If you like to avoid conflict, stress and unnecessary expense – then the importance of a proper estate planning review and suite of documents, cannot be under-estimated.
Estate Planning - 8 Key Considerations
- Benefit from your wealth [home, investments, superannuation, trust interests, inheritances, businesses etc] (as opposed to an unworthy beneficiary, ex-spouse, the Australian Taxation Office or Trustee in Bankruptcy)?
- If you are hospitalized tomorrow, on heavy medication needing a back operation, who will pay your rates, instruct your rental property managers, authorize payment of health insurance accounts to ensure your operation can go ahead or maintain business dealings/contracts?
- Who among your siblings/parents, spouse or close family friend will decide where you will live, if your pet can stay with you, or other personal care options (religious outings, clothing, accommodation, make-up/hair/shaving) etc?
- Are you concerned about the pressure your spouse/children will face from in-laws, step-relatives or business partners to liquidate assets that you intended to remain as a capital growth asset for long-term benefit of family?
- Do you wish to choose your response to Advanced Health Care queries or leave this to chance?
- Have you considered who will care for your minor children if you cannot – and how you can minimize disputes causing them greater distress at a time when they need it least?
- Will your superannuation (and accompanying life insurance policy) be available to an ex-de facto’s child? (your step-child, despite separation)
- Can your former spouse to whom you pay spousal maintenance gain access to a portion of your estate?
If you have not thought of, nor addressed, any of these questions, then the simple answer is that you do not have an adequate Estate Plan (and this is just a sample of the many ...