Published 20th May 2020 by Rebecca Neilson, Cruickshank Pryde
Not a ‘gift’, there are employer obligations
Many New Zealand employers are scrambling to maintain solvency while balancing their employer obligations during the COVID-19 lockdown; thousands of businesses accepted the government’s COVID-19 12-week wage subsidy as a necessary lifeline. The subsidy was not, however, a gift. We take a closer look at employers’ obligations when accepting the wage subsidy.
Published 19th May 2020 by Sam Hood & Jesse Savage, Norris Ward McKinnon
COVID-19 can be ‘frustrating’
COVID-19, and the restrictions imposed by the government in an attempt to control it, have deeply affected our lives. However, it’s not just our social lives that have become frustrated. Some businesses and individuals have found themselves party to a contract they can no longer perform due to COVID-19 and the government restrictions. Whether it is an event scheduled during a lockdown that can no longer be held, a customer who you can no longer supply or transport goods to due to travel or border restrictions, or a service you can no longer provide, the ‘doctrine of frustration’ may be able to help.
Published 1st May 2020 by Neil Dent, Gifford Devine
Agriculture continues to be the mainstay of our economy
The COVID-19 virus that is sweeping the world will impact upon us all and pretty much everybody in the world one way or another. The repercussions will differ depending on where you live, what age you are and what you do, but it will be there nonetheless.
Published 1st May 2020 by Neil Dent, Gifford Devine
What if I can’t get on the land in an extraordinary situation?
As a result of the COVID-19 Alert Level 4 situation, one of the issues that has arisen in the commercial leasing area is that of tenants being unable to access their leased buildings. These tenants are in non-essential industries and are therefore prohibited from working, other than from home. This affects commercial leases right across the spectrum from hospitality, retail, office to warehousing.
Published 24th March 2020 by Margaret Matthew, Rennie Cox
Company structure or sole trader for business?
You have decided to quit your job, and go out on your own to run your own business. Do you form a company or trade in your own name? We outline some of the pros and cons of these two options to help you make a decision.
Published 20th March 2020 by Bayley Roylance, RMY Legal
Helps mitigate risk
There has been recent media attention on the way property development contracts are structured following the cancellation of a number of Agreements for Sale and Purchase by the developers of a project in Tawa, just north of Wellington. Reportedly, the developers said that without being able to cancel the existing agreements, the companies establishing the development would have otherwise faced liquidation and the development would have been halted.
Published 20th March 2020 by Andrew Bright, RMY Legal
10th edition contains significant changes for buyers and sellers
The Auckland District Law Society and the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (ADLS & REINZ) are the authors of the most common template Agreement for Sale and Purchase that is used by the majority of lawyers and real estate agents throughout New Zealand. In November 2019, ADLS & REINZ released the 10th edition of the agreement with changes that impact and benefit both buyers and sellers.
Published 20th February 2020 by Colette Mackenzie, Greg Kelly Law Ltd
Law Commission to review conflicting inheritance laws
In late 2019 the Law Commission reported back to the government on its review of the Property (Relationships) Act 1976 (PRA). Discussion on Part 8 of the PRA that deals with the division of relationship property on the death of a spouse or partner was specifically excluded from the scope of that review.
Acknowledging the issues that could arise by not addressing the division of property when a spouse/partner dies, in December last year the government asked the Law Commission to review the law of succession – that is, the law that governs who inherits a person’s property when they die.
Published 20th February 2020 by Chris Kelly, Greg Kelly Law Ltd
How many people should you name as attorneys?
In previous articles in Trust eSpeaking, we have explained why it is important to have an enduring power of attorney (EPA) and the problems that can be created if you do not have one when the need arises. You should have two EPAs – one for property, and the other for personal care and welfare.
In your EPA, you should also take care to name appropriate people as your attorneys. Ideally you should name two people to manage your property, which also includes your finances and investments.
Published 20th February 2020 by Kimberly Lawrence, Greg Kelly Law Ltd
How much can a disinherited child expect?
The Family Protection Act 1955 allows children to bring claims against the estate of a deceased parent on the basis that their parent did not adequately provide for their ‘proper maintenance and support’. Exactly what constitutes ‘proper maintenance and support’ is the subject of considerable litigation, as well as extensive commentary in the media.
Since a trio of Court of Appeal decisions in the early 2000s, a general understanding has emerged that awards under the family protection legislation can be quantified by referring to a percentage of the relevant estate. It has long been said that a financially-stable adult child might expect to receive between 10%–20% of the estate of their deceased parent, depending on a number of factors including the size of the estate and the position of others under the will or those people who are entitled to make a claim. In many cases, the 10%–20% threshold has become an informal benchmark when assessing the position of a financially-stable adult child making a claim against a modest, but not insignificant, estate.