With so many challenges to deal with, it is understandable that worrying about what happens to our assets after we die is not one of our primary concerns. However, the avoidance of this topic can cause serious problems for your loved ones upon your passing. When you draft a Will, you are ensuring that those you love are looked after according to your wishes and that your assets are distributed in an efficient manner.
A Will has many benefits. These include the following:
Efficient Allocation of Your Assets
Should you not have a Will, you will have no control over how your wealth is allocated after your death. This may result in individuals whom you intended to benefit from your estate in fact inheriting nothing at all. A Will allows you to specify in detail who will receive which of your assets, so that those who you love most receive the wealth you leave behind.
Caring for Those You Love
Your Will can provide instructions for how members of your family should be cared for. You can specify how your wealth is to be used in providing for housing, education and basic needs. You may also specify who should be appointed as the guardian of your children should the need arise. This ensures that vulnerable members of your family are taken care of after your passing.
Appointing an Executor of Your Choice
A Will allows you to appoint an individual of your choice to act as the executor of your estate. You can ensure that this is a person that you trust, such as your spouse or child, or your attorney or financial planner. This individual will be responsible for the distribution of your assets and giving effect to your final wishes.
Avoid Conflict and Alleviate Family Worries
The passing of a loved one is hard enough. By leaving a Will, you alleviate your family from quarrels over who is entitled to your assets by providing certainty as to your intentions.
Giving to Causes You Care About
A Will allows you to make a charity or organisation a beneficiary of your assets. This can allow you to promote an organisation’s goals and make a tangible difference in other’s lives after you have passed. Designating a charity as a beneficiary in your Will can be a powerful final statement of your deeply held values and leave a lasting positive impact on your community.
by Jenna Rodd and Tamasen Maasdorp (Family Law, Deceased Estates & Wills Attorneys at Reynolds Attorneys)