDonald J in Gibb v Gibb [2015] VSC 35is a reminder to legal practitioners about the importance of complying with the Civil Procedure Act 2010 in ensuring that any claim has a proper basis, on the factual and legal material available, before issuing Court proceedings, particularly in small estates.   

  • Successful Part IV claim by adult stepson; unsuccessful Part IV claim by partner

    In the case of Szarvas v Tizzano; Muller v Tizzano [2014] VSC 620, the deceased died without a Will, leaving two adult daughters, a stepson, and a partner, Zsuzsanna, who did not qualify as a domestic partner under the intestacy provisions. The two adult daughters were equal beneficiaries under the intestacy provisions.

  • Can You Reverse a Care Order?

    A Court will not likely entertain an application to reverse an earlier care order.

    The Family Court says there is mischief in so doing, as to do so would invite endless litigation for change.

  • Childbirth maintenance - an often overlooked section of the Family Law Act

    It is not widely known that the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) (“the Act”) makes provision for a Mother to claim ‘childbirth maintenance’ if she and the Father of the child are not living together in the period leading up to the birth of the child.

    The relevant law for child-bearing expenses is set out under section 67B of the Act, which provides that the Father of a child who is not married to the child’s Mother can be liable to contribute towards:

  • Tips for surviving Christmas festivities in the workplace

    It is easy to forget in the festive time of year that employer sponsored Christmas and end of year parties are still work related activities, and that means these functions need to be treated as if they were a normal workplace.  Importantly, this can apply notwithstanding the official function is over and staff have left the venue for another place to continue celebrating.

  • Federal Government announces results of 2014 Aged Care Approvals Round (ACAR)

    The Federal Government has today announced the results of the 2014 Aged Care Approvals Round.

    The Department of Social Services has advised that a total of 17,849 new aged care places were allocated across Australia (consisting of 11,196 residential aged care places and 6,653 home care places) which are estimated to have an annual funding value of over $833.6 million.

  • Coaching Contracts or Employment? No Easy Answer in Sport - Part 2

    And so how might an employment relationship make a difference on the AFL stage? There has been a lot of movement in the coaching fraternity of late, and even in the past 12 months we’ve seen contracts used to prevent moves.

    Would the Swans have been better off if Stewart Dew wanted to leave his contract early as an employee to coach for Melbourne than they were having him on a contract? Legally, no, although they did use his contract to prevent that move.

  • Coaching Contracts or Employment? No Easy Answer in Sport - Part 1

    Recent debate has focused on whether AFL coaches ought to be on a fixed term contract or in a permanent employment relationship. The club’s desire to lock in a top coach, but without knowing whether they will deliver this season or the next, is part of the complexity, as is the coach’s need to make the most of a limited professional opportunity to coach a top club, and build their long term reputation.