John has 30 years’ experience working primarily in the areas of property and commercial law. He is increasingly involved in start-up businesses and advising on their feasibility, as well as their legal and commercial requirements. John has always had strong relationships with real estate agents, advising on the regulation, succession and the new businesses that estate agents are operating.

He also has considerable experience in acting for real estate agents who run franchise businesses. Regarding property, he has been involved in due diligence, subdivision, off the plan and establishing joint ventures for property developments.

John’s work principally focuses on:

  • all aspects of services relating to business growth through mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures;
  • real estate and commercial property, including subdivisions;
  • corporate structures, shareholder agreements and disputes;
  • family business structures and disputes;
  • asset protection; and
  • advising the real estate industry on structuring, licensing, commission recoveries, succession and buying and selling businesses.

John’s client list is strong and contains some of the biggest and most well-regarded real estate agencies in Australia. He has the only real estate agent practice of its kind in Australia.


John’s recent experience includes:

  • the coordination and sale of various substantial distribution businesses
  • the sale of a high rise apartment development from planning to settlement for overseas Property Group
  • the conversion of a real estate group into a franchise
  • legal management of the leasing portfolio for a client leasing properties Australia-wide
  • advising on various licensing and regulatory issues for estate agents
  • completing various sales and purchases of real estate businesses including rent rolls

Professional Recognition

  • Finalist – Commercial Team of the Year, Lawyers Weekly Australian Law Awards 2023

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Latest Videos & Podcasts

April 2023: John Turnbull, Partner, talks PropTech and shares considerations for the commercial and legal issues you are likely to face when you sell your PropTech business.

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Memberships & Associations

  • Law Institute of Victoria
  • Melbourne Football Club
  • Melbourne Cricket Club


  • Bachelor of Laws, Monash University
  • Bachelor of Jurisprudence, Monash University
  • Specialisation: Accredited Business Law Specialist, Law Institute of Victoria

Jurisdictions Admitted to Practise

  • Victoria
  • All federal jurisdictions