Will Awareness Week - a timely reminder

Posted on 13 September 2011

The first ever Law Society Will Awareness Day was held on 19 August this year. The day aimed to “promote and encourage will making”. Whether young or old, recently married or divorced, the importance of making a will is the same for everyone. Law Society president Stuart Westgarth highlighted this importance, saying “In March last year, significant changes to the law came into effect that apply to the distribution of estates of people who die without a valid will, making it even more imperative to give careful consideration to the drafting of a will.”

Keeping this in mind, here is a quick reminder why, now you have been alerted to the issues, you should prioritise either making or updating your will.

A Will is a legal document that informs your Executor (the person who organises for your estate to be administered) and your family of your wishes upon your death. These wishes can include the distribution of assets, the guardianship of any children and details as to why you may have specifically left somebody out of your will.

Why is it important for me to have a Will?

It is important to have a Will to:

  • ensure that your wishes are clear;
  • decide what you want to happen with your hard earned money;
  • keep heirlooms in the family;
  • make sure that your children are looked after;
  • put in place appropriate financial and tax planning measures;
  • look after your family and loved ones;
  • avoid family squabbles and disputes;
  • avoid the time, stress and money caused by disputes;
  • reduce the heartache for your family; and
  • give you and your loved ones peace of mind.

What happens if I Don’t Have a Will?

When a person dies without a will, the distribution of their estate is left to the system set out by the law. A clear, concise and well-drafted will can reduce disputes and help ensure an estate is distributed in accordance with your wishes.

Don’t put off getting a will any longer. Nobody knows what is ahead of them. Contact us to start the process and rest easy knowing, should anything happen to you, the assets you worked so hard for will be distributed as you have wished and your minor children cared for by the people you choose.