Are your loved ones adequately provided for? Is your Will in place? Have you considered a Power of Attorney and Guardianship appointments? With Christmas fast approaching and 2020 just around the corner, making it your new years’ resolution to get your estate plan sorted will ensure peace of mind and comfort in times of uncertainty.
It is surprising how many of us do not have an up-to-date Will - despite knowing exactly how we would like out estates to be distributed or who we would like to look after. Having a Will in place provides protection and certainty for family members on the wishes you want carried out after your death.
In addition to creating certainty:
- there may be significant taxation advantages for beneficiaries where an estate plan is drafted in a particular manner (for example, where there is significant wealth or where beneficiaries are under some form of disability)
- a carefully considered and documented estate plan may also avoid unnecessary tension and costly estate litigation down the track.
As well as contemplating what is to happen on death, an effective estate plan should anticipate what may happen in circumstances where you are no longer able to make decisions for yourself. It is critical that consideration be given to the appointment of an enduring power of attorney (giving someone else the power to make decisions regarding your legal and financial affairs) and an enduring guardian (allowing someone else to make health and lifestyle decisions on your behalf).
These appointments need to be carefully considered with your legal, financial and accounting advisors as part of your business succession plans.