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Your basic estate plan explained

Do you know the answers to these questions?

  • Who will receive your assets if you die?

  • Who will be the legal guardian of your young children if you die?

  • Who will sign legal documents for you if you are mentally incompetent or unable to sign?

  • Who will make your health care decisions for you if you can’t?

  • Will your doctor follow your wishes regarding your end of life care?

  • Who will receive your superannuation death benefits?

  • Who gets your life insurance?

  • What will happen to your business?

  • Have you done tax planning?

If you do not know the answers to the above questions, you will likely have an incomplete or no estate plan.

What is a basic estate plan?

  • A will is the core document in your estate plan in which you instruct your executor how to distribute your assets on your demise and appoint a legal guardian for your minor children.

  • A testamentary trust is established to take care of assets you don't want to be transferred directly to your beneficiaries after your death. It is used to protect the inheritance, minimise tax and manage investments for beneficiaries incapable of doing so themselves.

  • An enduring power of attorney in which you appoint 1 or 2 designated persons to decide for you regarding financial, legal and property matters if you are unavailable or cannot make decisions because of mental incapacity.

  • An enduring power of guardianship in which you appoint 1 or more people to decide for you regarding your healthcare and personal choices if you cannot make decisions because of mental incapacity.

  • An advance health directive for your doctors regarding end of life medical care such as life support and similar important decisions.

  • A binding death benefit nomination regarding the payment of your superannuation death benefits.

  • Life insurance is often an important component of an estate plan.

  • A business succession plan will ensure that clear directions exist regarding the selling or passing your business to your heirs.

  • In Australia, there are no estate taxes; however, your estate assets may be taxed in other ways.

The most successful medical treatment is prevention. Preventative law catches problems before they escalate. Take a proactive approach and minimise the risk of litigation and unnecessary expenses - do your estate planning.

Click here to complete our online form and get a free will and estate planning assessment!

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