Dont Neglect the Softer Side of Estate Planning

Rod Genders Podcast Episode #2: Don’t Neglect the Softer Side of Estate Planning

Dont Neglect the Softer Side of Estate Planning

A long time ago (1983 actually), Sean Connery came out of 007 retirement to make an unofficial James Bond movie called Never Say Never Again. In one scene he pretends to be a masseur at a health spa, and suggestively says to Kim Basinger: “Hard or soft … massage?”

This movie-line must have stuck in my brain all these years, because it suddenly seemed like a good way to highlight some important considerations in modern integrated estate planning – Hard or soft … estate plan?

What is the Softer Side of Your Estate Plan?

Identify, document and share your wishes for end-of-life care, the care of your pets, the custodianship of your special assets, who your carers will be, where will you live if you lose your independence, and more.

Genders and Partners Dementia will soon become Australia's Leading Cause of Death

WARNING: Dementia will soon become Australia’s Leading Cause of Death

Genders and Partners Dementia will soon become Australia's Leading Cause of Death

Dementia deaths in Australia have steadily increased over recent years. In 2013, dementia became Australia’s second leading cause of death, overtaking cerebrovascular diseases (strokes) for the first time.

In 2014 and 2015 the number of dementia deaths have continued to rise.

Ischaemic heart disease has been the leading cause of death in Australia since early in the 20th century, but while the rate of death from heart disease was at its worst around 1970, it has steadily declined since then.

Dementia is not one specific disease. There are many types, including Alzheimer’s and Vascular Dementia, which are each collections of symptoms caused by disorders affecting the brain, with severe effects on thinking, behaviour and quality of life. These diseases add greatly to the burden of illness and injury in the Australian community.

Critical Importance of Making a Will to Protect Children’s Inheritance From Previous Relationships

Critical Importance of Making a Will to Protect Children From Previous Relationships

Blended families include children form previous relationships (step-children).  They are growing quickly in number, but many people do not stop and think about the implications on children from previous relationships if they die without a Will.  It is a dangerous assumption that the law will automatically protect your biological and step children, as numerous scenarios can preclude or reduce the amount that they receive after you die if you do not seek the counsel of an experienced Wills lawyer in Adelaide.

What Happens If You Die Without a Will?
South Australian law provides that, depending on the size of your estate, your children from previous relationships may receive nothing if you die intestate. For estates valued at less than $100,000, the entire estate goes to the surviving spouse or domestic partner unless a valid Will is in place. For larger estates, your spouse is entitled to the first $100,000, your personal belongings and half of the estate’s balance.  Without litigation, at best your children will receive equal shares of the remaining balance (if any).

Family Disputes and Legal Documents in SA

Family Disputes and Legal Documents

Families aren’t always easy. We’re bound to them by blood and history, circumstance and duty. We love them, and sometimes, if we’re really lucky, we like them too. We rarely get to choose them.

At some point in our lives almost all of us will experience some challenging times in dealing with individuals in our family.

It could be the consequences of dealing with misfortune such as illness or unemployment.

It could be your son’s unfortunate choice of girlfriend.

Maybe someone has an inflated sense of entitlement & expectation, or is lacking in appreciation for what you’ve done for them.

Genders and Partners Hurricane warns about risk planning

Hurricanes warn about risk planning

Genders and Partners Hurricane warns about risk planning

We all like to think of ourselves as resilient and adaptable to change. But all too often we only visualise ‘change’ of our own making, in our own good time.

It’s quite a different thing to deal with change that is forced upon us by outside forces.

The newsfeeds have been full of the deadly hurricane which wreaked havoc on the US state of Texas at the end of August 2017. This has highlighted the importance of risk management strategies to ensure that all of us can survive severe interruption.

Alzheimer’s Month adelaide wills and estate planning

How To Address The Most Overlooked Legal Consequences Of Dementia

How To Address The Most Overlooked Legal Consequences Of Dementia adelaide wills and estate planning

According to Alzheimer’s Australia, there are nearly half a million Australians currently living with dementia, and by 2025, this number is expected to triple. How should families of vulnerable older people help them to protect themselves and their assets?

There are several different types of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, Vascular Dementia, Dementia from Parkinson’s disease and similar disorders, Dementia with Lewy bodies, Frontotemporal dementia (Pick’s disease), Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, and others.

Some of the early effects are mild. Symptoms can seem to come and go, and people can have good days and bad days.

In the legal world, there is an emphasis on something called “capacity”, which usually refers to a person’s “testamentary capacity”.

Binding Financial Agreements are an Important Part of Modern Estate Planning

Binding Financial Agreements Are an Important Part of Modern Estate Planning

Modern relationships are fraught with tension and complexities when it comes to finances. Looking ahead to the time when you and your partner are established in your careers and have accrued considerable assets, it makes sense to want to protect what is yours should the relationship end.

Marriage, de facto and domestic partnerships

Australian Census data from 2011 shows that the married proportion of the total population has been falling. It is no longer the case that a majority of the population is married. Not so long ago the married proportion was as high as two-thirds of the entire population during the mid-20th century.  In 2011, this has dropped to less than half., and the relative divorce rate in Australia remains one of the highest in the world.

What Are Testamentary Trusts?

What Are Testamentary Trusts?

You can think of a trust as a kind of legal-container, in which assets are held safely for the benefit of one or more people. A testamentary trust is setup in a Will, which appoints one or more trustees to distribute income & capital to beneficiaries over time and with certain guidelines in place.

This offers several benefits over standard Wills. Incorporating a testamentary trust into your Will is not relevant in every situation, but our specialist Adelaide estate planning law firm can help you determine if this legal measure would be of benefit to you and your loved ones.

How a Testamentary Trust Works

There are different types of testamentary trusts. A discretionary testamentary trust generally names a class of beneficiaries from which the trustee can choose to distribute, meaning that the trustee controls the assets and maintains legal protections for them until they are distributed to the end-beneficiary. Sometimes the trustee only distributes income from invested assets to one class of beneficiaries, keeping the capital distribution for a separate class of beneficiaries. In this way, the income-benefit of an asset can be given to a person, without them (or their “predators and creditors” being able to get their hands on the underlying asset.

Estate Planning Challenges: The Ageing of Australia’s Population

Estate Planning Challenges The Ageing of Australias Population

Thanks to modern health care, the ageing population of Australia is growing rapidly. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the demographic of people aged 65 and older increased by 3.7 percent between 1993 and 2013.

These numbers are expected to increase more rapidly over the next decade. If you’re in fairly good health and able to care for yourself well into your golden years, this is great news.

However, no one knows when an illness or injury could strike, requiring expensive long-term care and accommodations. Not planning for the future while you’re still of sound mind and in good health could be disastrous for you and your loved ones—physically, emotionally and financially. This is why it is in your best interest to meet with an Adelaide estate planning lawyer at Genders & Partners as soon as possible.

Legal Documents

When you meet with our experts on estate planning in Adelaide, we will assist you to protect yourself, your family and your assets. In addition to preparing your Will, we will provide advice and assistance on Powers of Attorney, and Advance Care Directives so that your loved ones know who is in charge of making certain decisions for you should you become ill or unable to make decisions for yourself. This leaves no one guessing or arguing over your wishes.

Undue Influence and the Growing Problem of Elder Abuse

Undue Influence and the Growing Problem of Elder Abuse

Elder abuse can take many forms, including neglect, verbal and physical abuse, and financial abuse. According to the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, people who are aged 80 and older suffer two to three times the abuse rate of those in younger age brackets.

As modern health care continues to increase life expectancy, more elderly people than ever will need to depend upon other people who may or may not have their best interests at heart. In such cases, undue influence is a real threat that can be prevented or minimised with the help of our estate planning lawyers in Adelaide.