Regardless of how much your assets are worth or how much money you have in the bank, it is important that you have a Will to make sure that matters are dealt with in the manner that you want and to avoid any unnecessary confusion or dispute between your family members. Our wills and estate lawyers will ensure that your estate is administered in the way that you intend and you can change your Will as many times and as often as you like.
Power of Attorney
A power of attorney is a legal agreement which gives a member of your family, or another person who you trust the power to make decisions on your behalf under certain circumstances. Enduring powers of attorney operate when you are unable to manage your own affairs. While it may not be an immediate problem you are facing, most of our clients choose to enter into this agreement in order to ensure that there is someone to look out for your interests rather than to leave it in the hands of strangers.
There are different types of powers of attorney including:
1. General power of attorney: for most everyday life decisions;
2. Enduring power of attorney (Medical): for decisions about medical treatment;
3. Enduring power of attorney (Financial): for decisions about your finances together with other legal decisions; and
4. Enduring power of guardianship: for lifestyle decisions.
Applying for Probate
Even if you have been appointed an Executor of a will, you are not entitled to deal with the property of the deceased estate until you have applied and been issued with a Grant of Probate. So if you are looking to be granted the power to deal with an estate, our wills and estate lawyers can help you get organised and assist you with your probate application.
Contesting a Will
It is extremely difficult to lose a loved one and it only makes it worse when there is a dispute over the distribution of their estate, whether there is a Will or not. If you feel that you have not received what you think you are entitled to from an estate or if an agreement cannot be reached between the beneficiaries or the executors, then we are here to help you achieve a settlement quickly and efficiently.
If the proceeds of your estate are not going to be distributed immediately, for instance when you wish to delay a distribution under a Will to minor children until they attain a certain age, our wills and estate lawyers can help you draft a testamentary trust. A testamentary trust is a document that is governed by your Will and arises upon the death of the testator (the will-maker). It specifies how the trustee should control the trust, usually for a set period of time, and mandates how the trustee should continue to maintain the value of the estate until all entitlements are distributed. Speak to the team at Auslegal to see if a testamentary trust is appropriate for your needs.