Right of Access

{Published on 20 November 2014} The following documents were provided to the Chairman of ASIC: ASIC Chairman 20 November 2014 20 November 2014 O’Neal PR 20 Nov 14   The Chairman of ASIC, Mr Greg Medcraft, has claimed that Australia is a ‘Paradise’ for white-collar criminals – a statement he was forced to retract by the Acting Assistant Treasurer, Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann. It is a fundamental legal right of any beneficiary of a trust, including a superannuation trust, to have access to the original Trust Deed and all instruments that purport to vary the terms of the original Trust Deed. This right of access for trusts established in South Australia has been confirmed by the Deputy President and Attorney-General of South Australia, the Hon John Rau MP. The question now is will Ms Peggy O’Neal, who is the Legal Director of the “NAB Trustee” responsible for paying superannuation benefits, comply with the law and the NAB Code of Conduct and allow access to the original Trust Deed and latter Deeds of Variation so that these can be checked for invalid amendments? Ms O’Neal is also the President of the Richmond Football Club. It is a criminal offence to deny access to the Deeds of large superannuation funds. A Court in England recently struck down 30 purported amending Deeds of a pension fund on the grounds that these Deeds had failed to comply with the legal formalities required for amending Deeds. It is a core obligation of any Trustee to act honestly and in the best interests of the beneficiaries. A Trustee can also seek advice and directions from the Court if in doubt as to how to interpret the terms of the trust.