Preparing your will is not always an easy process. Apart from your emotions being involved, you will have to consult with several family members and meet with a lawyer. It is not surprising that many people abandon or ignore this task.
Although most people understand the importance of a will, many do not comprehend the repercussions when you die without a will. They can assume that government laws will take care of everything. But do these laws always work in your favour or according to your desires?
This article explores what happens when a person dies intestate or leaves loved ones behind without a will prepared by TGB Lawyers Wills and Estates.
It means that you have not left any instructions on what to do with your belongings after your death.
The standard procedure involves dividing the property to your next of kin according to a formula set by the Australian government and cannot usually be changed. A lawyer will have to be retained to ensure that the process goes smoothly, – his fees coming out of your estate.
Dying intestate may also give rise to disputes over the division of your property, which may lead to the courtroom. It is especially true with families with minor children and individuals in common-law relationships. Although the government determines that under-aged children are entitled to the property of the estate, a conflict arises because the surviving common-law partner may have to apply for support for a dependent against the estate to receive a form of alimony from your estate. In such cases, intestate death will take into consideration the interests of your legitimate children against those of your common-law partner.
Settling this in court or going through litigation is often long and very expensive. It’s something no one wants to face, especially the family or families you are leaving behind who are trying to deal with the significant life changes as a result of your death.
The last thing you would like to leave after your death is a legal mess to clean up for your family. Although the government has set up standardised procedures aiming to streamline the process designed to handle estates carefully after death, it is highly unlikely that the formula they have set will meet your wishes.
If you die without living relatives, all assets become the property of the government, and there is no possibility of transferring the assets of your estate even to your favourite charity.
The safer way is to have your will prepared beforehand and updated regularly by a lawyer. It will ensure that your estate is divided between the people who matter most to you.
Safest still, is to have YOUR will prepared by TGB Lawyers Wills and Estates group. Working with them, you will find a team of caring professionals who aim to put your best interest their highest priority.