What to Consider When Preparing a Will
It is important to seek legal advice when preparing a Will to ensure that it is valid and legally binding. Consideration also needs to be given to your wider estate plan and any tax implications that may be in play.
When preparing for your appointment, there are several important things that you need to consider:
1. Your personal details: You need to provide your full legal name, address, and identification information (such as a driver’s license or passport).
2. Executor: You will need to name an executor for your Will. This is the person who will be responsible for carrying out your wishes after your death. This can be a family member, friend, or professional advisor. It is also prudent to name a substitute Executor, in the event your first Executor is unable or unwilling to act.
3. Beneficiaries: You will need to specify who your beneficiaries are, what they will inherit, and when. It is also prudent to consider substitute beneficiaries in the event a beneficiary does not survive you. You can name specific individuals, charities, or organisations as beneficiaries.
4. Assets: You should make a list of all your assets, including real estate, bank accounts, investments, and personal property. This will help ensure that all your assets are distributed according to your wishes.
Additionally, you should also include:
- Any superannuation member accounts, and the terms of any nomination you may have put in place.
- Any trust arrangements, the assets held by the trust, and your role in relation to the trust (i.e. trustee, director of company trustee, appointor, guardian, beneficiary}.
- Any company, the assets owned by the company, and your role in relation to the company (i.e. director, secretary, shareholder).
5. Debts: You should also make a list of any debts you owe, including mortgages, credit card balances, and other loans.
6. Guardianship: If you have minor children, you should name a guardian to take care of them in the event of your death. You may also consider additional provision around things such as where they live, schooling, etc.
7. Special instructions: If you have specific wishes for your funeral or burial, or if you want to donate your organs, you should include these instructions in your Will.
It’s also important to keep your Will up to date as your circumstances change. You should review your Will periodically to make sure it still reflects your wishes and make any necessary changes as they arise.
Contact Lewis Kitson Lawyers
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All information on this site is general information only, and does not constitute specific legal advice. Please consult one of our experienced legal team for specific advice relevant to your situation.