Avoid Disputes – Legal Wills, Enduring Powers of Attorney, Appointment of Enduring Guardians and Living Wills

Estate planning is critically important in an aging society.

Dementia Australia estimates that currently, 487,500 Australians are living with dementia and that without a major medical breakthrough, this figure is projected to increase to 1,076,000 people by 2058. These numbers make sobering reading. Another concerning statistic is that only 55% of Australians have a will, with an even smaller proportion of Australians having recorded their wishes regarding the management of their financial, health, and lifestyle affairs, if they lack the capacity to manage them themselves.

It is important to get your affairs in order before it is too late by completing the following legally binding document:

A Will, which takes effect only on your death, empowers you to:

• Choose appropriate executors to manage your wealth on your death;
• Make gifts to friends and charities;
• Distribute your assets as you choose;
• Establish trusts appropriate for asset protection and tax purposes.

If you do not have a Will, you will die intestate and your assets will be distributed in accordance with the Government Intestacy Rules. Each state and territory in Australia has different rules.

The Dementia Australia Statistic echoes the USA 2020 Census which shows for the first time in history, people over 64 outnumber children under 5 across the globe. This marks a historic demographic change.

An aging population means people can expect longer periods of poor health and declining mental capacity. Because of this, it is crucial to appoint substitute decision-makers by completing:

• An Enduring Power of Attorney covering your financial and property affairs;
• A Guardianship Nomination covering lifestyle and health issues;
• A Living Will dealing with end-of-life decisions permits you to express your wishes about medical treatment if you do not have capacity and cannot speak for yourself.

In each case, the document should appoint a trusted family member, friend or professional person chosen by you to make decisions for you if you cannot do so yourself.

If you do not complete these documents, NCAT [the Guardianship Tribunal] will step in to decide who will look after you.

RN LEGAL has assisted many clients with the delicate task of creating and updating Wills, Power of Attorney, and on many occasions has acted for clients when a Will they are a beneficiary to has been contested. RN LEGAL has the experience, expertise and resources to help you write and safeguard your Will.

Don’t leave the distribution of your estate and your family’s future to chance. Contact us on [02] 91 91 92 93 or mail@rnlegal.org if you require advice in relation to your will or estate matter.