NJ Papallo Lawyers

Level 6, 350 Kent St Sydney CBD NSW 2000



} By Appointment Only - week days

Established in 1965, NJ Papallo Lawyers is a small and dynamic practice with extensive experience in providing legal services to Sydney and the greater New South Wales area.

Established in 1965, NJ Papallo Lawyers is a small and dynamic practice with extensive experience in providing a wide range of legal services to a broad client base from multinational companies to the first home buyer.

Nicholas Papallo, the firm’s Principal, has nearly 50 years at the helm and has built the practice with a strong client-focus. By forming close relationships with his clients and with his extensive understanding of Law he has been successfully servicing the needs of his clients and now, their successors, children and even grandchildren.

At N J Papallo Lawyers, we believe that to service a client to our standards, we need to know who our clients are and how they really need assistance, and deliver a service customised to their individual needs. For over 40 years, we believe that our continuing success is testimony to our ability to deliver customised legal services to our clientele.

The firm’s skill set reaches far beyond those of the “standard general practice”, over the last four decades Nicholas has been involved with many areas of the Law, business (both local and international), politics, social groups & functions, and the list goes on, which has meant exposure to many legal issues both first hand and as an advisor.

Nicholas, although being a very active principal and still practicing law, has had a great deal of experience as a consultant to both business and government departments in many and varied areas.

David Papallo, the youngest son of Nicholas, has managed the practice into the technological age while still retaining the integrity of the basis of the firm’s success, client focused service.

It is the vision of the team at N J Papallo Lawyers to deliver excellent legal services with an emphasis on the relationship with the client.

The Areas of law the we specialise in are as follows:

Commercial & Business Law

Commercial and Business law governs the broad areas of business, commerce and consumer transactions and includes:

  • Company law
  • Corporate advice
  • Purchase and sale of a business
  • Setting up a new business
  • Drafting and advising on commercial and retail leases
  • Loan agreements
  • Shareholders deeds

Property Law and Conveyancing

NJ Papallo Lawyers understands that buying or selling a residential, commercial or industrial property is a big decision and a significant matter for most people. We cater to all people making property transactions in New South Wales including international investors.

We can assist you with all your conveyancing and property needs such as:

  • Preparation of contracts for sale or purchase of land
  • Contract review
  • Property settlements and negotiations
  • Commercial & Retail Leases
  • Auction enquiries
  • Assistance for first home owners & the First Home Owners Grant
  • Our conveyancing services are offered at competitive rates, and we deliver them through a highly qualified team.

Wills, Probate & Family Provision

We can assist you with all matters relating to Wills and Estates:

  • Drafting & updating simple wills
  • Drafting of Testamentary Trust Wills
  • Applying for Probate
  • Distribution of Assets
  • Assistance with claims against wills & estates
  • Deceased estate claims / defending deceased estates
  • Estate planning administration
  • Letters of Administration (in the event that a will is deemed invalid)
  • Supreme Court estate litigation, and
  • Assistance with the Family Provision Act 1982

Estate Planning

Estate planning goes beyond drafting a will – it includes:

  • The assessment of assets;
  • Advice regarding the possibility of claims against the estate by third parties; and
  • The protection of assets.

Estate planning is an active process of re-evaluating the estate when circumstances in life change, such as:

  • Newly married couples or those divorcing
  • A change to the family’s asset pool
  • A change in working conditions such as the buying or selling of a business
  • Changes to superannuation, insurance policies
  • The establishment of discretionary trusts

Commercial Litigation

N J Papallo Lawyers strives to settle disputes amicably as our aim is to assist clients avoid disputes wherever possible, and to mitigate potentially damaging consequences following from the litigation process. However we also understand that on certain occasions litigation is an inevitable part of doing business. We try to deliver our legal services through carefully considered strategies to minimise cost and to achieve the best possible outcome for our clients.

At N J Papallo Lawyers we offer highly personalised commercial dispute resolution services with knowledge and expertise to conduct litigation for the full spectrum of matters ranging from more complex high-profile disputes to smaller routine disputes. The areas of our commercial litigation services include:

  • Debt Recovery, Bankruptcy and Corporate Insolvency
  • Contract, Commercial and Property Disputes
  • Trade Practices Disputes
  • Copyright Infringement & Protection of Intellectual Property Rights
  • Insurance Disputes
  • Construction Disputes (for Domestic and Commercial Ventures)
  • Business/Corporate Dissolution & Partnership Disputes
  • Enforcement of Judgment

Notary Public

Nicholas Papallo was appointed Notary Public in 2004 and given statutory powers to witness documents, administer oaths and perform other wide-ranging administrative functions of a nation and international nature including:

  • Attesting documents and certifying their due execution for use in Australia and overseas countries.
  • Preparing and certifying Powers of Attorney, wills, deeds, contracts and other legal documents for use in Australia and overseas.
  • Administering oaths for Australian and international documents.
  • Witnessing signatures to affidavits, statutory declarations, powers of attorney, contracts, and other documents, for use in Australia and overseas countries.
  • Verifying documents for use in Australia and overseas countries.
  • Certifying copy documents for use in Australia and overseas countries.

Liability limited by a scheme approved under the Professional Standards Legislation





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The New South Wales Succession Act (“the Succession Act”) and associated regulations allows for an application to be made to the Court for protection of a person who has lost testamentary capacity. An order can only be made if the person who has lost capacity is alive at the time the order is made by the Court.

Under the Succession Act an application can be made to the Court for an order authorising:

  1. A Will to be made or altered, in specific terms approved by the Court, on behalf of a person who lacks testamentary capacity; or
  2. A Will or part of a Will be revoked on behalf of the person who lacks testamentary capacity.

The Court Application

In order to make the application a person must first apply to the Court for leave to make the application.

The application for leave must include the following information:what do i do about lost capacity applications

  1. A statement about the nature of the application and the reasons why the application is being made;
  2. Evidence of the lack of testamentary capacity of the person for whom the order is sought;
  3. Estimates of the size and character of the Estate of the person for whom the order is sought;
  4. A draft of the proposed Will or revocation that the applicant wants to be approved by the Court;
  5. Evidence of the person’s wishes including any previous Wills made by them;
  6. Evidence of the likelihood of the person acquiring or regaining testamentary capacity;
  7. Evidence of any person who would be entitled to benefit if the person died without a Will (i.e. died intestate).
  8. Evidence of any person who might reasonably be expected to be included in the Will; and
  9. Evidence of any charitable gift that the person might reasonably be expected to make in their Will.

It is apparent from the above list of requirements that a large amount of evidence is required to be put before the Court before they will even consider granting leave to make an application for an order.

This is why you need to seek expert legal advice from a Wills and Estates lawyer if you wish to apply to the Court for an order.  As the proceedings are heard in the Supreme Court this requires a lawyer with knowledge and proficiency in this jurisdiction who is aware of the procedural and legislative requirements to obtain a successful order.

The Court hearing of the application for leave

Once the application for leave has been made the Court will hear the application, grant leave to make the application and make the orders sought if it is satisfied on the following matters:

  1. There is reason to believe that the person is, or is reasonably likely to be, incapable of making a Will; and
  2. It is appropriate for the order to be made; and
  3. The proposed Will, alteration or revocation is one that would have been likely to have been made by the person if they had testamentary capacity; and
  4. Adequate steps have been taken to allow all persons with a legitimate interest in the application to be represented in the proceedings.

Our expert Wills and Estates lawyers have the experience you need to apply to the Court for protection of a person who has lost testamentary capacity.

At Heckenberg Lawyers we don’t take our clients’ confidence for granted: we work hard to earn it by providing an efficient, cost-effective service which puts your interests first and doesn’t cut corners. We take pride in achieving repeat custom and winning clients by word of mouth recommendation.

If you need advice about a Will or an Estate matter please call 02 9221 2779 or email info@hecken.com.au to arrange an initial consultation with principal lawyer Graeme Heckenberg at our centrally located Sydney offices.

See our Will Dispute Lawyer & Contesting Wills page for more information on the Wills & Estates services we provide or contact us for advice specific to your situation.

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What do i do if im left out of a will

The following case study is from a Sydney Law Firm specialising in Will Disputes.   The main points of this case are:-

  • When one parent remarries and leaves the estate to the new spouse.
  • Power of Attorney sells home and buys a new home in his name only.
  • Children could not claim on their mothers’ house as she was no longer on the title.
  • 12-month window for Will Dispute nearly exhausted in negotiations
  • Notional Estate

Our firm successfully represented two sisters who were left out of their mother’s Will.  Their mother contracted a terminal illness and died in her 50s.  Each adult daughter had a young family.  The mother had remarried and had made a mutual Will with her second husband in terms that she left everything to her husband, and that on his death he would leave everything to the two daughters. The husband made a Will leaving everything to his wife, and then to her daughters.

In addition, the wife granted the husband a Power of Attorney over her financial affairs.

Once the wife became ill and was no longer able to be cared for at home she had to be removed to a nursing home.  While she was living in the nursing home and without her knowledge her husband, using the Power of Attorney, sold their home and with the proceeds of sale purchased a new home in his name only.  He did not inform his wife of his actions.

The daughters only learned of these events after the death of their mother, when her estate revealed that she did not own her home.left out of a will what can i do

During the next 11 months the husband continued to promise the two daughters that he would come to an accommodation and provide for them, however, nothing eventuated and the daughters sought our expert advice.  It was important that they did so as their right to bring a claim on their mother’s estate would have lapsed after 12 months, and they would have been robbed of their inheritance if they continued to let the negotiations with the second husband prolong for a further month.

Heckenberg Lawyers was able to file an application on the eve of our clients’ rights expiring and to preserve their rights of inheritance on their mother’s estate.

We were then able to conduct a Court case where we were able to reveal the transactions by which the mother’s real estate and bank accounts had been taken by the second husband for his own benefit and the purchase of his new home.

This involved the concept of ‘notional estate’, whereby evidence is presented to the Court that although the property no longer forms part of the deceased person’s estate (in this case, as it had been taken prior to her death) it can under certain circumstances be identified and brought back into the estate for accounting purposes, which we were successfully able to do in this case.

We are pleased that we were able to achieve a successful result for both our clients and they were able to secure their inheritance, something which their mother had always intended them to receive but they were in very real danger of losing completely.

Heckenberg Lawyers are recognised as leaders in the law of contested estate litigation, disputed Wills and Probate law.  Deceased estate disputes and cases where people have been left of out of the Will are often factually complicated and involve precise legal principles. We have been specialising in these areas of the law for over 20 years, and provide cost-effective and expert legal advice.

See our Will Dispute Lawyer & Contesting Wills page for more information on the Wills & Estates services we provide or contact us for advice specific to your situation.

What do I do left out of a will lawyer