NC2020 – P2 – Conflicts in SMSFs – Estate Planning & conflict – what have the cases taught us?

This recording was presented at the SMSF Association National Conference 2020 on the Gold Coast by Scott Hay-Bartlem, Partner from Cooper Grace Ward.


Trustees of SMSFs have discretion in deciding to whom to pay a death benefit – or do they? Recent years have seen this discretion practically eroded, and this can cause complications for getting the death benefit to the intended recipient.

Conflicts of interest are being frequently raised at death benefit payment time but with proper planning and care in the payment process these can be managed.

This session will look at the established cases, what advisers should be doing at death benefit planning stage to manage conflicts and what the impact of these conflicts can be when paying a death benefit.

And is there another level of conflict with SMSFs that hasn’t been explored in the cases yet – will you be the case we are talking about at next year’s conference?


This recording will provide participants with knowledge and application to:

- Understand and identify conflicts that may occur in the death benefit payment process from SMSFs
- Understand the impact of conflicts on making death benefit payments from SMSFs
- Know the possible steps to take when planning for how death benefits will flow from SMSFs to minimise conflicts
- Become aware of other conflict issues with making death benefit payments from SMSFs


Knowledge Area:
Benefit Payments, Taxation
CPD Hours:


Scott Hay-Bartlem SSA

Scott is a partner in Brisbane law firm Cooper Grace Ward.

He and his team specialise in assisting clients and their other advisers including lawyers with tax and superannuation advice; estate planning, administration and disputes; business structuring; business succession arrangements; asset protection and restructuring. Scott has a particular interest in how these areas intersect with self-managed superannuation funds and the impact of and on these structures.

He is a SMSF Specialist Advisor™, a Chartered Tax Adviser, a member of the Society of Trust and Estate practitioners, and an Accredited Adviser with Family Business Australia.

Scott been selected by his peers for inclusion in the Ninth Edition of Best Lawyers in Australia in the practice areas of: Superannuation Law, Trusts and Estates and Wealth Management / Succession Planning Practice."

He has a Bachelor of Laws (Hons) and a Bachelor of Business (Accy) from the Queensland University of Technology. Scott also has also completed the Certificate of Superannuation Management and the Diploma of Superannuation Management run through ASFA and Macquarie University, and the Foundation Diploma of Financial Planning.