A Guide On Will Preparation

Will preparation becomes essential when you need to bequeath your wealth to your family and friends. Contrary to popular belief, will preparation is not easy or a one-day affair. In reality, it is a delicate process that involves numerous deliberations. They include the following. 

Deciding What To Include In The Will

You will need to consolidate your assets before writing your will. Typically, you should conduct a thorough assessment to determine what to include in the will. For example, it is usual for testators to set aside some funds for their funeral. In this case, you should create a joint bank account with a close family member. They will automatically gain control of the account after you. You could also opt to sell depreciating assets since they could be of little value to the beneficiaries. 

Deciding Who To Include In The Will

In Australia, testators are allowed to bequeath their estate to whomever they wish. However, it would be wise to include all your direct dependents. If you leave out a dependent, they could contest the will on a family provision claim. You could also want to donate some of your wealth to a charitable organisation. 

Choosing Executors

The executor is the individual who distributes your estate to the beneficiaries. He or she does not have to be a beneficiary. Once you die, the executor will file for probate. The court will assess the will to determine its legality. If it meets the minimum requirements, the executor will receive a grant of probate. This is a legal document that gives the executor control over your estate. He or she will pay any debts that you owed, clear estate taxes and divide the estate. The executor is a critical component of the estate planning process. Therefore, he or she should be someone who you can trust. 

Writing Letters Of Wishes 

The letter of wishes contains specific details on how you want your estate managed and shared. It may contain the following: 

  • If you left out a beneficiary from your will, you could include an explanation of your actions. This explanation could prevent the beneficiary from contesting the will.
  • How you want beneficiaries to use their inheritance. For example, funds in account X could be used to renovate property Y.
  • Any final wishes regarding your funeral. For example, you could say that you want your body cremated. 

You should not have to undertake the tedious task of will preparation. An experienced wills and estates lawyer will help out with every aspect of will preparation. Additionally, the lawyer will ensure that the document meets the legal standards required during probate. Contact a lawyer who offers will preparation services to learn more.