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Joanne Hazeldene

principal lawyer, private clients | wills and estates

meet Joanne

about Joanne

Wills and Estates is an area of law that affects everyone at some point. It is this human element that makes Joanne passionate about the field. She knows it’s a sensitive area that can have a big impact on a family when the time comes.

“For me this is not a job. It’s about knowing I can make a difference when somebody can’t fight for themselves.”

Always approaching a matter from a place of empathy, Joanne listens to her clients, and gets to know their family and their situation inside out to ensure their specific needs will be met. Knowing all she can about her clients, Joanne is able to produce creative solutions tailored to fit their life and their needs.

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Areas of Expertise

administration of informal wills
advanced care directives
all facets of wills (especially testamentary trust wills)
appointment of medical treatment decision makers
body and burial rights
business succession
caveats
challenging wills
deeds of family arrangement
estate administration
executor’s commission tax
infant compromises
insolvent estates
letters of administration (intestacy)
memo of wishes
powers of attorney, including vcat applications
probabte
recertifications of wills
reseals of foreign grant of representation
section 15 applications
specialist of limited grants of representation
superannuation and death benefit nominations
variations of trusts

industries

accountants

additional qualifications

accredited specialist, wills and estates, law institute of victoria
member, society of trust and estate practitioners (step)

recent experience

  • inter-generational estate dispute

    In a matter involving three generations of a wealthy family, Joanne defended a Statutory Will application made by a grandson who was attempting to change his grandmother’s Will before she died. The Will specified for her estate to be split five ways between her children and if any of her children were to pass away before her, the estate would then be split between the surviving children. The grandson applied to the Victorian Supreme Court to be allowed to change his grandmother’s last Will so that his deceased father’s share of her estate would be passed on to him instead of going to her surviving children. Representing one of the surviving children, Joanne was able to show that firstly the grandson had brought his action under the incorrect legislation and secondly, even if the application was refiled under the correct legislation, the proposed changes did not reflect the intentions of the grandmother based on the history of Wills made previously.

  • complex estate planning to future-proof

    Joanne assisted clients who were a family who owned many motor dealerships, with their estate and succession planning. Joanne was able to put a plan in place to ensure smooth succession between the family’s generations, grooming the children into the structure and eventually have the interests handed over. The plan she devised was necessarily complex, in order to make sure the client’s needs were met. Joanne ensured it was delivered in a manner that the many interested parties involved were able to understand.

  • caretaker wrongs made right

    As a result of caring for his father for 16 years, the son was in financial need. Approximately 12% of the estate had been left to the son, another 12% to a daughter and the remaining majority to an institution that had very little to do with the father. Joanne represented the son as he challenged his father’s Will. The result saw the daughter’s entitlement remain the same and the remaining estate equally divided between the son and the institution. This allowed the son to purchase a property, as his previous accommodation had been in a granny flat at the rear of his father’s property so he could care for him. The son also received sufficient funds to live off, as he was now too old to work and had no super to fall back on.