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McDonald Johnson Lawyers

  • The team at MJ Lawyers are totally client focused

  • To expert Property, Business and Commercial advice

  • Celebrating 100 years of Service since 1916


McDonald Johnson has one of the largest property practices in the Hunter. We currently have three property law Partners and several employed solicitors working in this area of the law. Our advice and service in property law and its related fields has assisted with the success, happiness and growth of our clients.We do more than transfer property. We alert you to the diverse legal issues, such as stamp duty, CGT, Land Tax, depreciation and succession issue. These can be complex transactions and may have taxation implications or even family law repercussions. We will ensure that your dealings materialise on time, with no hidden problems.


Our commercial lawyers provide advice and assist with transactions involving most aspects of business and commerce.

We are often required to provide prompt advice and make recommendations upon which our clients can rely.

We are a full service commercial law firm. By this, we mean that we can provide advice and services for all aspects of commercial law. We draft and adapt general business and commercial documents including terms and conditions, warranties and disclaimers. We keep abreast of developments in case law and ensure that our documents are updated and adapted appropriately. Our documents protect the rights and minimise the liability of our clients. We are often called upon to prepare Discretionary Trust Deeds, Partnership Agreements, Unit Trust or Hybrid Trust Deeds, Joint Venture documentation, Development Agreements, Distribution Agreements and Engagement Contracts. Our lawyers have expertise in trust law, corporations law and contract law and will use other experts when required.


Many of our clients are engaged in commercial, residential or industrial building and construction projects, and we are able to assist them by providing advice at all stages of the construction process to ensure that they are able to minimise risk and fulfil their commercial objectives.

We understand the importance of providing quick and practical advice to our clients, and are able to assist them in relation to matters including:
Drafting Building Contracts
Ensuring that Building Contracts adequately protect their rights and consider matters such as the securities to be provided by the builder, retentions, liquidated damages, defects liability periods, practical completion and PC allowances.
Providing advice on the terms and conditions of Building Contracts and Contract negotiations
Assisting with the administration and implementation of Building Contracts
Providing advice concerning the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act
Providing advice concerning Development Consent, Construction Certificate and Occupation Certificate issues, and
Dispute resolution through litigation, arbitration, mediation and alternative dispute resolution techniques.


McDonald Johnson assists a diverse range of clients with Estate planning and related issues.
Our principal services in this area of the practice relate to drafting wills, including the establishment of testamentary trusts, preparing Powers of Attorney and Appointments of Enduring Guardians, assisting with the administration of Estates and applying for grants of Probate and Letters of Administration. We listen to our clients, advise them and make recommendations. When necessary, we encourage consultation with other professional advisors including Financial Planners and Accountants.

McDonald Johnson also has a large practice in Estate Litigation or Contested Estates. We represent Estates or Plaintiffs when a Will is being challenged or contested, and advise clients on issues concerning life insurance policies and superannuation entitlements.


Family and relationship law is a complex area which not only impacts on the social dynamics of the family consisting of parents and children, but can also have financial consequences.

At McDonald Johnson we pride ourselves in our expert knowledge of the various responses by the law in relation to the diverse range of family forms that now exist within our community. Additionally, we are mindful of the varying methods of dispute resolution which can be applied to a variety of different situations.

There has been rapid social change in Australia which has resulted in higher divorce rates, fewer marriages and a greater acceptance of same sex relationships. This has resulted in an increasingly diverse range of family forms existing outside the traditional nuclear family model.

McDonald Johnson can provide a fully rounded service designed to meet the needs of our clients in the area of family law and relationship law, in relation to disputes concerning both the care of children and property.

Family Dispute Resolution - Sonia Anderson, Partner, is a registered Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner. In most family law matters regarding children's issues, the parties are now required to participate in Family Dispute Resolution with a qualified Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner (FDRP).

If the dispute resolution process is unsuccessful, only a qualified FDRP is able to issue the certificate necessary to enable the parties to proceed to have a court determine their dispute.


McDonald Johnson Lawyers has extensive experience in the resolution of insurance disputes.

We can help you understand the terms of an insurance policy and explain legal concepts such as exclusion clauses and disclaimers.

Your rights under an insurance policy come from the Contract of Insurance itself, together with the common law and legislation concerning insurance, and we can advise you about all of these areas so far as they concern insurance claims.

We provide assistance with the following matters of insurance and compensation law:
Superannuation and Disability Insurance Claims
Negligence Claims
Medical Negligence Claims
Compulsory Third Party Insurance and Claims
Workplace Compensation Insurance and Claims

Sonia Anderson, Partner, is an Accredited Specialist in personal injury law.

McDonald Johnson Lawyers

14 Watt Street
Newcastle, NSW 2300
Phone: 02 4926 1944
Fax: 02 4926 4113



Professional Service:

Areas of Law

  • Commercial
  • Family Law
  • Personal Injury
  • Property & Conveyancing
  • Wills & Estates
  • Binding Finan Agreements
  • Building & Construction
  • Building Contracts
  • Business Law
  • Business Succession
  • Civil Law
  • Civil Litigation
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Common Law
  • Company Trusts
  • Compensation Law
  • Construction
  • Contract Law
  • Debt Recovery
  • Directors Duties
  • Elder Law
  • Environmental
  • family dispute resolution
  • Insurance Law
  • Intellectual Property
  • Leases
  • Liquor Licensing
  • Mediation
  • Medical Negligence
  • Parenting Arrangements
  • Powers of Attorney
  • Probate
  • Professional Negligence
  • Property & Land Law
  • Property Settlements - Complex
  • Public Liability
  • Same Sex Couples
  • Succession Law
  • Superannuation
  • Superannuation Total and Permanent Disability Claims
  • Total and Permanent Disability
  • Trusts
  • Wills & Estates - Disputed

Special Qualities

  • Mediation
  • Accredited Specialist - Commercial Litigation
  • Accredited Specialist - Personal Injury
  • Accredited Specialist - Property Law


Please call our Newcastle lawyers on (02) 4926 1944 to discuss your needs in more detail. Our team look forward to helping you.


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