We understand that Estate Planning can be quite daunting and confronting. At Smythe Wozniak Lawyers, our goal is to make this transaction as simple and hassle-free as we can. Estate planning documents are legal documents which are required to be prepared while you still have the capacity to manage your own affairs.
What is a Will?
A Will is a legal document in which you can stipulate your wishes as to who is to receive your property, money and other assets after you die. Preparing a will is the best way to ensure that your wishes are followed and ensure that you leave a legacy to your family. You will need to consider who you wish to nominate as your Executor/s and your beneficiaries. The Executor if the person who should ensure that your will is administrated in accordance with your wishes. The Beneficiaries are the people who will inherit what you leave to them in your will. You must ensure that you provide adequately for your spouse/partner and your children or any dependants to avoid any Family Provisions claims being made on your estate. If you do not make a Will, your family will have greater expense and difficulty in sorting through your Estate and could result in the courts deciding who is entitled to receive your assets. You can change your Will at any time you wish. You should change your Will if you get married, get divorced or have children as these events can result in any previous Wills being contested and/or set aside. Please contact our office to make an appointment to discuss any questions you may have. Our friendly and qualified staff will be available to ensure that you have a validly drafted Will which expresses your wishes.
What is a Power of Attorney?
A Power of Attorney is a legal document by which you nominate a person that you trust to manage your legal and financial affairs, should you require them to do so. It is important to understand that your Attorney acts as if they were you and their actions are binding on you. Therefore you should only appoint someone that you trust. You can prepare a Power of Attorney for a limited period of time or one that is Enduring which will operate in the future should you lose the capacity to make your own decisions. Our friendly and qualified staff will be available to explain the responsibilities that you and your Attorneys must accept and will provide the necessary certificates as required.
What is an Enduring Guardian?
An Enduring Guardianship is a legal document which you use to nominate a person that you trust to make decisions in relation to your health and welfare, should you be unable to do so. You can choose which functions you authorise your guardian to make for you, such as decide what medical treatment you should have or where you live. Our friendly and qualified staff will be available to explain the role and responsibilities of your Guardian and explain what kind of decisions you can allow them to make for you. Your guardian must always act in your best interests and in accordance with the law.