Estate planning is an incredibly important part of growing older. Not only does this outline your plans for assets after your death, but ensures loved ones are taken care of in exactly the way you intended. Here, we break down the common misconceptions of estate planning.
1. Estate planning is for the old
A common misconception with estate planning is that you need to be of a certain age to start setting out provisions for after your death. This couldn’t be further from the truth – in fact, over half of Australian adults don’t have a Will, according to Finder research.
Regardless of your age and the size of your estate, it’s still a great idea to have some form of Will in place. Life is never guaranteed, and we never know what’s around the corner. Having a Will in place means that your family will know exactly what to do after you pass, including funeral arrangements and provisions for your assets, no matter how small.
2. You can have multiple Wills
Not only is having multiple Wills incredibly confusing for your family, but it invalidates the contents of the plan itself. This is because numerous Wills may have different wishes outlined in them, indicating doubt. In some cases, making too many Wills could be a sign of lacking testamentary capacity. If there isn’t a version of the Will dated close enough to the date of death, a Court may pronounce the deceased as dying intestate, and divide the assets as outlined in the Succession Act 2006 (NSW). This Act defaults the estate to the deceased’s partner, or children, followed by parents, siblings and grandparents.
3. Wills are only for after you pass
Many people use their Wills to direct their loved ones of their wishes if they’re unable to make decisions for themselves due to injury or degenerative illness. A Will and Advance Care Directive tells your loved ones exactly what your expectations are in terms of treatment and medical care including orders to not resuscitate or cease medication after a certain stage of declining health.
When it comes to challenging the division of an estate, it’s vital to reach out to expert legal professionals to help with your case. For more information, get in touch with the team at Gerard Malouf & Partners Will Disputes Lawyers.