No one wants to consider their own mortality. Most people with children or a substantial estate will work with an attorney to establish a will outlining their wishes relating to assets and finances.
But often, it’s neglected until later in life, and sometimes people wait too long, never getting the opportunity with the decision on how to divide the estate left in the hands of the court system.
Ideally, the moment you start accumulating assets and developing investments or savings, you should consider how you want your affairs handled at your passing.
You will need to incorporate estate planning lawyers in Brisbane to help with the logistics and legalities since estate planning involves much more than merely developing a will.
An attorney will ensure that each step in the process is done according to Australian law and is binding. Let’s look at the protocol a Brisbane estate lawyer will follow to keep your affairs in line.
What Protocol Do The Best Estate Lawyers In Brisbane Follow To Secure Affairs
The ASIC, or Australian Securities and Investments Commission, estimates that roughly half of all Australians are void of having a legal will. The half with a valid will neglect to recognize a need for a comprehensive estate plan.
The documentation that many Brisbane estate lawyers might include with planning includes:
- The will
- Advance healthcare directives
- Power of attorney
- Power of guardianship (if appropriate)
- Life insurance
- Will trusts or testamentary trusts
- Binding/non-binding superannuation death benefit nominations
In order to establish a proper estate plan, you must be at least 18 years of age and deemed mentally competent.
While it’s usually in the back of people’s minds that “someday” they will need to make their will, few understand the other elements that go into estate planning.
Go to https://www.moneyhelper.org.uk/en/family-and-care/death-and-bereavement/when-to-use-a-probate-specialist/ for guidance on when to use a lawyer for probate and then follow these documents to better understand their place in your estate planning.
The advance care directive
An estate lawyer will recommend this consideration when planning for your future. This is also referenced as a living will. The record stipulates essentially your values and beliefs as it pertains to your care if you were rendered incapable of expressing these.
A person is appointed to then make decisions according to your wishes when you can no longer do so.
Often, a medical provider will provide patients with these directives and guidance on completing the paperwork.
The power of attorney
Many estate documents, like the will, are not effective until the date of passing. Many ponder what happens when you’re alive and perhaps suddenly unable to make crucial decisions. It becomes necessary in your estate planning protocol to have a (POA) power of attorney designated to step in.
Appointing a POA requires careful forethought since, essentially, the individual would need to be responsible for “stepping into your shoes” with the capacity to make the same decisions you would make.
It’s wise to speak with a Brisbane estate attorney to learn the circumstance under which you should consider designating a power of attorney.
The life insurance
People often forget to consider life insurance in their estate planning. Still, it is a vital component given the fact that, upon passing, insurance proceeds need handling straight away. The policy will outline specifically how these will be delegated to beneficiaries.
Careful forethought needs to be placed on how you want the proceeds divided.
While most spouses merely pass it from one to the other, a little more consideration should be placed on delegation, especially if you have children or other individuals who are exceptionally important in your life and with the mindset that your spouse could potentially pass also.
This is another area where speaking with an estate planning attorney would be advantageous to gain insight on how to set up your beneficiaries to your greatest satisfaction.
A testamentary trust
These can be established with the will and can be advantageous since they offer a level of control over who is responsible for managing inherited funds.
When a beneficiary is underage, perhaps irresponsible with money, or disabled, monitoring is necessary.
These also protect against the threat of legal action brought to a beneficiary, whether through bankruptcy or divorce.
Superannuation and death benefit nominations
Per superannuation law, a “super fund” designates who will receive the “super cash,” and the money can only go to eligible beneficiaries. A DBN or death benefit nomination is crucial to have outlined alongside the “super fund” because the DBN assures the money goes to the correct individual.
According to the Australian government, there are vast DBNs, each unique.
Not all of the types are offered by super funds. In order to work through the intricacies involved with superannuation money, the suggestion is to consult with a financial adviser. The counselor will also be able to discuss your DBN.
When considering estate planning, speaking with a financial adviser to assess your assets and finances is an excellent place to start; a trusted counselor can then offer you a referral to a reputed estate planning lawyer in Brisbane. Go here for guidance on choosing an estate lawyer.
Consulting with one of the best estate lawyers can help you identify the correct protocol for planning your estate and will ensure the goals you determine for your assets and finances will ultimately be achieved logistically and legally.