Wills & Estates

Wills

Having a properly prepared Will is one of the most significant tasks you will undertake in your life. Making a Will can be simple but for your Will to be valid, it needs to satisfy a number of legal requirements.

Our wills & estate planning team is highly experienced in the Will planning & preparation area. We are able to ensure that all vital requirements are fulfilled, and advise you on factors to consider, ensuring that upon your death, your estate is distributed in accordance with your wishes.

We also can make recommendations regarding:

  • enduring power of attorney
  • enduring guardianship
  • insurance
  • superannuation fund beneficiaries
  • establishment of trusts.

We will act on your instructions and put all necessary arrangements in place.

What assets are not covered by a Will?

  • Life insurance cover – Not available for disposition under Will if you have a beneficiary (other than your estate) nominated.
  • Superannuation – Not available for disposition under Will if you have a beneficiary (other than your estate) nominated.
  • Joint assets – pass to survivor – do you own your own home as a “joint tenant” or a “tenant in common”? – you should know!
  • Family trusts – not subject to will (but control of trust might be).

Frequently Asked Questions

How often and when should I review my Will?

At least every three years or immediately when there is a significant change in your circumstances. For example, a material change to your assets and liabilities, your close personal relationships, the birth of a child or setting up/selling a company or business.

Why use a solicitor to make a Will?

To ensure that your wishes and intentions on death are achieved. A solicitor may also look at your circumstances from a holistic estate planning perspective rather than a simple Will drafting exercise only. Some common mistakes in self‑made wills include failing to deal with potentially tax free superannuation (including life insurance), plus inadequately dealing with co‑owned property and family trust interests.

My affairs are very simple, why do I need a Will?

A Will if properly made is a legally binding document. Having a Will can reduce the cost, stress and delay on family members in administering even a simple estate. If you die without a Will, succession law in force from time to time will otherwise dispose of your estate and might not be what you intend [e.g spouse].

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