Will it be right?

1 March, 2018

Mistakes in the preparation of wills can be avoided with careful proofreading. In the 2016-17 policy year, wills and estates claims accounted for 11.7 per cent of the total cost of claims and 8.4 per cent of the total number. In the previous 10-year period, these figures were 6.8 per cent and 3.2 per cent […]

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Stay on the estate

1 June, 2017

Practitioners handling estate matters should not get involved in family disputes. As disputes between family members arise frequently in estate matters, practitioners need to be alert to their duties to executors and beneficiaries as well as potential conflicts of interest. LPLC has received claims where practitioners handling an estate were not proactive in distancing themselves […]

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Ticking the box

1 March, 2017

There are many benefits to developing and using checklists.  They provide a framework for good supervision, they quality assure work and they provide good staff development. Whether you are a transactional lawyer or a litigation lawyer, the current legal environment is more complex and fast paced than ever. Whether doing high level legal thinking or […]

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In the conflict zone

8 October, 2013

Practitioners need to be wary when preparing wills for couples. During the past five years around 70 per cent of LPLC’s cost of claims involving a conflict of interest (when defined as representing more than one party or interest in a matter) emanated from sole practitioners or two-partner firms. Wills and estates can be prime […]

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Is your client really willing?

28 April, 2013

Practitioners need to be mindful of capacity when preparing wills. An awkward moment for many legal practitioners is being asked to prepare a will by a client of doubtful testamentary capacity. Most, if not all, practitioners in this area will be broadly aware of the issue of testamentary capacity, but some may not appreciate they […]

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A matter of trust

28 March, 2012

Practitioners need to be clear about purpose when holding trust money Practitioners know that trust money is not their property, nor is it held for their benefit. However, practitioners should be wary of any misconception that trust money is necessarily held on their client’s behalf, even if the funds were paid by the client. It depends on the terms of the […]

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Where there’s a will there’s affray

2 October, 2011

The drafting of wills for composite families can be complex and full of traps. Practitioners need to canvass all issues with the will-maker. Most claims in wills and estates that relate to drafting errors involve will-makers who have been married more than once. It seems that the number of composite families and couples who have been […]

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Looking for trouble

1 December, 2010

Simple searches are an easy way for practitioners to avoid trouble later. Three recent claims have highlighted the benefits of practitioners obtaining up-to-date company or title searches at various critical moments. Company searches before issuing proceedings Remember the value in doing company searches of your clients, particularly in litigation. In the first case, a practitioner […]

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