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Having your cake and eating it too?

Will-making in the context of blended families can entail complicated balancing acts as will-makers attempt to address the needs and expectations of children born to an earlier spouse or partner as well as the needs and expectations of a subsequent spouse or partner. Add a trust into the mix and asset and estate planning that might have been presumed … Continue reading

My trust and me

Previous blogs have talked about the dangers of failing to differentiate between  trust and the trust’s settlor (or some other “related” party).  This is also the case when it comes to recognising who is entitled to deductions for trust expenditure. A TRA (Taxation Review Authority) decision, since upheld on appeal to the High Court (see Brown … Continue reading

Review of the Law of Trusts

It has been a long time in the making.  Today (11 September) the Law Commission’s Report, Review of the Law of Trusts: A Trusts Act for New Zealand, was tabled in Parliament. The Report recommends the introduction of a new Trusts Act to replace the current Trustee Act 1956. The proposed new Trusts Act will be … Continue reading

Increased Charities Reporting

New auditing and review requirements have been announced that will apply to charities with annual exenditure of $500,000 or more. Currently all registered charities are required to attach financial statements to their annual returns.  New requirements announced this week will provide that charities with annual expenditure of $500,000 or more will need to have their financial statements reviewed … Continue reading

Costs award for failing to provide information

The decision in Roberts v Francis further highlights the need to respond to beneficiaries’ information requests in a timely fashion.  The background facts can be summarised as follows: Dr Roberts died intestate His wife obtained letters of administration The beneficiairies of his estate, as determined by the Administration Act were his wife and his children … Continue reading

Residential Care Subsidy Appeal lost

Commentators and advisers have been divided regarding whether or not gifts made by couples are aggregated for residential care subsidy purposes.  A decision by the High Court that gifts are aggregated, has now been up-held by the Court of Appeal.  So what does this mean?  Simply, for a person with a spouse or partner, gifts … Continue reading