By Gabriella Ferraro
Your Will is a legal document that sets out your wishes for the distribution of your assets after your death. A clear, current and valid Will is the best way to help ensure your assets are protected and distributed to your loved ones. Whenever there is a change to your personal circumstances, you should consider whether you need to update your Will as well.
Q: What happens if you don’t have a Will?
A: If you die without a Will, State laws determine who will benefit from your estate. This is called ‘dying intestate’. These rules apply to everyone and will not take into account your wishes or situation.
Q: How can Ferraro & Company Pty Ltd help?
A: Apart from drafting your Will, our office can help if:
- Your financial affairs are complicated;
- You want to leave someone out of your Will who expects to benefit;
- You want to gift a significant number of gifts;
- You or your partner have children from a previous relationship;
- You want to leave your assets to a beneficiary with special needs; or
- You have substantial assets.
Reasons to update your will
When your circumstances have changed, you should consider updating your Will. For example if your relationship status has recently changed, you have bought or sold a significant asset like a home or business, you have a new addition to your family or you want to appoint a new Executor.
Things to consider
Your Will is the most important document you’ll ever need to prepare so it is important that you take the time to consider your personal circumstances, your family (including pets), your property and possessions and how you might want to distribute your estate.
When you write a Will, our firm will help you consider the following:
1. Appointing an Executor
An Executor is the person you appoint to carry out the wishes in your Will and is personally responsible for managing your estate.
2. Nominating a Guardian
In your Will, you can nominate a Guardian to care for your minor children under 18 years of age. When choosing a Guardian it is important to consider their lifestyle, values, religious beliefs, relationship with your children and their location. It is equally important to determine if they are physically, financially and emotionally capable of taking on the task of being a Guardian to your children.
3. Funeral Instructions
We recommend you consider your funeral arrangements.
4. Safely storing your Will
After you have written or updated your Will, you should store the original Will in a safe place. Our office offers a service to store your Will and other important documents in a safe place.