New relationships can make us feel “all loved up” and whilst the excitement of that feeling is one to soak up there are a few practical things to consider to make things smoother for those you love should there be some bumps in the road.
Brian is divorced and in his 60s and was lucky enough to meet the next love of his life June, a widow in her 50s. Both Brian and June have adult children from their previous relationships and have their own homes, significant cash savings and share portfolios.
Brian and June wish to preserve their independent financial positions should this not be their next forever relationship. They agree they will each retain what they brought into the relationship and then divide equally anything they acquire together. Brian and June can enter in a Financial Agreement that will give effect to their wishes. As circumstances change over years, both Brian and June should review their agreement so it still reflects their wishes.
Whilst Brian and June trust each other, they wish to ensure that their children are provided for and participate in managing their individual affairs should they lose capacity or pass away. Both Brian and June could consider making Enduring Powers of Attorney that appoint each other and their children to make decisions about their financial, personal and health matters. This power could be exercised jointly.
Brian and June could also consider entering into a contract for Mutual Wills, where they promise to not change their Wills in the future. The Mutual Wills could then follow the same terms as the Financial Agreement, leaving the property they owned at the start of the relationship to their own children, then sharing between all children the jointly owned property once both Brian and June pass away.
If Brian and June have not yet accessed their superannuation entitlements, they may consider making a binding nomination for their children to receive their interests, independent of their Wills.
With the right legal advice, Brian and June can protect their interests.