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Planning a holiday, going sky diving, driving a car or crossing the road?  Here are some OMG reasons you need a will.

  1. OMG I don’t get to choose who distributes my assets!

Nope!  Your property and who gets it will be divided according to the Rules of Intestacy as set out in the Administration Act.  This means that the law will decide who will manage the distribution of your estate, you will not have any say in it.

 

  1. OMG my life’s work gets divided according to rules not merit!

Under the Rules of Intestacy your property gets divided up clinically according to your blood line.  It means your spouse and your children will only get a portion of your estate according to a formula in the rules.  Siblings, friends and extended relatives can all be left with nothing. You cannot choose who gets which of your assets.

 

  1. OMG it’s going to be expensive!

Unless you have some experience dealing with estate matters and legislation it can be quite a complicated and confusing process for your loved ones to go through.  Not only are they struggling with your passing, they now have to worry about how they are going to divide your estate.  This can include going to Court, consulting a lawyer and maintain the property in the meantime, all of which costs money.

 

  1. OMG it’s going to take a long time!

While the process can be straight forward (often with legal assistance) it can be slow going as more documentation is needed for the Courts and consent amongst the beneficiaries is required as to whom is going to administer the estate.  This can be particularly difficult if people depended on you for financial support, as this will cease as soon as you pass away (your bank accounts will be frozen!).  Avoid delay and get your Will and affairs in order.

 

  1. OMG people can make claims against my estate!

If you don’t set out who should and should not receive your estate then relatives and other related parties may argue about their entitlements.  This can result in people getting some of your assets that you would have never dreamed of them receiving.  If you have a will your intentions are clear as to who you wanted to receive your estate.

 

About the authors:
This article has been co-authored by Haley Graydon and Steven Brown at Lynn & Brown Lawyers.  Haley is a UWA law graduate and currently completing her College of Law.  Haley has a keen interest in  family law and estates.  Steven is a director, and has over 20 years’ experience in legal practice and practices in commercial law, dispute resolution and estate planning.

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