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Our Expertise

Property Development

Russell Kennedy has a strong and dedicated property and development team that provides legal services in relation to urban, suburban and rural property. We are committed to working with clients to create positive outcomes for our communities.

Our population has grown significantly in the last 20 years and Federal Treasury forecasts suggest it may reach 35 million by 2035. Such growth will demand newly constructed and improved land and buildings to satisfy residential, commercial, industrial and social needs.

Many of our transactions incorporate broader stakeholder involvement and require social, environmental and economic consideration as well as an understanding of policy and legal compliance frameworks. Russell Kennedy’s property and development team contributes to the development and review of legislation as committee members of the Law Institute of Victoria’s property and environmental law section.

Five lawyers in Russell Kennedy’s Property Development team have been recognised as among Australia’s best in the 2017 Best Lawyers in Australia list. Two lawyers have been recognised for expertise in Real Property Law.

Property and development

With one of Victoria’s largest property development and planning teams, our market leading legal expertise includes:

  • sales and acquisitions of major CBD buildings, shopping centres and industrial sites
  • documentation for sales by tender
  • complex subdivisions, including advising on owners corporation issues, preparing sales documentation and acting in all aspects of the subdivision process
  • joint venture arrangements
  • high volume conveyancing at fixed rates
  • acquisition and surrender of easements, advising on covenants, environmental, planning and heritage overlays
  • sales and acquisitions of Crown land, including restrictions under the Crown Land (Reserves) Act, Land Act and Water Industry Act
  • compulsory acquisitions
  • native title claims and agreements
  • all issues relating to roads, including road discontinuances
  • rezoning of lands
  • mortgagee sales

Leases and licences

We act for Australian landlords and tenants, both large and small, in the public and private sector. In acting for our clients we cover:

  • general commercial leasing transactions
  • retail leasing, in particular the application and interpretation of state based retail leasing legislation in force across Australia
  • the preparation and negotiation of building development leases
  • Crown land leases, sub-leases and licences, including alpine resort leases
  • standard form and custom made leasing documents
  • client representation in leasing disputes, in mediations and in litigation (where required)

Planning and environment

Russell Kennedy is a market leader in planning and environmental law. We quickly assemble legal teams to respond to a diverse range of planning and environmental property and development issues. Our expertise includes:

  • environment, building, natural resources and heritage planning law
  • matters incorporating strategic planning and rezonings
  • planning and building proposals, including representation at the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal
  • Environmental Protection Agency Victoria works approvals and licence approvals
  • development approvals in respect of landfills, composting facilities and prescribed industrial waste reuse
  • purchase, leasing and disposition of contaminated or potentially contaminated land
  • water industry issues and reforms, and governance
  • major water infrastructure developments
  • water catchment management and waste reuse
  • allocation of water entitlements

Building and construction

We provide expert building and construction legal advice for residential and commercial developments, infrastructure projects, aged care and retirement living facilities. We cover:

  • project management
  • commercial, development and specialist finance advice
  • security of payments advice
  • contract advice
  • drafting and risk management