Many people are reluctant to think about making a Will as death is not a pleasant topic to consider, however making a Will or thinking about your estate is important to complete while you have the time and capacity to do so. It is important to understand though, that a Will is not the only document that may be required when making an Estate Plan.
When do you need a Will? If you are asking yourself this question, the chances are you already need a Will. A Will is an essential tool in ensuring that your property and assets will be divided in accordance with your wishes and provides clear instructions which is likely to make the process a lot easier for your loved ones upon your death.
If you do not have a valid Will at the time of your death, your assets will be divided according to the laws of intestacy and could mean that your property and assets may not go to the people you want.
A Testamentary Trust is a Trust created by your Will which will only commence upon your death and provides a hold on your assets so that an appointed Trustee can eventually distribute the assets to beneficiaries at such time as your trust provides (eg: upon the age of 21 years, etc).
Statement of Wishes
A Statement of Wishes is supplementary to your Will and whilst not legally binding, it can provide further information to your executor/s as to the administration of your estate.
Enduring Power of Attorney (Financial and Personal)
An Enduring Power of Attorney (Financial and Personal) is a legal document that authorises a person (the attorney) to act and make financial and/or personal decisions on your behalf. A financial power includes anything related to your finances or property whereas the personal power is in regard to your personal matters such as your lifestyle.
Appointment of Medical Treatment Decision Maker
A Medical Decision Maker is someone you have appointed who will be able to make decisions regarding your medical treatment when you are not capable of being able to do so yourself. The decision made need to be based on what they reasonably believe you would have decided if you could, regardless of whether they agree or disagree.
Advance Care Directive
An Advance Care Directive is supplementary to your Appointment of Medical Treatment Decision Maker and provides your Medical Decision Maker with a record of your wishes regarding your treatment.
How can Nevett Ford help?
Often we see people leaving arrangements too late after they have lost capacity or when they may feel under some form of pressure to make arrangements. Our team has extensive experience and expertise and can guide our clients through the preparation of Wills, Powers of Attorney and other Estate Planning documents. If you would like further information, please contact our lawyers specialising in wills at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +613 9614 7111.