No one wants to think about dying, however it is vital to take proactive steps to ensure that your loved ones are provided for in the way that you want.
An Executor is appointed under your Will to carry out your wishes after you have passed.
You should think carefully about who would best serve as your Executor as they are responsible for defending your Will, particularly if there is a challenge or dispute over your Will.
The maximum number of Executors you can appoint is four, however most commonly, people appoint two people to be their Executors.
Our dedicated Toowoomba lawyers will walk you through the range of issues that need to be considered when deciding who will receive your assets.
For example, you will need to give consideration for blended families (where one or both of the parents are in a second relationship). Careful drafting of your Will can ensure that your children and step-children are treated exactly as you wish.
Careful consideration also needs to be given to who you nominate as your beneficiary under a superannuation policy or life insurance policy. There will be occasions when a binding nomination is advisable. This is a potentially complex area of estate planning and careful consideration needs to be given to a variety of factors before you can make an informed decision.
Estranged Family Members
You must give careful consideration to a member of your immediate family who has been estranged from you for a period of time.
If you leave out a family member of your Will who has been a dependant of you has been left out of your Will, that person may have a right to challenge your Will in Court in certain circumstances. A carefully prepared Will might just save the people you leave behind a significant amount of grief and legal expense.
The law provides that your children cannot generally receive their share of your estate until they are at least 18 years of age.
Your Will should stipulate how old you want your children to be when they receive their share of your estate. If you do not state this then your children will, by Queensland law, receive their share at 18 years of age.
Sometimes there are cases where people want their children to be older before they receive some or all of their share. We will talk you through all of your options so that you can make an informed decision that you are comfortable with.
A Child or Beneficiary Under a Disability
If you have a beneficiary who has a disability or perhaps has a condition which concerns you such as alcoholism, it will be necessary to consider whether a special protective trust should be utilised. This means that you can appoint a person whom you trust to manage that beneficiary's share so that the share is not received in one lump sum. For example, it would not be desirable for an alcoholic to receive a significant amount of money from a deceased estate as that could have dire consequences on that person's health.
Storage of Your Will
Your Will is one of the most important legal documents you will ever sign in your lifetime.
We offer free and secure storage of your Will in our Safe Custody facility in Toowoomba.