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I am currently going through an amicable relationship

I am currently going...

I am currently going through an amicable relationship property settlement. I am buying the family home off my partner. The S21 has been done and signed by both of us. My lawyer does not have a trust account and has instructed another lawyer to do the conveyancing. The lawyer that had my partner engaged to sign off the S21 kept mentioning that my lawyer does not have a trust account and it would cost my partner $900 to transfer the property out of joint name into my name solely. I don't think he really understood that I was paying a lawyer to do the conveyancing. He was called in on Friday to do the final signing and has been given a draft account with the $900 fee included. By question is can they also charge for conveyancing? They also told him he would have his money by Wednesday (settlement is 28 March). They must know something I don't. Our current mortgage has not been discharged so my new mortgage cannot yet be drawn down and I have not signed any paper work relating to that

Lawyer's Assistant: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.

Sorry I thought this was a New Zealand site.

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have you taken so far?

Everything is still being finalised

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

No I don't think so

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Answered in 1 hour by:
3/18/2018
Chris The Lawyer
Category: New Zealand Law
Satisfied Customers: 23,857
Experience: 38 years qualified as a lawyer; LLB, MMgt and FAMINZ.
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I am a New Zealand lawyer based in Wellington and will help you with your question today. Please give me a minute to read the question

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Normally when a property is sold there is a fee for the seller and for the buyer by their respective lawyers. In this case your husband's lawyer will need to prepare the appropriate transfer documents, and the lawyer you are using for your conveyancing will also have to prepare and authorise the Landlonline transactions. So I am not surprised he has an account for the transfer, as that is usual

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
From what my lawyer doing the conveyancing said, my partner's lawyer was doing very little other than getting the transfer signed and setting up for the money to be transferred to them to pay him. My understanding is that my lawyer was engaged to do all the conveyancing. The amount my partner has been charged looks like it going to be more, than want I will be paying for most of the work being done. Hourly rates for both lawyers are similar

Your husband is entitled to get an explanation of the work which is being done. I expect there is a discharge of mortgages and the Authorised Nominating Authority and some Landonline fees. But he should definately get a breakdown of the fee and how it is made up. I cant say off the top of my head if this is excessive without more information about what they are doing for him. But they are obliged to explain, and he should ask.

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
My lawyer is handling all the mortgage discharge and drawn downs. My partners lawyer is just handling the signing of the paper work nothing more

It may be on the high side if that is all, especially if there has been a separate fee for the negotiation of the agreement. All lawyers must respond to challnges to fees, and complaints, so he should ask why

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
It is extremely high because they charged him $600 to go over the the s21. In total he will pay nearly as much as me with two lawyers who have done all the work. My understanding is they could be possibly be double dipping

I think the $600 fee is a bit light for the agreement frankly as I would have charged more than this myself. But again I dont know how much work they had to do. But $900 may be on the high end.

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There is a heavy burden when you advise someone on an agreement to ensure all the points are covered and it is most important to do this carefully and thoroughly. If the lawyer does a once over, then they are risk for being sued if the agreement is overturned as inadequately explained

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
We are not in Queen Street, we are the Far North. Hourly rates go from $275 to $300 per hour. The $600 was to go over a two page agreement that was straight forward and he was prepared to sign. I paid just over $1000 to have the s21 drawn up.

I am in Wellington so while not at Queen St rates, then would charge more than the far North lawyers. But if he is unhappy, challenge the fees

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
I am actually paying him more than I legally need to as a goodwill token. This is amicable and straight forward. I get the house, refinance and pay him out. Everything else is sorted. The are no minor children
Customer reply replied 5 months ago
I will get him to query the fees. Thank you for your advise

Thank you for the reply and for using this site. You may ask further questions or rate this answer when you are ready.

Chris The Lawyer
Category: New Zealand Law
Satisfied Customers: 23,857
Experience: 38 years qualified as a lawyer; LLB, MMgt and FAMINZ.
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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
Where do I rate the answer
Customer reply replied 5 months ago
Sorry found it

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