Estate Planning

shutterstock_122446069Why do you need a Will?

Bob and Beth own their home as tenants in common in equal shares. Bob and Beth have two children aged 18 and 15. Bob passes away and does not leave a Will. Pursuant to the laws of intestacy (dying without a Will) in Victoria, Beth will have to share Bob’s interest in their home with her two children. Beth’s oldest child realises their interest in the home and wants to cash out such benefit. Beth is now left with the scenario that she has to raise funds to remove her oldest child’s interest in her home.

If Bob left a Will specifying that all his interest in his home is to pass to Beth then Beth will inherit Bob’s share of the house without interference from any of Bob and Beth’s children.

Why do you need a Financial Power of Attorney/Enduring Guardianship?

Following on from the example above, Bob owns some shares in his personal name. Bob is struck down with an illness that sees him end up in a coma and then wakes up and no longer has legal capacity. Beth needs to raise funds to enter Bob into a High Care Facility. The High Care Facility requires a Guardian to place Bob into their care. Bob’s shares will cover the Accommodation Bond. Beth has to apply to VCAT to be appointed Bob’s administrator to obtain the authority to sell Bob’s shares and his guardian to place Bob into the High Care Facility.

If Bob had appointed Beth as his Financial Power of Attorney, then Beth could have presented such attorney to dispose of Bob’s shares legally. In addition, if Bob had appointed Beth as his Guardian, she could have placed Bob into the High Care Facility on presentation of the Enduring Guardianship document.