[Summer 2012] With the abolition of gift duty in New Zealand (from 1 October 2011) business people who have family trusts have the opportunity to forgive all debt owed by the trust to them. Essentially it is now possible to make gifts of unlimited value without incurring a duty on them. This allows for a… Read More.

[Winter 2012] As farmland becomes more expensive and rental returns from leasing increase, farm leasing is becoming more attractive and prevalent. Farm owners looking to retire or work less now see leasing as a viable alternative to sale. Leasing provides a fixed income and protection against the inevitable fluctuations in return in the farming sector.… Read More.

[Winter 2012] It is worthwhile reviewing the risks of defamation in the electronic age, as some people have the misconception that the rules of defamation don’t apply to the internet. Another common misconception is that defamation is only relevant to the rich and famous and need not concern ordinary folk. By way of general background… Read More.

[Winter 2012] Good governance must include legal compliance, business competence and ethical standards. The prosecution of directors for their part in finance company collapses has highlighted these essentials. The key question with all board decision-making is not what can be done? but what should be done? Corporate governance involves a set of relationships between a… Read More.

[Winter 2012] Common sense says that before you sign a contract, you should read it and make sure you understand what you are signing. You may be surprised to learn how infrequently this happens. This is especially so when the contracting parties have an established trading relationship. In a High Court case in Palmerston North,… Read More.

[Spring 2012] Credit and debt control is increasingly important for businesses in these hard economic times. Unfortunately, there are just some people who either refuse to pay or are unable to pay for goods or services they use. However, businesses need not necessarily ‘write off’ bad debts or put them down to ‘experience’. This article… Read More.

[Spring 2012] The Employment Relations Act 2000 provides the test for whether an employer’s actions in dealing with an employee are justified or not (section 103A). The test was amended in 2011 to require an assessment of whether the actions were what a fair and reasonable employer ‘could’ do, rather than what a fair and… Read More.

[Spring 2010] It's a familiar refrain - lawyers asking that their clients let them see the agreement for the sale or purchase of their house or other land and buildings before the agreement is signed so they can advise on the transaction and the 'fine print'. Now though, sellers might be wise to get their lawyers involved… Read More.