When you pass away, that property which you own jointly with your spouse becomes your spouses sole property by way of survivorship. However all of the property which you own independently of your spouse becomes known as your “estate.”
 
Wills are primarily designed to appoint someone to manage the distribution of your estate and to record your wishes as to how you want your property to be dealt with. This person is called your Executor.
 
Making a will is your chance to choose who that person is – if you die without a will, then there are default laws as to who will be in charge of managing your estate.
 
It is important that you exercise your opportunity to choose who your Executor is and that you choose someone who you trust to fulfil this role so that you may have peace of mind that your property will be dealt with according to your wishes once you pass away.
 
If you have a TRUST, it is imperative that you have an appropriate WILL in place. Please CONTACT US if this is not the case.

 

Specific Aspects of Wills:

Guardianship
If you have children, it is important that you make a will to specify who you wish to have guardianship of your children if you were to pass away before they are grown up. For parents, a will is crucial as it gives you the ability to have control over the future wellbeing of your family, and thereby once again grants you peace of mind.

Power of Appointment
If you have a Trust, your Trust Deed will specify who has the power of appointment of new Trustees, and who can remove current trustees. This power is crucial as it determines who is in control of the Trust’s assets. If it is you that has this power, there needs to be a provision in your will to pass the power of appointment onto someone you trust when you die.

Specific Gifts
In your will, you can record specific gifts of property that you wish to make. For example, there may be a piece of jewellery that you wish to pass on to someone in particular. You can make as many specific gifts as you want, and these gifts can include specific gifts of money rather than chattels.

Forgiving Debts
In your will, you can forgive debts that are owed to you. This is particularly important if you have a Trust, which owes you money due to the conveyance of property into your Trust. By forgiving the debt which your Trust owes you in your will, you ensure that the full value of that property is protected by the Trust.

Your Funeral
Your will is a good place to specify any wishes you may have as to how your funeral is to be conducted, and whether you wish to be buried or cremated.


 

Powers of Attorney

There are a number of different powers of attorney that can be implemented for clients, and the process of choosing what is sensible is not necessarily a quick one.  We have developed a template to help guide you through the process to make the right decisions regarding who you are choosing as your attorney, and what powers and restrictions they will have.

The common powers of attorney used are:

  • Non-enduring power of attorney over property;
  • Enduring power of attorney over property;
  • Enduring power of attorney regarding care and welfare; and
  • Deed of delegation power of attorney (which is important in regards to trustee duties).

The team at Prudentia Law are experienced at dealing with wills in a professional and sensitive way. Making the kind of decisions that a will requires (for example, who will care for your children) can be difficult and sometimes an upsetting task. Rest assured that we are here to support you and help you through that process.

Please contact us if you would like to implement any of these or need some guidance on what is involved.