Part A – question (d)(4 and 5) – Money to be dealt with under a Power – Rule 55
‘Power money’ is where a law practice, approved clerk or an associate of the law practice is given a power or authority to deal with money for, or on behalf of, a person. Examples of power money can include power of attorney, grant of probate, guardianship order, or an authority to sign on a person’s bank account (whether alone or jointly).
Maintenance of the Register of Powers and Estates does not apply to an approved clerk, and power money does not apply to a barrister in New South Wales.
Record Keeping Requirements
The law practice or approved clerk must keep:
- a record of all dealings with the money to which the law practice, approved clerk or associate is a party; and
- all supporting information in relation to the dealings, in a manner that enables the dealings to be clearly understood.
Recording all dealings
Where a law practice has been given the power to deal with money for, or on behalf of a person, the Board suggests the law practice recording all dealings in a ledger style document.
The law practice or an approved clerk must keep the record, supporting information and the power or authority as part of its trust records. This means the practice should retain all bank statements, information supporting any withdrawal of trust money (including the payee and supporting invoices/receipts in relation to the payment) and cheque books (if any) for a period of seven years (Section 147(2)(d)).
In situations where two law practices or approved clerks are joint signatories of a bank (ADI) account and where there is only one bank statement, the law practices or approved clerks can, by agreement, allocate the task of record keeping to one law practice or approved clerk and ensure that the other law practice or approved clerk receives a copy of records at least monthly.