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December 17, 2013

SA Identity verification compulsory compliance postponed

The South Australia Registrar-General has formally announced that the date for compulsory compliance with the Verification of Identity policy has been postponed to 1 April 2014 (Notice to Lodging parties number 171 dated 13 December 2013).

Background

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Posted 17th December 2013 by David Jacobson in Financial Services, Property

December 12, 2013

Leases from insolvent landlords at risk

In Willmott Growers Group Inc v Willmott Forests Limited (Receivers and Managers Appointed) (In Liquidation) [2013] HCA 51 the High Court decided that the liquidators of a lessor company had the power to disclaim the leases to investors under section 568(1)(f) of the Corporations Act 2001.

A majority of the High Court decided that the liabilities of the lessor (including its obligations to provide quiet enjoyment and not derogate from the grant of exclusive possession) would be terminated from the day on which the disclaimer takes effect, as would the correlative rights of the tenant. Each tenant's estate or interest in the land would be terminated.

The decision has implications for tenants who make substantial improvements to property over which they have a long-term lease or who borrow on the security of their lease: the solvency of their landlord is now a risk factor.

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Posted 12th December 2013 by David Jacobson in Corporations Act, Financial Services, Property, Risk Management

November 27, 2013

Changes to NSW Powers of Attorney

Powers of Attorney are an important financial management and planning tool.

The single General Power of Attorney (Financial) NSW form that was previously prescribed for general and enduring powers of attorney has been replaced with 2 separate forms:
• a general power of attorney - which ceases if the principal loses mental capacity; and
• an enduring power of attorney - which continues if the principal loses mental capacity.

The changes are in the Powers of Attorney Amendment Act 2013 No 23 and the Powers of Attorney Amendment Regulation 2013 (NSW). (Land and Property Information circular)

Use of the new form to create an enduring power of attorney will become mandatory in NSW from 1 March 2014: LPI will only accept enduring powers of attorney signed on or after 1 March 2014 if they are on the new form.

All powers of attorney (both general and enduring) signed on or before 28 February 2014 and general powers of attorney signed on or after 1 March 2014 will continue to be accepted for lodgement at LPI regardless of the form on which they are created.

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Posted 27th November 2013 by David Jacobson in Business Planning, Financial Services, Property

August 27, 2013

National Regulatory System for Community Housing starts testing

Phase One of the National Regulatory System for Community Housing (NRSCH) is currently in a six-month period of system testing and evaluation with 24 housing providers from across Australia selected to undergo the registration process.

Formal commencement is expected in January 2014.

Background

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Posted 27th August 2013 by David Jacobson in Deregulation, Not-for-profit sector, Property

August 5, 2013

South Australia Verification of Identity Policy for Mortgagees

South Australia has introduced a Verification of Identity Policy as part of its preparations for electronic conveyancing.

The policy has being introduced for documents executed on or after 1 July 2013 with a 6 month transitional period. Full compliance is required by 1 January 2014.

The SA Registrar-General's Notice to Lodging Parties and the Verification of Identity Policy requires mortgagees to take reasonable steps to verify the identity of each mortgagor at or before the mortgagor executes the mortgage unless the mortgagee has a face-to-face in-person interview with the mortgagor AND has verified the identity of that mortgagor in accordance with the policy in the previous 24 months.

Mortgagees will need to consider what changes are necessary to their systems, template documents, and procedures to prepare over the 6 month transitional period and be able to fully comply by 1 January 2014. Mortgagees without branch networks or that deal with customers in rural or remote areas will need to ensure appropriate arrangements are made with appropriate agents (such as Australia Post).

Our experience in working with clients with the implementation of similar verification of identity procedures recently in Western Australia has shown that the earlier mortgagees prepare for and implement any required changes the smoother the process is.

Langes+ can assist you with your preparations for the Verification of Identity policy. Contact Shannon Adams on (08) 8168 9601 or Joshua Annese on (08) 8168 9604.

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Posted 5th August 2013 by David Jacobson in Financial Services, Property, Web/Tech

August 31, 2012

National Regulatory System for Community Housing

The National Regulatory System for Community Housing (NRSCH) will be a national system of registration, monitoring and regulation of community housing providers.

The Community Housing (Adoption of National Law) Act 2012, which has been passed by the NSW State Parliament, provides uniform template legislation for the National Regulatory System.

Other participating jurisdictions will now pass legislation that applies the National Law or substantially corresponds to the National Law.

The new national regulatory system is due to commence nationally on 1 July 2013 with an 18 month transition period.

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Posted 31st August 2012 by admin in Business Planning, Corporate Governance, Property

April 27, 2010

Regulation of the Not-For-Profit (Community) Housing Sector

The Minister for Housing has released a Discussion Paper: Regulation and Growth of the Not-For-Profit Housing Sector.

This paper puts forward options for potential reforms of community housing in Australia and to seek input from the not-for-profit sector, investors, tenant groups, Indigenous community housing, developers and the business community into the formulation of clear policy direction to support the growth and sustainability of the community housing sector in Australia.

The paper contains a useful analysis of existing community housing regulation by jurisdiction and proposes 5 options for national regulation of the sector.

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Posted 27th April 2010 by David Jacobson in Financial Services, Property

April 26, 2010

Changes to rules for foreign investment in residential housing

The Assistant Treasurer, Senator Nick Sherry, has announced a tightening of the foreign investment rules as they relate to residential real estate and a package of new civil penalty, compliance, monitoring and enforcement measures.

Amendments are being proposed to the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act 1975, the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Regulations 1989 and Government Policy to ensure that foreign non-residents can only invest in Australian real estate if that investment adds to the housing stock, and that investments by temporary residents in established properties are only for their use whilst they live in Australia.

All temporary residents seeking to purchase an existing property in Australia will now be brought within the FIRB notification, screening and approval process. Temporary residents will be required to notify, be screened or be approved by FIRB in the same way currently required of foreign non-residents.

In addition, temporary residents who are approved will now have to:

  • compulsorily sell the established property they have bought when they depart Australia; and
  • be required, where undeveloped land has been purchased, to commence construction on that land within 24-months or have the land compulsorily sold.

These changes will also be strictly applied to temporary residents who are here on foreign student visas.

As part of a new civil penalties regime, the Government will introduce:

  • sanctions for purchasers, sellers and agents for being involved in transactions in breach of FATA;
  • an explicit compulsory divestment requirement where property has been purchased in breach of the real estate investment regime; and
  • an additional monetary penalty equivalent to any capital gain made by the breaching purchaser at the time of the forced sale, with the capital gain to be measured in accordance with the relevant tax legislation.

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Posted 26th April 2010 by David Jacobson in Business Planning, Investments, Property

June 5, 2009

SA Lands Titles Office (LTO) News

Mortgage Stamp Duty

Stamp duty on mortgages in South Australia will be abolished from 1 July 2009. This will apply to all new loans and further advances that are funded after 1 July 2009. Initially it seems that it will still be necessary for Mortgages to be stamped prior to registration with the SA LTO and 'upstamped' as part of a further advance however no Stamp Duty will be payable.

Changes to Advertising Requirements for Lost CT's

Recent amendments to the procedure for obtaining a substituted South Australian Certificate of Title to replace a lost or destroyed CT have removed the necessity to advertise the loss in certain circumstances. Previously a lost CT had to be advertised both in South Australia and interstate (if the CT was lost interstate) before an application for a substituted CT could be made. The advertising exemption will only apply to ADI's who are the first registered mortgagee and have lost the CT 'in-house'. If you have lost a South Australian CT and would like to check whether or not this exemption applies to you or if you require assisstance in making an application for a South Australian substituted CT please contact Joshua Annese on (08) 8168 9604.

LTO Registration fee rise

As of 1 July 2009 the registration fees for most documents requiring registration with the SA LTO have increased. The fee for registering a Mortgage or Discharge of Mortgage has risen from $112.00 to $117.00. These fees do not attract GST. Further information regarding registration fees for other documents at the South Australian LTO can be found here.

From Josh Annese in our Adelaide office

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Posted 5th June 2009 by David Jacobson in Property