|BASIC WILLS |
- Everyone should have one - at least a basic will. Dealing with the assets of a deceased person who does not have a will is difficult and expensive.
- It is easy to set up at least a basic will. If you don't want the expense of an elaborate will, start with a basic will and replace it later as your affairs become more complicated.
- We will help you set up a Basic Will for a low fee of $125.00 if you follow the Basic Will instruction procedure if all you want to do is one of the following.
- Leave your estate to one person or to be equally divided amongst two or more persons who survive you.
- Leave your estate to your spouse or partner but if he/she dies before you, to be equally divided amongst your children.
- Appoint one or more executors
- Simply divide your estate into shares (if more than one beneficiary)
- To sign a will. get two adult witnesses who are not executors or beneficiaries under the will, sign the will WHILST THEY ARE WATCHING IN YOUR PRESENCE and then have the two witnesses sign the will as witnesses (where indicated on the will). Date the will then keep it in a safe place or send it back to us to store.
- DISCLAIMER: With such a process, we will not know if there are other factors in your affairs which should be considered in a will. This service is not offered as a substitute for a full conference and discussion about your affairs, which we encourage. This service is offered to enable the establishment of at least a basic will rather than having none at all.
- BASIC WILL INSTRUCTION FORM: If you want such a will, fill out the Basic Will Instruction Form and note we need the full names of everyone involved. If you are leaving to children we suggest you do not name them but use the class description "children" ( note this will include all your children including adopted children, children by previous relationships and future children yet born) If you want to nominate some children and not others, DO NOT use this service. Get advice. See MORE ABOUT WILLS on this page.
- Executors: If you leave your estate to your spouse/partner, you may make him/her your executor. If you leave your estate to your children if your spouse/partner does not survive you, you must nominate ALTERNATE executor/s in that case.
|MORE ABOUT WILLS |
- FAMILY PROVISION ORDERS under Chapter 3 of the Succession Act 2006 - The entitlement for any person to apply for such orders should be a prime consideration in any will made. "Eligible persons" can apply to the court to have the provisions of a will changed by the court if they establish proper provision was not made by a person making a will (a testator) for the applicant.
- In other words, you can't just do what you want with your estate if you do not make proper provision for all "eligible persons". The court can change your will (usually at great expense to your estate) if you do not.
- "eligible persons" are defined in section 57 of the Succession act and include the obvious children and spouses of the testator but also less obvious granchildren, former spouses and other persons who may have been living in a dependent relationship with the testator at some time in their lives (eg step children).
- If you leave the black sheep son, Fred out of your will because he is a wastrel and doesn't ring you up anymore, you are asking for estate trouble.
- As more and more people have "complicated" lives in the present era, there are more and more eligible persons hanging around which you might have thought you were shot of years ago.
- Any will made with such potential should be made with proper legal advice.
- We are often asked, what is Probate? Simply put, it is a Supreme Court order validating a will put before the court as being the last and proper will of a deceased person.
- Once a Grant of Probate issues, the executor named in the will can deal with assets such as a house, bank accounts and shares to sell or transfer them.
- A grant of Probate is obtained by filing a summons with the Supreme Court accompanied by affidavit evidence re the death of the deceased, the will and other information. No court appearance is required for an uncontested application (most of them).
- The cost can be about $3,000 made up of a filing fee to the court of about $1,300, other disbursements of about $300 and legal fees of about $1,400 for an estate which may have a house and some other assets in it with a value of about $1,000,000 or thereabouts.
- Sometimes a grant of Probate is not required for small estates or estates where assets pass by right of survivorship, eg where a husband and wife own all the assets jointly and the first of them dies.
- Probate has nothing to due with Death Duties. There are no death duties anymore.