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Harmans Lawyers

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Harmans Lawyers
Professional Services
485 Papanui Road
Christchurch 8053
03 3522293
03 3522274
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Seniors Law
Phillipa Shaw - 03 3522293
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The Seniors Team at Harmans specialises in legal issues relating to seniors. Our friendly team offers practical advice in plain English so you have peace of mind and feel confident in making decisions that are right for you and your family.

You don't need to visit us in town either. Our team is conveniently located in Papanui with ample client carparking and easy access. If you can’t get to us, we offer a Home Visit Service, so we can come to you.

Our Seniors Team is here to help you through all stages of life. We specialise in:
•Enduring Powers of Attorney
•Occupation Right Agreements
•Rest Home Subsidies or Loans
•Funeral Trusts
•Property Ownership
•Estate Planning
•Asset Protection
•Any legal issues that seniors face
Languages Spoken
Languages Spoken
English Yes
Updated: 27 Apr 2017
Professional Services
Professional Services
Professional ServicesStatusDetails
Legal/Para Legal Services Yes
Updated: 27 Apr 2017
Elderly Services & Seniors Law Team

Having provided a full range of legal services to the people of Canterbury since 1888 it was a natural progression for Harmans to establish and develop areas of law that will provide their clients with expert advice in an increasingly diversified legal environment.

One such speciality area of law is the Elderly Services and Seniors Law Team, which was formed by Harmans in 1999 to coincide with the International Year of the Older Person.

Over the past 17 years, the Seniors Law Team has built on those early foundations and continues to diversify and grow as the baby boomer generation moves into retirement and the need for specialist legal advice in this area of law rapidly increases.

Examples of specialist areas of law, with a specific impact on seniors, are:

•the growth of the retirement village industry and the need for expert legal advice prior to entry into an Occupation Right Agreement

•the criteria surrounding eligibility for a Residential Care Subsidy, which requires a working knowledge of the current regulations, including the relevant asset and income testing levels and the Work and Income gifting regime, particularly in relation to Discretionary or Family Trusts

•property ownership and how this may impact on you and your family as you move into retirement

The Seniors Law Team also ensures that clients have:

•robust advice on asset protection and estate planning and how this will affect them as they move into retirement

•valid Enduring Powers of Attorney for both Property and Personal Care & Welfare

•valid Wills

•assistance with a variety of legal work such as, conveyancing, Trust formation and on-going administration

Harmans Seniors Law Team is currently based in Papanui.

One of our goals is to ensure that all of our Senior clients have access to legal advice and assistance. Sometimes that requires us to take our service to our clients. We can therefore arrange appointments in our clients’ homes, or when required, in the care facility or hospital they are residing in, either to take instructions or to witness their execution of the documents.

Updated: 8 Nov 2017
What's New
What's New


With advances in medicine resulting in people living generally longer, there is a greater need for robust procedures to be in place to protect us as we age. A common concern is what happens when we are no longer able to make our own decisions. Loss of capacity brought on by illness, especially in old age, is not at all uncommon and Enduring Powers of Attorney are a key safeguard to protect our wishes in relation to our care and property. The Enduring Power of Attorney differs from a general power of attorney in that it continues or “endures” after a person loses mental capacity.

There are two types of Enduring Powers of Attorney: one in relation to personal care and welfare, and one in relation to property.

An Enduring Power of Attorney in relation to Personal Care and Welfare appoints one person as your attorney to make decisions about your care - such as where you are to live and whether you are properly cared for. This Enduring Power of Attorney is only activated when you are certified as having lost mental capacity by a qualified health provider.

An Enduring Power of Attorney in relation to Property allows you to appoint one or more attorneys to manage and make decisions about your property. Property doesn’t just cover your house but includes your finances and investments. You decide whether the attorney/s may act while you have mental capacity or only if you lose mental capacity and you can add other conditions.

Choosing your attorney is one of the most important steps you take in setting up an Enduring Power of Attorney.

For a Personal Care and Welfare Attorney you may want to select someone who knows you well and who you can rely on to respond to your preferences. They are required to encourage you to act on your behalf and participate in the community as much as possible, so having your attorney living close by is helpful.

For your Property Attorney you should choose someone able to handle money matters easily and responsibly. There is a statutory requirement that your attorney maintain financial records and make these records available to any person you have stipulated should receive them.

The role of attorney is one of great responsibility and it carries with it legal obligations. It is something you should review periodically to ensure you have the people you continue to have trust in, and, are able to act for you. While you have mental capacity, you can revoke the appointment of an attorney by providing them with notice in writing.

At Harmans we have a specialist seniors team to help with any queries and to assist you to set up deeds that best meet your needs. Give Phillipa Shaw a call on 352-2293 to arrange an appointment to discuss your situation.