With the COVID-19 pandemic claiming thousands of lives worldwide, it has prompted many people, locally (and worldwide), to ensure their affairs are in order. Sweeping through the continents so swiftly, it has become a prime example that unfortunately we cannot plan for everything – but you can plan. You can take steps to protect yourself, your loved ones and your assets in the event that you are unwell and in the event of death. You can discuss how to get your affairs in order with an estate lawyer and is a step you should consider in any effect, if you are over the age of 18, despite whether your assets are minimal or not.
Making a last will
A will is a legal document that details how you want your estate (that is your assets, money and liabilities) to be dealt with upon your death. It indicates names of beneficiaries - those who are to inherit your estate, as well as who you have appointed as executor - the individual/s who will ensure that your estate is distributed according to your instructions.
Without a will in place causes difficulties and conflict for your family and loved ones in administering your estate and what happens may not align with your wishes. For instance, relatives who should receive a significant portion may get too little or they may miss out on a gift altogether and those that you do not wish to inherit, may be entitled to take from your estate.
Protect your assets now
Everyone should at least have an initial consultation to be informed of how things will work upon death in light of their specific circumstances so that you can make a fully informed decision on how you wish to protect your assets.
In today’s rapidly changing world, a will is somewhat of an ‘alive’ document and is therefore important that it is revised and updated. You can undertake reviews your current documents with your solicitor to ensure that your affairs are still in order as per your wishes. Unfortunately, with years passing, what we think our will provides for may not necessarily be so.
We encourage our client’s to give us a quick phone call with any question they may have in regards to their estate, which may save your estate paying out gifts that were no longer intended. Life is forever changing, and at a faster rate these days, which shifts the priorities you want your will to protect. Getting married, divorcing or having kids, for instance, will put you in a position to amend your will.
An Enduring Power of Attorney document should also be considered which deals with your affairs in the event that you alive but unable to administer your own affairs.
Though you can create a will anytime, in a time of crisis, such as a global pandemic, it has really shown the need and urgency to do so. Although thinking of death it is difficult for most, it is inevitable and turning your mind to it will protect and assist you and those dear to you in the long run.
Start planning for your future now. Contact an estate lawyer.
Find a reputable law firm in Cairns with Marino Lawyers today. Call us on 4081 6700 or click here to send a message, and let’s discuss how we can secure your assets in a way that aligns with your wishes.