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Property Law

The Property Law Committee actively monitors all matters relating to or associated with property law and provides the following resources for solicitors.

Contract for the Sale and Purchase of Land - 2016/17 Edition

Contract for the Sale and Purchase of Land - 2016 Edition

Use of the 2005 edition of the Contract for Sale of Land or the 2014 edition of the Contract for the Sale and Purchase of Land


The Law Society of NSW does not recommend using the 2005 edition of the Contract for Sale of Land or the 2014 edition of the Contract for the Sale and Purchase of Land, where contracts might be exchanged on or after 1 July 2016 - unless the sale price is below $2 million.

If the contract might be exchanged on or after 1 July 2016, and the sale price may reach $2 million or more, you should use the 2016 edition of the Contract and not earlier editions, unless you have your own special condition to address the Foreign Resident Capital Gains Withholding Payments measure (“measure”).

The Commonwealth’s new measure commences on 1 July 2016, under new sub-division 14D, of Schedule 1 to the Taxation Administration Act 1953 (Cth). Under the measure, where the market value of the property is $2 million or more, the purchaser is obliged to comply with a foreign resident capital gains withholding payment obligation (even if the vendor is not a foreign resident), unless the vendor supplies a clearance certificate from the Australian Taxation Office. In broad terms, where the withholding payment obligation applies, the purchaser is required to withhold 10% of the price at settlement and remit this to the Australian Taxation Office.

The 2005 and 2014 editions do not address the requirements of this new measure. These editions do not make the contractual obligation to pay the balance of purchase money to the vendor on completion subject to any withholding obligation.

For further information on the measure, please see the Australian Tax Office website at http://ato.gov.au/FRCGW

If you are considering using the 2005 edition or 2014 edition, you should also consider whether any of the other updates and changes made in the 2016 edition might benefit your vendor client. For example, where a certificate of non-compliance under the Swimming Pools Act 1992 will be attached to the Contract, the revised definition of “work order” in the 2016 edition will likely be of benefit to your vendor client. Information about changes made in the 2014 and 2016 editions is available on the Property Law Committee's page of the Law Society’s website and the ECOS portal. Links to both sites are available at www.lawsociety.com.au

Copyright guidelines

Copyright guidelines for the contract for sale of land

Electronic Conveyancing

A separate Electronic Conveyancing webpage has been established with a number of resources for practitioners.

Protocols and guidelines

Property guides

Two free online guides on buying and selling a residential property in NSW. These publications also highlight how a solicitor will guide their clients through each stage of the process.

Guide to Buying a PropertyGuide to Selling a Property

Residential Conveyancing Protocol

Residential conveyancing protocol for solicitors and real estate agents

Mortgage discharge documents and Settlement Bookings

ANZ Discharge and Settlements Process:  www.anz.com/settle.

CBA Instructions on Completion and Dispatch of Discharge Authority

Macquarie Mortgages Residential Loan Discharge Process

St.George Bank's Residential Loan Discharge Process

Conveyancing Dispute Resolution Scheme

The Property Law Committee is available to adjudicate on certain conveyancing disputes and provide the parties with a binding determination.

For more information on this impartial and authoritative alternative to litigation or arbitration, visit the Conveyancing Dispute Resolution Scheme.

Law Society Lease

Article by Dennis Bluth and Michelle Wong

NSW Stamp Duty

Consult the online calculator at www.osr.nsw.gov.au.