Having a valid Will and estate plan in place, and discussing the intentions of that plan with loved ones should be a necessary event for every family. With younger generations set to inherit an estimated $3.5 trillion in wealth from Baby Boomers, Australia is on the cusp of its largest intergenerational wealth transfer ever. This makes estate planning critical to maintain a smooth and seamless transfer.
Unfortunately, there’s far too many Australians either lacking a Will or not discussing their legacy with their family. Perpetual Client Insights and Analytics, a financial services company, just released the 2018 edition of the “What do you care about” study. The company surveyed 3,000 Australians, seeking information about their perspectives on inheritance and their families.
Despite such a large collective amount of wealth on the line, 76 per cent of Australians do not currently have a Will in place. Further, 53 per cent have not discussed their Will or estate plan with their children.
The importance of having a valid Will
With all this wealth ready to be transferred, and so many individuals without a Will in place, it can lead to confusion and chaos when it comes time for distribution of the estate. Further, the large percentage of people who haven’t discussed their Will or legacy with family members can lead to an uptick in contested Wills.
Not only is it important to get a valid Will in place to avoid unnecessary complications in administering the estate, but it’s just as vital for will-makers to have a candid conversation with their loved ones to explain their intentions. It’s far too common for disputes to arise after the will-maker has passed away, whether due to misunderstandings, disagreements in intent, or sometimes just due to petty bickering or jealousy.
Signing a valid Will and having a frank discussion with loved ones about the legacy can help ensure these loved ones and beneficiaries don’t have to deal with additional stress after losing someone dear to them.
Whether you’re the Executor of a Will being challenged, or you’re an eligible person and need to contest a Will, you should speak to the expert legal team at Gerard Malouf and Partners.