In Western Australia, the operation of a partnership is governed by common law principles and the Partnerships Act 1895 (WA) (“Act”). Section 7(1) of the Act defines a partnership as “the relation which subsists between persons carrying on a business in common with a view of profit”. Section 7(2) of the Act also states that “In deciding whether a partnership does or does not exist in any particular case, the court shall have regard to the true contract and intention of the partners as appearing from the whole facts of the case”.

The key characteristics of partnerships include the following (among others):

  • the partnership does not have a separate legal identity like a corporation and is represented by its individual partners;
  • the relationship between the partners is governed by a partnership agreement between the partners, such as their voting rights and rights to a distribution of profits;
  • the partners have unlimited joint and several liability for all of the liabilities of the partnership but may seek contribution from each other; and
  • subject to applicable law in certain circumstances, the partnership may distribute profits as it sees fit but each partner is taxed at his or her personal taxation rates.

Rowe Bristol Lawyers is experienced in advising clients with respect to all aspects of partnerships, including:

  • considering and advising on the suitability of a partnership structure to the circumstances of the client;
  • liaising with the client and the other partners in relation to the objectives of the partnership agreement;
  • drafting partnership agreement as instructed by the client and accepted by the proposed partners;
  • providing advice and representation with respect to a dispute between the partners;
  • commencing proceedings on behalf of a partner; and
  • defending an action commenced against the partners of the partnership.

If you require legal advice in relation to partnerships, please do not hesitate to contact us to arrange a meeting so that we may consider your specific circumstances.

The above information is provided as general information only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. The accuracy of this information may have changed from the date when it was published.