Nobody likes to think about having to prepare their last Will and Testament too much, but inevitably one day you will have to leave your house, business, farm, or other valuable asset, whether by selling up, retiring, or leaving for health reasons.
It is important to have a succession plan in place that makes the transition easy not only for yourself but also for your family or employees. This minimises the chance of the business or farm having to be sold up when you leave.
Estate planning goes beyond drafting a Will – it includes:
- The assessment of assets
- The assessment of likely taxation consequences
- Advice regarding the possibility of claims against the estate by third parties
- The protection of assets
- Appointment of an Attorney under an Enduring Power of Attorney instrument and a Substituted decision maker under an Advanced Care Directive instrument if you lose the capacity to look after your affairs yourself
Estate planning is an active process of re-evaluating the estate when circumstances in life change, such as:
- Newly married couples or those divorcing
- A change to the family’s asset pool
- A change in working conditions such as the buying or selling of a business
- Changes to superannuation, insurance policies or taxation levels
- The establishment of discretionary trusts
A successful plan is made involving all family members as it will take into account not only provisions for your retirement income but also the plans, aptitudes, and existing assets of younger generations.