Pre-nup Overruled On ‘Needs’ Basis

Pre-nup Overruled On 'Needs' Basis

The High Court of England & Wales has nullified a pre-nuptial agreement between a wealthy heiress and her impecunious husband, because the now ex-husband needs GBP1.2 million to re-house himself.

The wife (Victoria), is the 36-year-old daughter of a wealthy businessman, and she had already been given a house by her parents when she married her husband (Francesco) in July 2005.

Even at the time, Victoria’s father thought Francesco was marrying her just for her money. So her father insisted that they sign a pre-nuptial property agreement to protect Victoria’s money and the assets which her father planned to give her on her marriage.  The agreement stated that Victoria’s separate property and family gifts shall remain hers and Francesco shall not make any claim on them.

There was also a reciprocal clause that Victoria would make no claim against Francesco’s separate property, except that it did allow her to pursue him for maintenance if the marriage broke up. Francesco was allowed no such right. This clause proved significant in the subsequent divorce settlement, as it showed (according to Francesco’s lawyers) that the agreement was unfair to him – even though he had had independent legal advice before signing it.

Details

Business Succession Planning

Business Succession Planning

Think about how much time and effort you put into building your successful business, and then imagine what would happen to your achievement if you failed to plan for the future.

Without a solid business succession plan in place, your company could quickly crumble upon your retirement or death, resulting in much heartache and potential loss of value for your family members and employees.

Fortunately, the Adelaide estate planning lawyers at Genders & Partners can help you navigate this complex area of law so that you can have peace of mind about the long term future of your business.

What Happens When You Do Not Secure a Business Succession Plan in Adelaide?

Business owners put off creating a succession plan for many reasons. They may fear death and not want to talk about the inevitable. They may also be reluctant to give up control of the business during their lifetime, or they may have difficulty choosing a successor among their children or other family members. Even when it is understood who the successor will be and how the business is to be handled, failure to legally document your wishes often results in contention and costly mistakes.

Details
Genders and Partners

The Importance of Updating Your Will And Estate Plan

The Importance of Updating Your Will And Estate Plan

At a minimum, your estate plan includes a Will and some powers-of-attorney. These documents are NOT set & forget. They are snapshots of your intentions at that point in time.

The older these documents are when they need to be used, the greater the risk of a successful challenge to them, when you will not be able to defend your decisions. It’s all about Risk Management.

If you have a proven track record of reviewing and confirming or amending your estate planning documents and keeping them up to date every 3-5 years, there is a much reduced risk of interference with your wishes.

Details
Genders and Partners

What Is A Will Worth?

What Is A Will Worth?

Several times each week, my phone rings, and someone asks me the question: “How much do you charge to make a simple Will?”

I always answer honestly, and provide as much detail as I am able.  I try to ask some questions to inform my understanding of their situation.  Some people resist this type of discussion – they think they know what they want, and now are simply shopping on price.

I can’t help those people.  They don’t want what I have to offer.  They aren’t looking for sensible, practical advice.  They aren’t interested in education. They refuse to consider the possibility that they are not asking the right questions. Their minds are closed.

It’s as if they have diagnosed their own illness, and written their own prescription.  They don’t want a doctor to ask them questions or form an independent assessment of their needs.  They just want the pharmacist to fill the prescription with a minimum of fuss and expense.

Best of luck to them, and to their families. I think they’ll need it.

Details
Genders and Partners

Adelaide Lawyer: Becoming An Estate Executor

Becoming An Estate Executor

Has a friend or loved one named you in his or her Will as executor of their deceased estate? If so, you may be confused about your responsibilities and fear that you are not up to the task.

You may be overwhelmed, but the Adelaide probate and estate administration lawyers at Genders & Partners are here to put your mind at ease about your role as an estate executor.

These are some of your main responsibilities when you are named the executor of a deceased estate:

Locate the Will: Hopefully the original Will is often located at the lawyer’s office, but it could actually be anywhere, including among the deceased’s important papers. When you find the original Will, you should take great care not to alter it in any way.

Details
Genders and Partners

Estate Planning for Blended Families

Estate Planning for Blended Families

The term “blended family” refers to a cohabitation relationship in which one or both partners have children from previous relationships. People are often unaware, particularly in cases of unmarried couples and same-sex couples, about what they are legally entitled to when their partners die.

Having children from various relationships just adds to the confusion and often results in unintended consequences —even ex-spouses in some cases making claims against the estate. That is why you need the estate planning assistance of our seasoned estate planning team at the oldest law firm in South Australia.

At Genders & Partners, we will carefully study your family dynamics and help you work out a plan for the distribution of your estate that gives you peace of mind.

Details