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  • Gabriella Ferraro

Just a simple Will?

Updated: Nov 30, 2021

Written by Gabriella Ferraro

Edited by Dannielle Wright

Often clients will contact our firm to prepare or update their 'simple' or 'basic' Will.

Our response is always, "There is no such thing as a straight-forward and simple Will".

An effective estate plan considers a multitude of factors, all which contribute to a successful Will. If you were to prepare your own ‘simple Will’ and it was found to be invalid, expensive and complex legal issues can arise in the preparation of your estate. Having a professionally considered Will can avoid these problems whilst ensuring that your estate is distributed in accordance with your wishes.

When preparing your estate plan, we consider a diverse range of factors, including but not limited to -

  1. Your family dynamic;

  2. Your assets;

  3. How your assets are held;

  4. Any liabilities you may hold;

  5. Your plans for your future; and

  6. Your wishes after death.

Even if you -

  1. are part of a nuclear family, meaning two parents and their biological or adopted children;

  2. want to leave everything to your spouse; or

  3. want to share equally between your children, there are factors that may complicate your Will.

For example, you may hold assets and interests in property with another person, in a family trust, in a self-managed superannuation fund or in companies. These assets fall outside the scope of your Will. Instead, they are assets which need to be dealt with in your overall estate plan. The estate plan is integral to ensure that your assets are distributed after your death in the way in which you intend.

Planning your estate avoids the uncertainty and anxiety that can be placed on your spouse and children if you did not have a Will.

Once our clients understand that a "simple Will" is not so simple, we provide them with advice which allows us to work together to create a dynamic estate plan that suits their individual needs. This creates peace of mind and offers greater investment in your future and the future of your beneficiaries. One of the best investments is an investment in yourself. You have worked hard to accumulate the wealth that you have and it is important that those assets are dealt with appropriately and in accordance with your wishes after your death. The consequences of not understanding how your Will works and how your assets are dealt with on your death, could result in adverse complications for you and your family, including incurring unnecessary tax or other liabilities.

The information provided in this article is general advice only. Given that each situation is unique, we recommend that you contact our office if you are considering preparing your Will or estate plan. A member of our estates team can be contacted on (03) 9311 8911.

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