MMP223 Property Law and Practice-Legal Report Assignment
Order Code: 458931
Question Task Id: 0
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You work for DK law firm which specialise in property and tenancy law. Your new boss Jenny Dee has just moved to Victoria from interstate. As she is not yet familiar with Victorian processes, she has asked you to sit in an interview with a new client Jim so you can assist her.
Jim and his brother Clyde used to be in business together where they jointly owned a real-estate agency. They had a falling out 10 years ago in 2012 and Jim transferred his share of the business to Clyde.
Jim and Clyde also co-own a large home in Sorrento Victoria (property) that they both inherited from their grandmother in 2004. The property was valued at $350,000 in 2004 but Jim thinks it is worth $1,500,000 now. The property is really old and has needed a lot of work to be done to maintain and fix the property. From 2018, Jim believes that the rent money has been used to pay for the property repairs.
The property is currently rented to the Samantha and Brendan Jones under a 2 year fixed term lease. The Jones’s moved into the property last year and live in the house with their 3 young children. Clyde manages the lease through his real-estate agency.
Jim lost his job during COVID, is in debt and wants to sell the property but he doesn’t know how to go about doing it. Jim said his brother Clyde does not want to sell. Your boss Jenny thinks that it might be possible to force a sale of the property if he applies to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT). Jim wants to know (a) what the VCAT is, (b) understand the process and costs involved in commencing and running any litigation and (c) the likely outcome, before he takes it further.
Jenny has asked you to prepare the client report as you are more familiar with the VCAT and will be able to write a clear concise report for the client. There are a number of questions outlined below (research scope) that need to be researched and outlined in your report.
1. Provide a brief outline of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) and whether the VCAT has jurisdiction to hear a matter related to co-ownership.
2. Discuss the application process and what information is required to complete an application form. Will Jim have to pay an application fee and if so, how much is the fee?
3. What orders can the VCAT make if he is successful in forcing a sale of the Sorrento property? Can Jim request the property be sold at auction?
4. Clyde’s marriage has broken up and he is going through nasty family law proceedings at Court. Will this affect a decision of the VCAT?
5. It turns out that Clyde did not use the rent money to fix the property. Jim believes that the rent paid since 2018 would have been $80,000. Jim wants to know if he can recover half of the rent he didn’t receive.
6. Jim would like to know the general procedure after an application form is submitted to the VCAT and any other information you think that Jim should know before he takes any action.
Jenny thinks that the Property Law Act 1958, the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 1998 and the Residential Tenancy Act 1997 will be useful in preparing the report. In answering the questions above you are required to refer to the relevant Acts and appropriately reference the information to ensure the accuracy of the advice in your client report.
The report is to be written in a way that the reader can easily understand. Ensure the accuracy of your information and therefore appropriately reference the information: Acts, Cases, etc. (Victorian Civil and Administrative Act 1998). Hints and tips:
a. Keep your client in mind when writing the report. They can search things online for themselves, but they came to the firm with an expectation that you will offer value via; researching, summarising and clearly explaining things to them.
b. The AustlII database will assist you in identifying any relevant legislation. AustlII is introduced in Seminar 1.
c. Cite the legislation (as this is the primary source of information). Don’t primarily use websites to reference legislative provisions. This is an exercise in reading and understanding the legislation. You’ll need to navigate the relevant legislation.
d. Determine your own headings; consider the best number of them to use and the wording too.
e. Do not simply cut & paste information. Rather, use your own words to explain the information to the client. Remember this is legal work, to be written in a legal ‘tone’.
f. ‘Turn It In’. A long reference list will lead to a high ‘Turn It In’ (TII) score, partly also as the word-limit is just 1’250. We allow for this, though your TII score should not exceed 40%.
g. Do not use tables or dot points (except in occasional instances where warranted.)
h. Provide a title page, introduction, and body of report (broken into section with headings), a conclusion and recommendation(s).
i. No executive summary or table of contents is required.
j. Your report should be professionally written with 1 or 1.5 line spacing, should include page numbers, and with no page borders.
k. We recommend searching online to view industry law reports and letters, as they will guide you on the succinct legal presentation required.
l. This is an individual assignment.
m. For assignment queries, use the discussion board
n. To help you to maximise your assessment and to improve your skills, this assignment will be marked in accordance with the marking criteria in the Rubric. Please check it carefully.
o. You must cite your references. Check Seminar 1 (week 1) for reference writing help. Also: https://www.deakin.edu.au/students/studying/study-support/referencing/aglc