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Connolly Suthers

Celebrating over 125 Years as Queensland Lawyers
1895 – 2021

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Connolly Suthers

Lawyers Townsville & Queensland Residents Can Trust

Sometimes, all you need is a fresh perspective. Connolly Suthers are North Queensland’s most experienced and qualified law firm. Established in 1895 with a foundation of leading Townsville lawyers, Connolly Suthers has since become one of North Queensland’s largest, most diverse, and dynamic firms.

Employing a range of expert Queensland and Townsville lawyers who offer specialist legal advice, Connolly Suthers comprises a team of individual talents working under collective energy. Operating from Townsville to Brisbane, Mount Isa, Cairns and Ayr, Connolly Suthers deliver Queensland’s highest standards of legal advice and services.

We work under the belief that strong reputations don't go unnoticed, and this is why our firm has continued to successfully service the legal needs of North Queenslanders for over 125 years. Work with a Townsville law firm that understands you and prioritises your needs – work with Connolly Suthers.

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What Our Customers Are Saying

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  • TM Townsville 10/2021

    I couldn’t think more highly of Connolly Suthers Lawyers Townsville. The professionalism and client care I received from start to finish was outstanding and really helped me feel comfortable during a difficult and important time in my life. A big thank you to Conan and Ji for looking after my case and me. I felt supported and well looked after during the entire process, everything was explained in great detail so that I understood and no questions were left unanswered. I would highly recommend Conan and Connolly Suthers Law Firm to anyone in need of their services. Thank you again, I will always be very appreciative.

  • JN Townsville 09/2021

    The team at Connolly Suthers lawyers were outstandingly helpful throughout the purchase of a new house, Danny Burke went above and beyond to make the whole process run smoothly, highly recommended! If I could put more than 5 stars down I would without doubt!

  • GG Townsville 11/2020

    Bill and the team at Connolly Suthers Lawyers Townsville are amazing. They were very professional and genuinely care about their clients needs. Highly recommended.

  • NR Townsville 12/2019

    Would thoroughly recommend the Connolly Suthers Team for any legal work in Townsville and beyond. Thankyou to Renee Lovelady-Tomas from Connolly Suthers who helped facilitate the smooth purchase of our first home. Communication was excellent and all issues were addressed quickly and with great results. Thankyou from Nigel and Corrie.

  • MC Townsville 06/2019

    Incredibly professional, comprehensive representation at very reasonable prices. The team at Connolly Suthers Lawyers Townsville took the stress out of a difficult situation and achieved the best possible outcome for our business. Their specialist lawyers managed our case with complete diligence and showed respect, courtesy and empathy to our circumstances. We highly recommend their services to anyone who is suffering unfair or unjust treatment and encourage potential clients to put their faith and trust in these wonderful people. Thank you Connolly Suthers - you truly are champions of the people.

  • AH, Townsville 09/2021

    I have been using Connolly Suthers Lawyers Townsville for many years now both in my business and personally. During this time I have always found them to be extremely professional, concise and offer the very best advice in all the matters they attended to. Connolly Suthers are my first recommendation for any matters that require legal representation and you are looking for quality outcome.

  • BL Townsville 12/2021

    I would like to thank Tanya Morris for her dedicated and professional advice over the past twelve months and ongoing support. At all times Tanya has provided expert advice and made the process of processing legal documentation very managable to say the least. Tanya is an extremely valuable asset to the Connolly Suthers (Townsville) team.

  • JK Townsville 09/2021

    I would like to highly recommend Tanya Morris for any family law matters you may have. Tanya was always available and constantly kept me updated throughout the process. Matters like this are difficult enough on their own and having the professionalism of Tanya made it seamless and stress free.Connolly Suthers Lawyers Townsville are very professional and all staff I had the pleasure of meeting throughout the process, were extremely helpful and friendly. If I ever require a legal representative again, I will definitely be using the team at Connolly Suthers!Thank you Tanya and the team.

Our Legal Blogs

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Article
What is a Director Identification Number (director ID) and do I need one?
What is a Director Identification Number (director ID) and do I need one?

You may have heard about the new rules which require directors of Australian companies to obtain a Director Identification Number (director ID). The new requirement to obtain a director ID also applies to individuals who have an SMSF with a corporate trustee. All directors of your corporate trustee will need to apply for their own director ID by the prescribed deadline. This document provides some important information about Director Identification Numbers, including how to apply for one and by when. An application for a director ID must be made individually and only by those who are applying for the director ID. As you are required to prove your identity as part of the process, our firm, or any other third party, is not able to apply for a director ID on your behalf.    What is a Director Identification Number (director ID)? A director ID is a unique identifier that directors need to apply for, like a tax file number. If you are a director of multiple companies, you are only required to have one director ID that will be used across all companies. You will keep your director ID forever even if you change companies, resign altogether from your director role(s), change your name, or move overseas.   Why do I need a Director Identification Number? As part of the Government’s Digital Business Plan, it is rolling out a Modernising Business Registers program which includes the introduction of director IDs. The main purpose is to prevent the use of false or fraudulent director identities as well as to improve the efficiency of the system by making it easier to meet registration obligations and trace director activity and relationships. By improving the integrity and security of business data it is expected to reduce the risk of unlawful activity.   How do I apply for a Director Identification Number? There are 3 key steps to apply for your director ID. Step 1: Set up myGovID – If you do not already have a myGovID you will need to set this up before you can apply for your director ID online. You can find information on how to setup your myGovID by downloading the app at:  https://www.mygovid.gov.au/set-up  Step 2: Gather your documents – You will need to gather some information that the ATO already knows about you to verify your identity. You will need your tax file number, your residential address held by the ATO, and information from two of the following documents: Bank account details ATO notice of assessment Super account details Dividend statement Centrelink payment summary PAYG payment summary  Most of this information can be downloaded from your myGov account so it may be worthwhile linking to this service ahead of applying for your director ID. Note, myGovID is different to your myGov account. Your myGov account allows you to link to and access online services provided by the ATO, Centrelink, Medicare and more, while myGovID is an app that enables you to prove who you are and to log in to a range of government online services, including myGov.  Step 3: Complete your application - Once you have a myGovID and information to verify your identity, you are ready to apply for your director ID. You can click on the following link to start the application process. The application process is quick and should take you less than 5 minutes.  https://abrs.gov.au/persons/ui/secure/start/applyForDirectorID?action=applyfordirectorid Further information about the application process, and step-by-step instructions, can be found via this link: https://www.abrs.gov.au/director-identification-number/apply-director-identification-number

Article
Is It A Scam?
Is It A Scam?

New data released Naturally, people aspire to get the most out of their investments, especially if a great opportunity is presented by a ‘trusted’ organisation. However, investment scams occur more often than you may think, highlighting the risk both self-directed investors and SMSF trustees may potentially face when seeking new investment opportunities. New data released from Scamwatch Australia has reinforced the sophistication and rapidly growing number of scams each year in Australia – which has caused a loss of over $851 million* in total in 2020 – $328 million of which related to investment scams. It is extremely important for you to remain vigilant and reach out to me, your trusted SMSF professional, before investing your retirement savings in a new product or service.  *ACCC Media Release 7 June 2021 What does the data reported to Scamwatch Australia tell us? During 2020, the average monetary value lost to scams has increased by 23%. Scammers have become more sophisticated in their approach, claiming to be from well-known investment organisations or government bodies, with the aim of extracting personal information from an individual. Investment scams have caused the most financial harm to the Australian population throughout 2020 resulting in $328 million lost. Advancements in both technology and software design allow scammers to recreate websites to look identical to an actual organisation’s site, meaning it is becoming increasingly difficult to identify what is a scam and what isn’t. Older Australians (65+) are often more at risk of being approached by scammers as they perceive this particular age group to have more accumulated wealth. The top contact methods used by scammers include phone (47.7%), email (22%), text message (15%), internet (6.3%) and social networking (4.5%)*. Scammers will often inject a sense of urgency into their messaging, propose threats (particularly with tax scams), and request personal and banking information. *Scamwatch Australia Targeting scams report 2020 What should you do if you suspect a scam? If someone attempts to scam you, there are several things you can do: Report the scam to Scamwatch Australia - www.scamwatch.gov.au/report-a-scam or ReportCyber - Report | Cyber.gov.au immediately. Do not provide any personal information that will allow a scammer to impersonate and retrieve your funds. Do not click on links you have received via text or email that have a substantial number of letters and numbers. If you have lost money to a scam, contact your financial institution immediately. If you have provided personal information and you are concerned your identity may be compromised, you can contact IDCARE for free support on 1800 595 160. Consider contacting the organisation the suspected scammer claims to work for – the organisation may be able to confirm your suspicions. If you have been scammed or believe you have been scammed, you shouldn’t feel embarrassed or ashamed. Financial scams are now crimes which are occurring regularly – many scams are very sophisticated and professional, and very experienced investors have lost money to scams. It is becoming increasingly important to discuss the risk of scams with family, friends, and peers. How can we help? If you need assistance with identifying whether you are being approached by a scammer, please feel free to give me a call to discuss in more detail. We are here to support you and it’s important that we start the conversation as scamming is a continuous risk in our technologically advanced world. If you would like to seek more information about scams to protect your SMSF, please call.

Article
Hold up wait a minute? Can the Police stop and search me?
Hold up wait a minute? Can the Police stop and search me?

The most common question a criminal lawyer can get asked is, “what do I do if the police come to speak to me?’  The answer is fairly straightforward however most people don’t know their basic rights when it comes to interactions with the police. If you are stopped by the Police you are lawfully required to provide your identifying particulars that is your name, date of birth, and residential address. Naturally, you would think that speaking to the Police would be the 'right thing to do' however every lawyer will tell you that the golden rule is that: “You are not lawfully required to provide a statement or record of interview to the police, and you should never speak to the police without first speaking to a lawyer..” So what does this mean? What powers do the Police have when it comes to stopping and searching you? What are you legally required to do when the Police ask to search you? The Supreme Court Cairns recently ruled in favour of a defendant in a pre-trial application.  The decision closely examined Police Powers and Responsibilities Act and the power of Police to stop, detain, and search a person.  Ryan Connor Paull, the Applicant, was charged with possession of unlawful items including a pipe, cannabis, and approximately 26.812 grams of MDMA. His Honour Justice Henry ruled that evidence which was obtained by the Police should be excluded from his trial.   R v Paull [2021] QSCPR 22 Facts: On 2 July 2020 Police were conducting patrols in the Cairns CBD District in a marked Police vehicle at approximately 1:50am. The officers had seen the Applicant walking across the road and onto a footpath. The Police continued to follow the Applicant and eventually stopped him asking for Mr Paull to produce some identification. The officers eventually detained the Applicant for the purpose of conducting a search. As the officers were beginning to search Mr Paull he had stated to them "if I'm in trouble…" and produced a bag inside his pants. This bag was found to contain 26.8grams of methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), which was later to be a pure weight of 18grams. He was also in possession of a pipe and a small amount of Cannabis. Mr Paull was eventually charged on indictment to the Supreme Court, with Possessing a Dangerous Drug over 2g (circumstance of aggravation) and a single count of possessing cannabis.   Legal issues for the Court to consider? In this application the Court needed to decide on the following issues: Was the evidence obtained by Police done so lawfully? When searching Mr Paull, did the police exercise their powers appropriately in accordance with the Police Powers & Responsibilities Act 2000 (QLD) (PPRA) If the evidence was obtained unlawfully, should the Court exercise its discretion in finding the evidence inadmissible?   Can the Police stop me? The short answer is yes. The Police can lawfully stop you and require you to provide your identifying particulars (name, date of birth, and address) in prescribed circumstances.[1]  A prescribed circumstance is set out in detail at section 41 of the PPRA, it essentially includes a situation whereby the Police reasonably suspect that a person has or is about to commit an offence. Another question more commonly asked, is can the Police stop, detain, and search me when there isn’t a warrant? The short answer is also yes, however the Police must have a reasonable suspicion that a person may be in possession of an unlawful item such as a dangerous drug or stolen property. These prescribed circumstances are found under s30 of the PPRA.[2]   Reasonable Suspicion The term reasonable suspicion or ‘reasonably suspects’ is defined under Schedule 6 of the PPRA and essentially means that an officer suspects on grounds which are reasonable in the circumstances. This means that an officer searching someone without a warrant must do so without mere idle wandering.[3]    Discretion to exclude evidence At common law there is authority that gives a Trial Judge the discretion to exclude evidence on public policy grounds in circumstances where evidence has been obtained by the police's unlawful conduct. This allows the court to exclude evidence against a person, in what would be a strong prosecution case, on the basis that the evidence has been obtained unlawfully.[4] When the Court applies this discretion it essentially tries to perform a balancing act of bringing a conviction against someone who has broken the law and ensuring that at the same time there has not been an abuse of the power by the Police to enforce the law. [5]   Decision In Mr Paull’s case the Police had submitted that his behaviour alone was a relevant factor in determining a reasonable suspicion. The Police stated that Mr Paull had been ‘walking fast’ with his head down, with no other person’s in the area when he was stopped.   The Police further submitted that when they approached Mr Paull they had a consensual conversation with him. In this conversation the Police stated to the Court that during this conversation Mr Paull's behaviour raised a reasonable suspicion which would justify the Police detaining him for the purpose of a search. The Court rejected these submissions, noting that within the CBD area there were a number of hostels, permanent housing, and apartments which would have people traveling between accommodations.  The Court did not accept the Police argument that no other person's were in the area as another pedestrian was captured in the Police Body Worn footage.[6]  Ultimately the Court ruled that whilst there would not be many people out at that time of the night, the mere act alone of walking fast at night did not reasonably ground a suspicion that a prescribed circumstance existed. The Court found that the Police had not established any of the prescribed circumstances under the Police Powers Responsibilities Act which would allow them to stop, detain, and search Mr Paull. The Court exercised its discretion and excluded the evidence of Mr Paull's possession of the items and his admissions to the Police as evidence in his trial.   How can we help? If you find yourself in a situation where the Police are wanting to speak to you, you are facing Police charges, or you have been charged and you are unsure whether the due process has been followed then make sure you speak to a lawyer. Our Criminal Law team at Connolly Suthers Lawyers can provide you with the timely advice which can make all the difference in your case. It is extremely important that you speak to us first before you speak to the Police. [1] Section 40 and 41 of the Police Powers & Responsibilities Act 2000 (QLD) (PPRA [2] Ibid s 30 [3]  George v Rockett (1990) CLR 104. [4] Ridgeway v R [1995] 184 CLR [5] R v Paull [2021] QSCPR 22 at [4] [6]  Ibid

Connolly Suthers Townsville Law Firm

Connolly Suthers Townsville Law Firm

At Connolly Suthers Townsville, we feel privileged to be entrusted with our client's legal affairs, helping them navigate what is often some of the most challenging times of their lives. Our diverse, talented team has considerable expertise in multiple aspects of law and channel this experience to make a substantial, positive difference in the lives of Townsville locals.

We believe that your lawyer should have a significant understanding of how Townsville operates and its underlying cultural systems to provide the most genuine, useful legal advice possible. That’s why we frequently employ locally from within Townsville, possessing a proud history of employing law graduates from James Cook University. Not only does this allow us to give back to the local community, but it only boosts our ability to deliver the most relevant and beneficial legal advice possible.

Our genuine care for the wellbeing of our clients and attention to detail in every case is what sets us apart from other law firms in Townsville. If you’re looking for legal assistance in Townsville, we’re looking to make a positive difference in as many lives as possible. Call Connolly Suthers on 07 4771 5664 to get help today.

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Find out a Connolly Suthers Lawyers can do for you

If you have an ongoing case with another firm and you are unhappy with how things are progressing, you might want to consider switching to Connolly Suthers.

Find out a Connolly Suthers Lawyers can do for you

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You can have the best legal representation you deserve without the worry of paying legal costs in the event you lose your case*

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Learn More About Townsville's Leading Law Firm

What legal services co Connolly Suthers offer?

It’s highly likely that you’ll need the services of a lawyer at least once in your lifetime.  When you turn to Connolly Suthers for legal assistance, you can be confident that you’ll receive quality legal advice with a personal touch, regardless of which service you require.

Whatever type of legal assistance you need, we’re sure to be able to help.  At Connolly Suthers, we have considerable experience and knowledge in all aspects of compensation law, family law, wills and estates, property law, criminal law, conveyancing, business services and dispute resolution.

We have Queensland Law Society Accredited Specialists in Property Law, Succession Law, Family law and Personal Injuries Litigation. Combining extensively trained and experienced legal practitioners with state-of-the-art communications and technology, Connolly Suthers delivers an unrivalled level of legal service in the Townsville region.

Do you offer free consultations?

Yes, at Connolly Suthers Lawyers Townsville, we offer free consultations in most areas.

Please note that while ‘family law’ and ‘employment law’ offer discounted fees for your initial appointment, they do not offer free consultations.

You can request a free consultation here.

Do you offer No-Win, No-Fee?

Yes we offer no-win, no-fee services because we believe that nobody should be denied justice as a result of limited finances.  We offer no-win, no-fee services in a range of matters including:

  • Traffic accidents
  • Workplace accidents
  • Public liability accidents
  • Medical negligence claims
  • Life insurance claims
  • Superannuation claims
  • Certain commercial disputes

With Connolly Suthers Townsville Lawyers, you get the legal representation that you deserve without the worry of paying legal costs in the event that you lose your case.  Work with the lawyers that understand you and prioritise your needs – Connolly Suthers Townsville.

How much does legal representation with Connolly Suthers Townsville cost?

All Connolly Suthers Townsville clients receive the absolute highest level of quality legal representation and advice available in the region.  Generally the cost of our legal services will vary based on the time required for our legal team to work on your case and the extent of the case as a whole, unless it is one of our fixed-fee services.

Regardless, we believe that nobody should be denied justice as a result of limited finances and that’s why we offer no-win, no-fee services in a range of matters including:

  • Traffic accidents
  • Workplace accidents
  • Public liability accidents
  • Medical negligence claims
  • Life insurance claims
  • Superannuation claims
  • Certain commercial disputes

With Connolly Suthers Townsville Lawyers, you get the legal representation that you deserve without the worry of paying legal costs in the event that you lose your case.  Work with the lawyers that understand you and prioritise your needs – Connolly Suthers Townsville.

How do you charge? Will I need to pay upfront? What are your prices like?

Most legal services are charged in accordance with a costs agreement which is provided to you at the commencement of the matter.  Usually this must be signed and returned before any work is completed.  This includes work done in most areas such as family law, personal injury, large commercial and leasing work, criminal law and estate administration.

There are fixed price services available for basic conveyancing, wills and enduring powers of attorney, please contact our office for more information about these services.

Do you offer payment plans?

Generally, no. However, you should feel free to discuss your financial situation with the lawyer involved with your case, at your initial appointment at Connolly Suthers Townsville.

Do you certify documents? Do you have JPs available?

We usually only certify documents for clients of Connolly Suthers Townsville or in the course of matters in which we are involved.  If you are looking to find a JP you can search for one here.

Do you hold relatives' documents in safe custody? What can you hold in safe custody?

For client's of Connolly Suthers Townsville we offer the service of storing in our safe custody original Wills, Enduring Powers of Attorney, Certificates of Title, etc.

How are you involved with the Townsville Community?

The partners and staff of Connolly Suthers Townsville have long-standing ties throughout the local community. Over the years we have supported various clubs and sporting teams in Townsville and in the Burdekin. We are regular supporters of Ronald McDonald House  and the Vinnies foundation.

Find out more about our contributions to the local community here.

How do I contact Connolly Suthers Townsville?

You can call our Townsville office on 07 4771 5664 during business hours.

Alternatively, submit an email enquiry to enquiries@cosu.com.au and the Connolly Suthers team will endeavour to respond to your enquiry within one business day.

You can request a free consultation here.

Where are your other offices located?

Our Brisbane office is located at 240 Queen Street, Brisbane.

Our Cairns office is located at 14 Spence Street, Cairns.

Our Ayr office is located at 180 Queen Street, Ayr.

We visit Mount Isa as well as other regions throughout North Queensland by appointment.