A Will is a very important document and needs to clearly identify what portion of your Estate will go to who after you die, while also considering an array of regulatory requirements.
Even a straightforward Will needs to do four things:
- appoint an Executor;
- sell or transfer all property after settling your debts;
- make adequate provision for all those people for whom adequate provision ought to be made;
- be dated, signed and correctly witnessed.
Wills prepared without first completing a full Estate planning process may not take into account all personal and family circumstances and may put at risk the value of the Estate, leading to costly legal disputes. An incomplete and/or incorrectly signed Will can result in the Will not being legally effective and thus unable to be administered completely or in part, when needed. It could also lead to the Estate being administered in a manner which was not intended.
If Tasmanian Perpetual Trustees is appointed executor of your Estate, your Will will be held in safe keeping free of charge.
Wills and relationships
A partner is usually someone who has lived with you continually for 2 or more years. It is important to seek professional advice in regards to your Will if you are in a relationship as your partner may have the same rights as a spouse if you die without a Will. Therefore, your partner might be the primary beneficiary if you die without a Will. A Tasmanian Perpetual Trustees Estate Planner can help you work through any questions you may have in these circumstances.
Wills and children
If you have infant children it is helpful to include your wishes on guardians for them should both parents die unexpectedly. It is also a good idea to consider at what age you would like your children to benefit from your Estate. For example, under Tasmanian law children receive assets at 18 years of age if you do not specify a later age. You may want to stipulate a later age or give discretion for earlier access to pay expenses for their education and their other life expenses.
Good planning can ensure that your children and family benefit from your Estate the way you intend.
For these reasons trying to make a Will without professional assistance or using a Will kit purchased from a Newsagent, for example, may cause problems or difficulties down the track. It is too important to leave it to chance and hope that the Will has been made in a way that achieves your desired wishes. It is far better to prepare your Will with experienced professionals or a Trustee Company like Tasmanian Perpetual Trustees, which has qualified and experienced Estate Planners.
Locating the Will
As the last Will provides the instructions that an Executor needs for administering an Estate, it is important to ensure that it can be located when needed. When you make a Will you should ensure that your relatives or close friends know where the Will is kept. If a safety deposit box is used, ensure that someone trusted has access to it (usually your Executor) and also place a copy of your Will with your solicitor, accountant or trusted friend. Tasmanian Perpetual Trustees will retain Wills in safe custody free of charge when you appoint Tasmanian Perpetual Trustees as the impartial Executor.
For more information about making a Will, Contact our expert Estate planners or make an appointment today.
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