Why you need a will
- Preparing a will allows you to ensure your estate is directed to your family (or other beneficiaries) according to your preferred distribution. If you die without a will, your estate is distributed according to predetermined allocations outlined in legislation (intestacy provisions). Intestacy provisions may not be consistent with your wishes.
- If you have minor children you may take the opportunity in your will to restrict the age a beneficiary is to receive their share of the estate. For example, rather than children receiving inheritance at 18 years of age, you may specify they receive their inheritance at 21 or 25 years of age.
- Get some professional advice about your will. Your circumstances are unique and it is important to have individually tailored advice. Do it yourself will kits and websites may seem like a cost effective option, however, if there is a problem with the will it may not come to light until after your passing. When the will is needed, a DIY will can cause significant expense to your estate if the will is inconsistent, invalid or otherwise unclear.
- Estate planning involves more than just preparing your will. Professional estate planning includes the development of a comprehensive plan which considers all of your circumstances including, your family situation, your assets, your liabilities and the assets that may not form part of your estate such as superannuation. With the assistance of professional legal advice, estate planning may also include strategic planning regarding your asset ownership and consideration of binding death benefit nominations with your superannuation fund.
- Who to appoint as your executor is a key consideration when preparing your will. Preparing a will gives you the opportunity to appoint the person you prefer to be in control of your assets, your information (such as medical records) and any trusts created under your will. If you do not have a valid will there is a predetermined order of priority for people to apply to administer your estate. Preparing a will allows you to specify your preferred person to be the executor of your estate.
- Having a valid will can also assist with greater efficiency in the administration of your estate. More efficient estate administration may also be more cost effective, thus optimising the benefit to your beneficiaries. While you may not be around, delayed estate administration can have a significant and detrimental impact on your family.
Our team practices exclusively in Wills and Estate Law and are here to guide you through the estate planning process. If you require assistance with your estate planning or need advice regarding an estate related matter, we encourage you to call us on (07) 3025 9000 for an obligation free initial case assessment.