Is Your Will Current?
Unlike many areas of life, you can strategically plan your Estate to ensure you retain control over your assets both now and in the hands of future generations. At the heart of any Estate Plan is a Will. A Will may be the most important document that you ever sign, as it directs who will receive your wealth when you die. It is important to realise that, as financial and family conditions change over time, your Will should be reviewed regularly.
Of course, many people forget to update their Will – including Heath Ledger! Even though Heath signed a Will in 2003, he did not update it following the birth of his daughter Matilda in 2005, which left the family in a difficult situation with Heath’s estate going to his parents and sister, without any distribution to Matilda.
If this situation had taken place in Queensland, Matilda would have be entitled to his entire estate (because Heath passed away without a partner) but only if her guardian applied to the Supreme Court to make a challenge on her entitlements, which were not provided for in Heath’s Will. It would also cost at least $30,000 and more than a year battling the legal system, which for Matilda would have only been a fraction of Heath’s $16 million+ estate, but for the everyday person, the burden would be far greater. Brisbane Wills and Estates solicitors are trained to help you keep on top of your will, but at the end of the day it is reliant on your input for when something changes.
But what if Heath didn’t want to give his entire estate to Matilda after all? Would the outcome truly reflect his wishes?
Each situation is unique as every family has different requirements. The risks associated with not having an effective plan are real and significant. Once misfortune has struck, families are at the mercy of strict legislation that dictates what happens with their assets. So if you would like to give your family certainty, contact Coronis who offer Wills & Estate Planning through Chilli Law.