Weekly Snapshot Issue No: 12 – 18 January 2019

Case we’re discussing…

Fisher v Fisher [2007] NSWSC 1526

In this case, Justice Windeyer discusses the construction of Wills and the concept of substitution – often used in the situation whereby the testator provides that if the children do not survive, then the  grandchildren take by substitution the share which his or her parents would otherwise have taken.

Interestingly, in this case the testator had four sons. She executed her Will in 2000 and died in 2006. The Will included a standard substitution clause. One of her sons passed away in 1984. His two children were the defendants in this action.

Ultimately, the Supreme Court found that the grandchildren were not eligible as clause 3 (the substitution clause) did not provide anything for the deceased son and therefore there are no funds for his children to take by way of substitution. Justice Windeyer found that “under that will the estate was given to the three sons then surviving, in other words, not including Edmund (the deceased son)”.

Whether this was a true reflection of the testator’s intentions will obviously remain unknown however it is a great reminder that proper drafting of Wills is crucial. As diligent lawyers, we take it upon ourselves to ask the Testator for a complete background to anticipate such issues and allow the testator to fully clarify their wishes in the Will.

Read the case here: https://www.jade.io/article/60852?at.hl=probate+estate

Website we are shamelessly plugging…

www.censeolegal.com.au has gone live folks! – visit, navigate and recommend. All feedback is welcome.

Article we’re reading…

Growing up, mum had forbade artificial plants in the home. She believed that they did little to bring about the benefits of living greenery and basically collected dust and cluttered the home. Simply put, they were lifeless.

We recently came across this timely article “Now Christmas is over, what on earth should you do with the tree” – in which the author promotes the use of living or cut trees and offers a number of recycling options; from crafting a piece of jewellery to creating mulch. Most interestingly, the author delves into the concept of “biophilia” which is the belief that the presence of natural living things – and even objects made from natural things like wood has been demonstrated to improve physiological and psychological well being.

World first Australian research into the subject touts the benefits of biophilic elements in workplace and home design; from improved mood and personal productivity to even an increase in property prices.

Guess mothers always know best.

Read more here: https://theconversation.com/now-christmas-is-done-what-on-earth-should-you-do-with-the-tree-108756

Idea we are discussing…

As we enter this New Year, we are again encouraged to set New Year resolutions. You know New Year, New Me (Just go shopping and you’ll see the consumerism behind this concept- gym gear is EVERYWHERE).

We were intrigued to question the origin of this concept and so we did what all respectful academics do and we googled it- voila Wikipedia. According to the indisputable knowledge of Wikipedia, the concept of the New Year’s resolution has religious origins and can be traced right back to Babylonian times. Babylonians made promises to their gods at the start of each year that they would return borrowed objects and pay their debts.

This concept was also used amongst the Romans; during the medieval era, amongst Christians and Jew’s alike – right up to the modern day. The only thing that has changed really is that where the knights of the Medieval era reaffirmed their commitment to chivalry and Jews reflected upon one’s wrongdoings and sought or offered forgiveness, we pledge to stop overindulging in burgers, Instagram and secret bitching sessions. The evolution of human kind is real.

Life advice we are contemplating…

Following on from the above, the concept of the New Year’s Resolution, regardless of creed, is to reflect upon self- improvement annually. But we say why wait another 365 days (let’s face it we have already broken a few). Instead of having a New Year’s Resolution here is a resolution for every morning of the New Year:

I will this day try to live a simple, sincere and serene life repelling promptly every thought of discontent, anxiety, discouragement, impurity and self- seeking cultivating cheerfulness magnanimity, charity and the habit of holy silence exercising economy in expenditure, carefulness in conversation, diligence in appointed service, fidelity to every trust and a childlike trust in God’.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *