Stamp Duty Exemptions for fixing Mistakes
Sometimes mistakes happen when registering property ownership. Ownership may be registered in the wrong percentages for joint owners for example. There are exemptions available to fix mistakes such as these without the need to pay duty a second time.
One example seen recently was where the client had owned the property 50/50 with their spouse. They didn’t realise this mistake until refinancing many years later and having a solicitor look over their situation. Evidence was produced that they requested the ownership be 99/1% but their original conveyancing solicitor disregarded or missed this when preparing the transfer and as a result the ownership ended up as tenants in common in equal shares.
This was rectified under section 65(14) of the Duties Act NSW without the need to pay additional stamp duty and the ownership ended up with the originally intended 99/1% split as tenants in common.
Normally changing from 50/50 to 99/1 would have resulted in duty being charged a second time on 49% of the property value.
Written by Terry Waugh, solicitor at www.structuringlawyers.com.au