QRO Refusing to Stamp Family Trust Property Transfers Exempt from Duty
I established a Private Family Trust with Mark Back in Novemberm 2022. We then signed over a family property to the Trust on December 2nd following all the relevant requirements including Oaths (Evidence) & Paperwork signed and endorsed by a JP and then filed with the Qld Revenue Office (QRO) for Stamp Duty Exemption & Stamping. It took the QRO in excess of 5 weeks to assign an officer after telling me early on it was an “Intermediate matter”. This made me nervous, and they did not disappoint me. My first communication came back in January saying the transaction was dutiable (in stark contrast to the provisions of the Duties Act 2001). I wrote a letter refuting their claim in the context of the Legisation, and they came back to me not acknowledging anything I had written about, but deflecting the exchange from their original points raised to a different division of the Act adding that Div 4 Section 55 of the Legisation was the problem not Div 2 Section 118 the latter of which is the exemption clause. They did not get specific with this problem in writing, but later when they phoned me, they claimed verbally that there was nobody taking an interest in the Trust as a Default Benefitiary on the day of the property Transaction on Dec 2nd. I wrote back again documenting their advice, and refuting this claim based on the definitions in the Legislation which clearly showed there was no timing assigned to a Beneficiary taking interest in a trust relating to a property transaction which therefore supported our exemption application. They refused to reply to this latter letter only sending me further emails repeating their prior Contract Offer of “Dutiable” and that I had to submit a property valuation to have the Application fully assessed. I refused to submit that valuation understanding that I would be consenting to their “Contract Offer” of Dutiable and would ultimately be issued a Notice for the Duty. They then told me verbally in a phone call that appeal to the ruling was only possible after the assessment on their terms inc me providing the valulation. They have also now refused to respond to a further letter of mine contesting their spurious verbal advice which I documented in that letter. We are now at a standoff and I am considering Serving Notice on the Acting Commissioner to receive a response as to why the transaction is not excempt in light of the Duties Act 2001 which is emphatic.
My question to everyone is “Has anyone had similar problems doing this, or has anyone had success in performing this exempt transaction without resistance from the QRO”
These goings on suggest to me that something internal to the Qld Government has changed in relation to these Private Trusts, and possibly because Mark’s Entity has authored them. I am concerned that if I do Notice the Acting Commissioner and recieve no reply, then file with the Supreme Court for ex parte ruling that a similar thing will happen to those who attempted ex parte rulings for the Vax letters, which was the Supremes closed ranks and refused to rule against the Qld Government. Obviously I am discussing this with Mark when he has time available (which is not that often), but the way I’m seeing this is that this move of the QRO will likely affect everyone who is attempting to do this sort of thing in future using Mark’s Trust Deed. Let me know your thoughts. Have I got this wrong?