A will allows you to allocate your estate and sentimental items to friends and family once you die. Contrary to popular belief, wills are not for the old. Death comes when least expected. As such, you should write your will at the earliest opportunity and make regular updates as your financial condition changes. Read this excerpt for some expert tips to help you as you write your will.

Tip 1: Work With A Wills And Estates Lawyer

There are several benefits of hiring a wills and estates lawyer to help you draft your will:

  • Experienced lawyers are conversant with the law. For instance, wills in Australia must be signed by two witnesses.
  • The lawyer will check the wording of your will to ensure you do not make any errors or contradictions.
  • The lawyer will attach a codicil to your will if you need to make amendments.
  • Once you die, the lawyer will work with the executor during probate. 

Tip 2: Choosing An Executor

The executor will settle your debts and manage your property before transferring it to your beneficiaries. They will apply for a letter of probate (a document proving that your will is valid) from the Supreme Court. Preferably, the will should have two executors. The secondary executor takes charge if the primary is not available.

Tip 3: Property Division

Dividing your property can be a nerve-wracking task. Below are some tips to help you divide your property.

  • Know your assets. Remember, you can only bequeath assets that are registered in your name. If you co-own a business, you can only bequeath your share of the company.
  • Some people will opt to transfer all their assets to their spouses. The spouse will share property among the kids.
  • If you would want to donate a portion of your estate to charitable organisations, you must be specific about what you intend to donate.
  • Trusts will ensure the continuity of your various businesses. Typically, you will have a trustee managing the trust (assets or cash at the bank). The trustee will divide proceeds among the beneficiaries.

Tip 4: Power Of Attorney

It is a document that enables an agent to make medical or financial decisions if you are mentally incapacitated or critically ill. The agent will make critical decisions such as whether you should go for surgery or whether you should be put in life support. Besides, they will manage your estate before you recover or die.

When writing a will, hire a wills and estates lawyer, choose an executor and include a power of attorney. Besides, observe the recommended property division tips. 

For more information, contact a wills and estates service today.