7 signs that your family will fight over your estate after youre gone

7 Signs That Your Family Will Fight Over Your Estate After You’re Gone

7 signs that your family will fight over your estate after youre gone

After 34 years in legal practice, there isn’t much that still surprises Rod Genders.

He’s pretty much seen it all.

His law firm is the oldest in South Australia – established in 1848 – and like his father and his grandfather before him, Genders has spent his entire working life in the law, helping generations of Australian families to sort out a multitude of legal issues.

His areas of expertise are Wills and estates, and he describes witnessing a massive increase in litigation in these areas.

did you know youre a yoyo

Wills and Estate Planning Adelaide: Did You Know You’re A YOYO?

did you know youre a yoyo

YOYO stands for You’re On Your Own, and it has never been truer for Australian retirees.

In the 1980’s when Bob Hawke and Paul Keating changed government policy to encourage us all to save enough money for our eventual retirement, we did so with an expectation of mastering our own destiny to enjoy a wonderful and carefree retirement.

The idea was to reduce the dependence upon government funds for the old-age pension.

There has been a tremendous change in the social culture of Australia in the 40 years or so since superannuation commenced.

Genders and Partners

Wills and Estate Planning Adelaide: One More Hour … Baby Boomers, Pop Songs and Estate Planning

Genders and Partners I remember when I was young, the world had just begun, and I was happyi.

When I was younger, so much younger than todayii.

One more hour and my life will be throughiii.

Can you name the classic pop songs in which these timeless lyrics were sung? If so, then you’re probably at least as old as me, and you are a “Baby Boomer” (born between 1945 and 1965).

So what does this have to do with Estate Planning? Well quite a few things, really.

If we’re old enough to remember when these songs first made an impact on popular culture, then we’re at an age when we need to confront some harsh realities about our continued existence.

The 7 Deadly Sins of DIY Wills

The 7 Deadly Sins of DIY Wills

The 7 Deadly Sins of DIY Wills

Trying to DIY the most important legal document in your life is a bad idea. This is a specialised area of law, and when you don’t know what you’re doing, it is very easy to make critical errors trying to do this yourself. Any mistakes you make won’t become apparent until you die, and it’s too late for you to fix them, so it will be your family who has the stress and cost of dealing with it all.

Here are 7 of the most common errors people make with DIY Wills:

  1. No Advice. While DIY Will-kits and online services might provide you with a document that looks like a Will, appearances can be deceptive.       What you are paying a lawyer for is the advice they provide you along with the Will. It is illegal for anyone other than a licensed lawyer to provide legal advice for a fee, whether that means answering questions or making planning suggestions for how to accomplish goals. So the companies that offer DIY Wills or kits or online documents are always careful to tell you that they are not giving you legal advice, and they ALWAYS recommend that you consult a lawyer if you have questions.

Deceased Estates Simplified Cover

Challenges to a Will or Estate in South Australia

A Guide for Beneficiaries of a Deceased Estate in South Australia | Genders and Partners

Challenges to Wills are far less common than challenges to estates. A Will can be contested or challenged when it is alleged that the Will was:

  • executed under undue influence from others
  • executed when the testator lacked capacity to understand what he/she was doing
  • tampered-with or altered after it was signed
  • the meaning of the Will is unclear
  • a later Will has been made by the Deceased
  • incorrectly executed or otherwise invalid due to a failure to follow the correct formalities
  • since been revoked
  • procured via fraud

the best new years resolution to help your family

The Best New Year’s Resolution to Help Your Family

the best new years resolution to help your family

Another year has passed and 2018 is already here. The New Year is a time of optimism and noble resolutions to quit bad habits, get organised, pay off debt and save money. It’s a good time to take a look at your estate plan to make sure it is in place and up to date.

Your estate planning documents determine who will receive your property when you die, and also determine who has the right to make financial and major medical decisions during your lifetime. Getting your estate plan right will save money and heartbreak for you and your family.

Less than half of adult Australians have any estate planning documents in place and many of those people may have outdated documents. Documents that were created when you first got married or when your children were born may need updating years later, after your family and financial situation have changed entirely.

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

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).

End-of-Life-Planning-Adelaide-Wills-and-Testamentary-Trusts-lawyer.jpg

End-of-Life Planning

End-of-Life Planning

Deciding how you want to live out your last days is a touchy subject for most people, but if you don’t take the time to do so now, you and your loved ones could end up suffering needlessly. While you are still of sound mind, you need to determine whom you trust to make decisions about your lifestyle and medical care if you are ever incapacitated.

An expert Adelaide estate planning lawyer can document your end-of-life wishes with an Advance Care Directive to help you attain peace of mind about your future and get back to the business of living in the moment.

Estate Planning Complications of a Lost Will

Estate Planning Complications of a Lost Will

Estate Planning Complications of a Lost Will

Failing to keep your estate planning documents safe can cause major complications, for you and your family.

In South Australia, the simple form of Probate, known as a Grant of Probate in Common Form requires production and surrender of the Last Will and Testament of the deceased. This means that the original signed document must be located as a matter of priority. Otherwise the executor may not be able to deal with the assets of the deceased.

If the original Will cannot be located, the situation may not be hopeless. A different form of Probate, called a Grant of Probate in Solemn Form, may be attempted with a draft or copy of the last known Will of the deceased.