It is natural for us to put off making a Will, as it often involves dealing with our own mortality. However, for the problems it causes, it is worth devoting 2 hours of your time and some of your money to have your Will finalised and ticked off from your “to-do” list.
For the past 9 months, we had been advising a client and his spouse in relation to their Wills. Their Wills had been made 20 years ago before they had children and had now wanted to update them. However, they didn’t know where the original or even a copy of the original Wills were kept. Furthermore, the importance of the Wills was amplified by the fact that our client’s spouse was undergoing treatment for cancer; the prognosis was not good.
Very sadly for our client, his spouse did pass away. Unfortunately, their updated Wills were not finalised before she passed. During this difficult period, our client was subsequently faced with the following issues;
a. Where was his spouse’s last Will?
b. What would happen if he couldn’t find the Will?
Our client was to receive his spouse’s entire estate under her original Will, however, he was unable to locate it. If he could not find the original of her Will, by law, her estate would be split between him and their children. It would not all pass to him.
Luckily, by owning the house together as joint tenants, our client received full ownership of the house upon his spouse’s passing. Furthermore, his spouse’s superannuation was paid direct to him.
However our client’s deceased spouse still owned significant assets in her own name. As she did not have a Will these assets were split between our client and his children. His children being quite young took control of significant amounts of money.
By not having up to date Wills:
2 hours of your time now and some thinking can save significant worry and cost later.
Call us if we can assist you with your Wills and Estate Planning.