Binding Nomination Made Under Power of Attorney – some answers

Can a superannuation fund accept a binding death benefit nomination executed under a power of attorney?  This is a question funds have been asking for a long time.  Finally, we have some answers. On 24 August 2018, the Supreme Court of Queensland considered this question in depth in Re Narumon Pty Ltd [2018] QSC 185. …

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Mercer v Billinghurst: Some lessons for trustees

Last week, the Full Court of the Federal Court handed down judgement in Mercer Superannuation (Australia) Limited v Billinghurst.[1]  Greenfields acted for Mr Billinghurst.  This was the third decision against the trustee (following the determination of the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal[2] (SCT) and the judgment of Moshinsky J in first instance[3]). Mr Billinghurst was a retired…

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Interim Report: Financial System External Dispute Resolution Framework

The Interim Report on the Review of the financial system external dispute resolution framework was released yesterday (6 December). The Report includes 11 draft recommendations: A financial, credit and investment disputes Ombudsman There should be a single industry ombudsman scheme for financial, credit and investment disputes (other than superannuation disputes) to replace FOS and CIO.…

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NSW Supreme Court decision: Removal of discretionary benefit impermissible

In a recent decision, the NSW Supreme Court (Court) upheld a claim that the deletion of a discretionary power to pay an increased benefit was invalid, not in members’ best interests and breached the SIS restriction against adverse alterations to accrued benefits. Background Mr Peter Beck was a member of the Commonwealth Bank’s (Bank’s) staff superannuation…

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Insurance claims – a new trend to place trustees in the firing line?

There are definite trends in superannuation litigation, particularly in relation to insured benefits. Many funds will have noticed that proceedings are often being commenced earlier than they were in the past.  More recently we have noticed that plaintiffs are also seeking ways to render trustees liable for failing to take a more proactive role in…

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