Story submitted by Andrew Taylor, Public Trustee and Guardian.
A valid, up-to-date and professionally prepared will is essential to protect your interests in the event of your death.
The Public Trustee and Guardian will present two free forums on October 22 (Tuggeranong) and 24 (Ainslie) on the importance of having a valid and up-to-date Will and Enduring Power of Attorney as well as aspects of substitute decision-making on loss of capacity. Bookings for these are essential. Call (02) 6207 9800.
Everyone over 18 years, with legal capacity, should have a Will. Failure to do so may result in extra costs and undesirable or unforeseen outcomes.
A Will should be reviewed to reflect changes in your circumstances such as marriage, birth of a child or divorce. Marriage revokes a Will unless the Will was made in contemplation of the marriage.
Entering a civil union or civil partnership will also revoke a Will unless it includes a specific expression of contemplation of the union.
Upon divorce, the spouse or civil partner will be treated as though they had pre-deceased the person making the Will and will not participate as beneficiary or executor.
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A person, of either gender, living as a partner with the deceased for over two years, will participate as a beneficiary under the laws of intestacy and may be able to bring an action for a greater share in the estate under the Family Provision Act 1969.
Unless there is a specific exclusion stated in the Will, the share of a deceased child of the person making the Will is automatically shared by the deceased child’s children.
Your Will should appoint an executor to administer the Will, to collect and deal with assets, to pay debts and to account to your beneficiaries in keeping with your instructions. You should choose your executor carefully.
For more information about our free forums, or to make an appointment to prepare your Will, contact the Public Trustee and Guardian on (02) 6207 9800.