Rachel O’Donnell

Special Counsel

Qualifications: LLB, MTax



Rachel has over 15 years of experience advising on tax law and specialises in stamp duties, land tax and other tax issues in all Australian states and territories.

Rachel has significant experience advising large listed and unlisted corporates, high net worth individuals and small to medium enterprises. She is familiar with the operation and technicalities of various stamp duties regimes and land tax regimes.

Rachel’s clients include major international and national companies / groups in the property development, property funds management, infrastructure, superannuation and retirement living / aged care industries.


  • Stamp duty and land tax implications associated with mergers and acquisitions (including drafting advice, preparing due diligence reports for vendors and purchasers, and compliance / lodgment obligations);
  • Corporate group restructures, including corporate reconstruction relief from stamp duty;
  • Landholder (and previous “land rich”) and “trust look-through” duties;
  • The implications of foreign purchaser additional duty and land tax absentee owner surcharges, including advice regarding classification of structures and characterisation of land, and numerous successful applications for exemptions from these surcharges.
  • Aggregation of properties and corporate groups for land tax purposes;
  • The land tax treatment of trust structures (including the different statutory regimes throughout Australia and, in particular, the unique Victorian provisions);
  • Stamp duty and land tax exemptions and concessions for charities, retirement village operators and aged care providers; and
  • Other exemptions and concessions including superannuation specific exemptions, exemptions from stamp duty for changes of trustee and in specie distributions of property to beneficiaries / unit holders, and primary production exemptions from land tax.

Latest thinking

Thinking | 16 Jan 2020

Tax relief for bushfire victims and tax deductibility of donations

The federal, Victorian and New South Wales governments have now announced a raft of tax relief measures to ease the pressure on individuals, families and businesses affected by the 2019/20 Australian bushfires. In this article we outline those measures and discuss the availability of tax deductions for those looking to make donations to help those affected.