No-one likes to think of death, whether it be their own death, or the death of a loved one. Yet, the reality of life is that at some stage we must deal with death.
However there are ways we can make it easier for others when we die, and the best way is to write a comprehensive will.
Your will is probably the most important document you will make in your life. Not only does a will ensure your property will be given to those persons you intend, a will can also appoint a guardian for your children, set up a family trust, ensure a business continues to operate and ensure your funeral is the way you want it.
Remember a properly drafted will should cover you for a lifetime and should take into account future contingencies such as starting a family, divorce or the death of a spouse.
When should I make a will?
As soon as you turn 18 is the ideal time. However you should definitely make a will if you marry, have children or gather significant assets.
What happens if I don’t make a will and I die?
If you die without leaving a will the state government could step in and administer your estate. They will distribute your assets based on a strict next-of-kin formula, so your assets could be given to family members you don’t like.
What is probate?
A Grant of Probate is formal permission from the Supreme Court of Victoria to distribute assets according to the will. If a person dies leaving more than $50,000 in solely owned assets, or leaving real estate then a Grant of Probate must be obtained.
Probate is a fairly complex process that requires the assistance of a solicitor. At Hilton-Wood solicitors we have many years experience in probate matters and have achieved very favourable outcomes for our clients.
I have been appointed executor in my parents will, what does that mean?
As an appointed executor it is your responsibility to ensure that probate is obtained and that the instructions of the deceased are followed. It is a position of great responsibility as you call the shots and make decisions concerning the estate.
A solicitor however, can assist you through the entire process to make the death of your parent or loved one less painful.
What is a Power of Attorney
A Power of Attorney is where you appoint someone, usually a trusted friend or family member, to make decisions on your behalf. Whereas the appointment of an executor in a will looks after your interests when you die, the appointment of a power of attorney looks after your interests when you’re alive, either immediately or if you can’t make decisions for yourself.
At Hilton-Wood Solicitors we can look after all your needs regarding wills, probate and Powers of Attorney. Call now for a competitive obligation free quote.