Wills & Estates
At Traralgon Wills and Estates Lawyers Henry Street Law, we can advise you on the best way to prepare your Will so that it suits your individual circumstances. There is no single answer about how to draft your Will. It depends on your assets, individual circumstances and who your beneficiaries will be.
You should make a will that complies with the provisions of the Wills Act 1997 (Vic), makes your wishes clear, and that avoids confusion and conflict between your loved ones. Making your will in this way helps protect your family and friends from costly and stressful legal disputes.
At Henry Street Law, we have 30 years experience in this area.
Things you need to consider
Who will be your Executors?
Your Executors have the legal and administrative task of making Application for a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration from the Supreme Court of Victoria and then when that has been obtained, sorting out your assets and debts after you pass away, and of making sure that your wishes as outlined in the Will are carried out.
Who will be your beneficiaries and what effect will their inheritance have on their circumstances?
You can designate anyone as a beneficiary and distribute your assets in any way you like, however if you don’t make a Will, your estate will be distributed in accordance with the intestacy provisions of the Administration and Probate Act 1958 (Vic).
You also should consider the effects that an inheritance may have on your beneficiaries. In some cases a testamentary trust Will can sidestep potential taxation problems, so it’s important that you ask our specific advice about your situation.
How do you know a Will is valid?
To be valid, the person making the Will must be mentally competent, the Will must be correctly signed and witnessed, and show no evidence of having been tampered with. The witnesses to the Will should not be beneficiaries, or related to beneficiaries and must be over 18.
If there is any doubt, or potential for dispute as to your mental competence, you should get a doctor’s confirmation of your capacity to make the will and include it with your Will.
How often should I review my Will?
You should review your Will and seek advice on it after any major events, such as marriage, divorce, a property purchase or sale, death of an executor or beneficiary, or if your assets change significantly. We also recommend that you review your Will every few years just to make sure that it is still the best instrument for you and for your family.
Henry Street Law can help you
We know the potential pitfalls, and will ask you the right questions to make sure that you have considered every possibility. We can advise you as to whether you would be best with a simple Will or a Testamentary Trust Will. We can draft your Will in a way that may help protect your family from expensive estate litigation after your death, and we can store your Will securely.