Our Guide to a Deed of Release – What You Need to Know

Ensuring Corporate Documents' Enforceability - What to Know


Before signing anything, especially a legal document, you’ll need to know what you’re committing to once you ink your signature on it. This is especially true if you’ve ever been requested to sign a deed of release, which is a brief, legally binding document that people use to resolve a dispute or terminate an agreement between them. It ‘releases’ or discharges those involved from their previously agreed-upon obligations.

Even if you have no problems with signing a deed of release, it’s crucial to speak to a law firm in Brisbane about it, as there may have been a few things you missed in the fine print. It is essential to understand everything a legal document states and implies, primarily when it’s covered in complex jargon. Here’s what you need to know about a deed of release:

Why a Deed of Release Is Requested

A deed of release is necessary for a party to end a dispute or agreement, ensuring that either party cannot continue with it in any way. The deed of release prevents the other party from taking you to court or pursuing other legal methods against you once you have signed it, as it is meant to end a dispute or agreement effectively and legally.

Many entities use a deed of release in various situations. For instance, if you are an employer, you may want a recently resigned employee to sign a deed of release, which will prevent them from making any employment claims against you once they have formally left the company. Ultimately, a deed of release offers more clarity and guarantee into ending an agreement or dispute.

The Risks of Signing a Deed of Release

Although a deed of release sets parties free from an agreement or dispute, it can also limit their legal rights. As such, it is crucial to understand the rights you may be giving up when signing a deed of release, along with the consequences of doing so.

For instance, if you settle a dispute by agreeing that the other party will pay you a specific amount of money, a deed of release will limit you from requesting further payments from them, even if you believe you are rightfully owed the amount. To ensure you understand all the limitations involved, you’ll need to work with contract lawyers in Brisbane, which will help you sign yourself into a corner.

The Procedure of Signing a Deed of Release

When you and the other party sign a deed of release, it is vital to do it correctly. That involves inviting a witness to observe the signing, who must not be part of the deed. Companies who execute a deed of release must respect the rules and with the correct number of directors. There must be enough copies for each of the involved parties to sign, and one party must pass all copies of the deed to the other party after signing it. However, it is also possible for the deed to allow the parties to sign by ‘counterpart,’ where parties sign separate but uniform copies of the deed, which create a single binding document. 

It is standard practice for parties to scan and forward electronic copies of the deed to the other party through email. Once these have been signed, they will be sent, along with the original signed documents, by post.


A deed of release allows two parties to finalise and officially terminate a dispute or agreement, ensuring that there aren’t any problems that will revive the problem and cause complications down the road. By seeking professional legal help, you can understand the benefits and consequences of signing a particular deed of release.
GLG Legal is an innovative and ambitious Brisbane law group specialising in commercial and property law in Brisbane. We provide tailored solutions to our clients and represent various organisations from start-ups to publicly listed companies. If you’ve been asked to sign a deed of release, do not hesitate to contact us today for legal advice!

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