Former Spouses & Family Feuds: What happens when you die without a Will.

These days everyone seems to be affected by family breakdown in some way or another. With families becoming increasingly complex everyone should have a Will – even the young and invincible!

Have you ever considered in whose hands your hard-earned wealth will end up if you die without a Will? In New South Wales the Succession Act 2006 (NSW) sets out rates of intestacy which determines how your wealth will be divided in the event that you die without a Will.

Former Spouses & Estranged Parents

Do you have a spouse? Seems fair that they will benefit from your Estate. But what if you are separated from your spouse? If you are separated but not divorced your spouse still stands to inherit your wealth if you don’t have a Will that says otherwise. Regardless of how substantial your wealth is, very few individuals want to see their wealth benefit their ex-spouse.

If you have no spouse and no children, then your wealth will pass to your parents. Again, in most circumstances this seems appropriate, but with the rise of family breakdowns, what if you don’t speak with one of your parents? The Succession Act does not distinguish between parents based on their relationship with you.

Challenging the position under the Succession Act can be expensive and diminish the value of the Estate. Even though the Court may, on application of a loved one, make an order for provision from your Estate effectively altering the rules of intestacy, there is no guarantee that the Court will not still determine that an ex-spouse, or another person who you do not intend to end up with your Estate, has an entitlement or that your loved ones will get what you consider appropriate.

The Solution?

By making a legally binding Will you get to choose both who benefits from your Estate and who will be responsible for administering your Estate.

A Will is the best way to ensure a person of your choosing ends up with your property, savings and possessions, and administers your Estate, ensuring your wishes are granted.

We know you are busy – everyone is these days, but it is no excuse. So stop putting off what you know should already be in place.  We can get all your Estate Planning needs in motion in just one phone call.

Call us today on 4952 3901  to speak to one of your experienced Estate Planning Lawyers and find out more about our Fixed Fee Estate Planning Packages and Advanced Estate Planning Solutions.

By Rebecca Wosman

Associate Solicitor