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We want the Governing State of the trust to be Queensland, even though none of the parties to the deed live there. This is not just because there is no stamp duty on a deed settling a trust in Queensland, but the parties are hoping to acquire land in Queensland at some later stage. Is this possible?

For a trust to be subject to Queensland law (and to be exempt from stamp duty according to Queensland law) the trust deed effectively needs to be executed (signed) in Queensland. It doesn't matter that the trustee will later acquire property in Queensland - what is important is the situation at the time the trust is set up.

For example, if the parties to a trust were in either WA or NSW, it would be appropriate to look at the stamp duty laws of both of these states.

Therefore, if the first person signing the trust deed does so in NSW, the deed will be liable to stamp duty in NSW. If the the first person signing the trust deed does so in WA, the deed will be liable to stamp duty in WA. Otherwise, if it is executed in Queensland, it will be subject to Queensland law, and exempt from stamp duty under Queensland law. Refer S.58(1) of the Duties Act 1997 (NSW), and S.16 and S.17A of the WA Stamp Act 1921.