Financial Management Services
NSW Trustee & Guardian can be appointed by a court or a tribunal to provide direct financial management services for people who have a disability that affects their ability to make decisions. It also provides support, authorisation and direction for people who have been appointed as private managers by a court or tribunal.
NSW Trustee & Guardian direct financial management
NSW Trustee & Guardian is appointed as the financial manager because a person:
- cannot manage their financial affairs on their own
- has no suitable informal arrangement in place to help them meet all their financial needs
- has no other suitable person willing to be legally appointed as their private manager.
The Supreme Court or the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (formerly the GuardianshipTribunal) must believe that appointing NSW Trustee & Guardian as financial manager is in the best interests of the person.
NSWTG provides a wide range of legal, technical, financial, disability and other services for financial management clients such as:
- day to day income and expenditure management
- protecting assets and legal rights
- facilitating the buying and selling of a home
- organising an adequate cash flow to pay bills
- liaising with financial and legal institutions
- managing a business
- making investments.
When a private manager is appointed by the Supreme Court or the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal to manage a person's financial affairs, it is NSW Trustee & Guardian's responsibility to oversee this role.
We will provide private managers with:
- information about the role and responsibilities of a private manager
- ‘Directions and Authorities’ documents, which give a private manager the authority to manage a person’s financial affairs
- authority regarding proposals and asset security
- oversight and monitoring to ensure duties are performed appropriately, within the Directions and Authorities, and that major deadlines are met and key activities completed.
How NSW Trustee & Guardian becomes involved
An application for a Financial Management Order is usually made to the Supreme Court Equity Division - Protective, or the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (formerly the Guardianship Tribunal) by someone with a genuine concern for the welfare of a person who is having serious difficulty managing their own affairs. In most instances, the applicant is a family member, friend, social worker or health care professional.
A Financial Management Order is a legal decision of the Supreme Court of NSW, the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal or the Mental Health Review Tribunal to appoint NSW Trustee & Guardian, or a private individual under the direction and authority of NSW Trustee & Guardian, to manage the financial affairs of a person.
NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal (formerly the Guardianship Tribunal)
NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal can appoint either NSW Trustee & Guardian as financial manager, or a private manager whose financial management will be subject to direction and authorisation by NSW Trustee & Guardian.
If a person is subject to a Financial Management Order made by NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal and they wish to have the order reviewed, application must be made to NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal with supporting evidence requesting a review.
For more information about the NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal or an application form for financial management or guardianship please visit their website.
Supreme Court of New South Wales
The Supreme Court can appoint NSW Trustee & Guardian as financial manager, or a private manager who will be subject to direction and authorisation by NSW Trustee & Guardian.
Application for a Financial Management Order is made by a summons, supported by an affidavit of the applicant and two medical affidavits. People making an application for a management order through the Supreme Court include family members, social workers and other interested persons. There is a filing fee which can be deferred or waived in the case of financial hardship. Hearings can be held and Financial Management Orders made within two to three weeks of lodgement of the summons in the Registry of the Equity Division - Protective of the Supreme Court.
Mental Health Review Tribunal
The Mental Health Review Tribunal can make a Financial Management Order appointing NSW Trustee & Guardian to manage the financial affairs of a person in a psychiatric hospital under the provisions of the Mental Health Act 1990. This decision is based on reports by hospital psychiatrists and social workers, and other relevant material.
For more information about the Mental Health Review Tribunal please visit their website.
How do NSW Trustee & Guardian and the Public Guardian work together?
NSW Trustee & Guardian and the Public Guardian work together to promote and protect the human rights of people with disabilities. Financial management focuses on managing the financial and property interests of clients, while the Public Guardian makes decisions about personal and lifestyle issues for clients.
For more information is available on the Public Guardian website
How NSW Trustee & Guardian manage the financial affairs of clients
NSW Trustee & Guardian provides a carefully and professionally planned financial management service designed to meet the lifestyle needs of clients, taking into account their views and available financial resources.
When clients and stakeholders contact NSW Trustee & Guardian they speak with a Client Service Officer. The Client Service Officers deal with all communication between the NSW Trustee & Guardian, its clients, and stakeholders. They are also the people who meet with clients and may visit them at home.
The Client Service Officers consult with clients regularly about their plans and needs for the future. Additional specialist professional services are available to assist on matters such as taxation, investments, legal services, disability issues and property. Where appropriate, external specialist advice is sought.
NSW Trustee & Guardian also performs the role of banker for people who reside in Department of Ageing, Disability and Home Care residences.
Review and Revocation of Financial Management Orders
If a client wants to review a Financial Management Order or have NSW Trustee & Guardian removed as financial manager they need to consult with the organisation that issued the Financial Management Order. This may be the Supreme Court (Equity Division - Protective), Guardianship Division, NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal or Mental Health Review Tribunal.
What information do you need to provide?
If you wish to have the Financial Management Order appointing NSW Trustee & Guardian revoked you will need evidence from an appropriate professional such as a medical practitioner, psychologist or social worker to show that you are capable of managing your financial affairs.
Can someone else take over the management of an estate?
A client may ask the Supreme Court or the Guardianship Division, NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal to consider appointing someone other than NSW Trustee & Guardian as the financial manager of their estate.
Who do I contact next?
You should contact the court or relevant tribunal to discuss this matter before making an application.
Supreme Court of NSW Equity Division Protective
Law Courts Building, Queens Square
184 Phillip Street
Postal address:GPO Box 3
Sydney NSW 2001
Telephone: (02) 9230 8111
Guardianship Division, NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal
Level 3, 2a Rowntree Street
Balmain NSW 2041
Ph: 1300 006 228
The Mental Health Review Tribunal
PO Box 2019, Boronia Park, NSW 2111
Telephone: 9816-5955, Freecall in NSW 1800-815-511
Financial Planning Unit
The Financial Planning Unit provides clients with a financial plan that is specific to their individual situation and needs. This followed the change in the Trustee Act in relation to the investment of funds to allow funds to be invested in a diversified manner according to the Prudent Person Principle. Our team has over 50 years combined experience in a variety of financial planning areas including technical, share markets, banks, and trustee companies.
NSW Trustee & Guardian financial plans are developed in consultation with the client, key stakeholders, client service officers and private managers as appropriate to ensure that each client’s needs and plans over the longer term are identified to devise an appropriate investment strategy.
Managing the financial and property affairs of a missing person
When a person goes missing difficulties can arise in the legal management of their financial and property affairs. Section 54 of NSW Trustee and Guardian Act 2009 enables an application to be made to the Supreme Court, after a person has been missing for at least 90 days, to declare the person missing and appoint a financial manager.
The Supreme Court can appoint a person (such as a family member) or NSW Trustee & Guardian to manage the property and financial affairs of the missing person. See Who do I contact next? above for Supreme Court contact details.
A protocol exists between NSW Trustee & Guardian and the NSW Police Force Missing Persons Unit which outlines how the agencies work together when a financial manager is appointed to manage the financial affairs of a protected missing person. This clear communication ensures that an estate can be returned to a person who is no longer considered missing.
The Family and Friends of a Missing Persons Unit provides counselling and support from trained professionals to families and friends of missing people. It is funded by the NSW Government and is part of the Department of Justice. They produce the guide Missing People: A guide for family members and service providers.