Avoid the wreckage...

Written on the 29 June 2010 by Warwick Gilbertson

Our litigation solicitors are often engaged in trying to solve problems after the event - a little like carefully picking through the wreckage after a car has gone over the cliff.

That is also why we have a team of passionately dedicated estate planners. Estate planning is all about creating structures to prevent the car from going over the cliff. It is about seeing problems in the future and putting in place a plan to avoid them for you and your family.

A Will is but a part of estate planning. It is a part of the plan to provide for people who are important to you. Why we have allowed Wills to be degraded in importance is beyond understanding. But, we have. There are very few people who enter the world of purchasing property without relying upon good legal or conveyancing advice. We rely upon the skill and care of solicitors or conveyancers to make sure the property we are purchasing is registered in our name and any problems attached to the property are either resolved or brought to our attention.

A Will is not about the purchase or sale of one property. It concerns and governs all of your assets. It is about the conveyance of your home, your investment property, your beach house, your investments, your shares, your business, your farm, and all of your personal property. And yet, we think that a Will is simple and have been told "No, that won't cost much."

"Well Joe, what do you want to do??" This is the typical question asked of the client when he or she presents themselves to make their Will. But, this is only the first stage of estate planning.

There needs to be a thorough investigation of what assets Joe actually owns and what assets he treats as his own but may be owned by another entity such as a company or family trust. There also needs to be a careful consideration of Joe's personal history. You see, Joe's been married before and has three children from that marriage. He now lives in a de facto relationship with Mary who also has two children from a former relationship.

" What's that got to do with my Will? Nobody ever asked me about this before."

Planning to achieve Joe's estate planning objectives is going to be difficult. We've only scratched the surface with the issues raised so far.

"But surely you only ask these questions if the person is extremely wealthy."

It is often more important that these questions are asked in modest estates than they are for people who have considerable wealth. The impact of a mistake resulting in a large liability to the Australian Taxation Office or resulting in a protracted Court case will have more affect on a small estate than on a large one.

To help Joe avoid a wreckage, we would recommend he fully identify potential problems of the future, and put in place a plan to avoid them for him and his family.


If you have any further questions about this topic or you'd like to discuss a related matter, please do not hesitate to call us on 1800 994 279 or email us. A member of our Wills & Estates team will endeavour to respond to your enquiry within 24 hours.

- Warwick Gilbertson
Partner, Wills & Estates Lawyer

Warwick Gilbertson - Wills & Estates Lawyer

Will Disputes in NSW


Author: Warwick Gilbertson

Contact Us Now

We respond in 24 hours or less

Please provide details regarding your matter so we can assist you

Enquiry Form

Fill out our enquiry form and we'll respond within 24 hours

Listen to the captcha
 
Publications

Why is due diligence doubly important when buying a franchise?

In our article 'Points to consider when selling your business' we discussed due diligence being an important step if you are a prospective purchaser of a business, as it can enlighten you as to risks and benefits of the business you were not otherwise aware of. The same applies if you are considering purchasing a business which is par...

Read More ...

Everything you need to know about medico-legal liability reports for medical negligence claims

Back > Medical Negligence Claims Everything you need to know about medico legal liability reports for medical negligence claims In medical negligence cases... what is a medico-legal liability report? A medico-legal liability report (also referred to as an 'Expert Liability Report') is a report prepared by a medic...

Read More ...

When does a smack go beyond reasonable discipline...and become an assault at law?

When does a smack go beyond reasonable discipline and become an assault at law? Corporal punishment is the use of physical force on a child for the purpose of control and/or correction with the intention of causing some degree of pain or discomfort. Hitting, smacking, spanking, belting, kicking, shaking, biting and forcing a child to stay ...

Read More ...

Drivers must give bicycle riders at least a metre of space

Drivers must give bicycle riders at least a metre of space From 1 March 2016, drivers who pass a bicycle rider must allow a distance of at least: 1 metre when the speed limit is 60km/h or less; and 1.5 metres when the speed limit is more than 60km/h. As long as a driver has a clear view of any approaching traffic an...

Read More ...

Does going to prison reduce the risk of reoffending when compared with a suspended sentence?

Does going to prison reduce the risk of reoffending when compared to offenders who receive a suspended sentence? The answer is no. A study published by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR) has found that Offenders given a suspended sentence are less likely to re-offend than those given a prison sentence of up to 12...

Read More ...

| 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 | Next


Events
Blogs
"Thank you Natalie and Jill for great, professio...

Gina H

Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation

enquiries@turnbullhill.com.au