If you are a person who has achieved a stage of financial independence, it is vital that you have an effective Estate Plan to protect you and your family. An Estate Plan is not limited to having a Will. It generally involves more complex decisions around the control of your personal, family and business affairs in the event of death or incapacitation.
If a plan is poorly constructed and communicated, it can lead to damaging disputes. You may have heard about the Rinehart family feud? Or the family who never reconciled when the granddaughter took her grandmother’s antique engagement ring? How about the estate that got whittled away to nothing by legal fees? And the neighbour who passed away without a Will and suddenly a mistress emerged in the aftermath? We’ve all heard the horror stories – and many of us, sadly, have been involved in them.
Poor planning, lack of open communication, high emotions and high stakes when handling an estate are a combustible mix and can lead to family relationships breaking down. None of us want this in theory – but it happens tragically often.
This article focuses on ways to help ensure you avoid such problems by putting in place an effective Estate Plan – by which we mean one that is complete, valid, and well-communicated. Read more