On Thursday 13 November, Flo Mitchell and Paul Ehterington hosted a seminar on Wills and Estates .
Held at the Coast Centre, Little Bay, a number of little known issues concerning the administration of Wills and Estates were analysed and discussed.
The speakers urged the need for everyone to have a valid and enforceable Will to ensure their wishes after death are carried out.
Some of the many topics analysed and discussed were:
the appointment of an Executor to manage your affairs, including the potential for ensuring the welfare of young children
the effectiveness of a Will
the ability to donate to charities
the need to accommodate various alternative scenarios within a Will, including the possibility of an accidents where more than one person dies
challenging a Will and minimising the riak of a challenge to your Will
Powers of Attorney
Deeds of Enduring Guardianship
Although the seminar was certainly not covering a cheery subject, those present listened attentively, asked many more questions than expected, and enthusiastically engaged in the various discussions emanating from the questions.
After the effectiveness of a Will was discussed in some detail, the possibility of challenging a Will was also raised in discussion. There are various ways to minimise the risk of a challenge to your Will. However, it was accepted there is a distinct possibility for those who have been left out of a Will, or beneficiaries who feel they've not been provided for adequately to challenge the Will and resort to litigation to achieve the result they desire. As the costs of such an application are often ordered to be taken out of the Estate, the overall result is a deplation of the Estate's assets.
The seminar was a hige success, and was intended to run for an hour. However, bacause of the many questions and animated discussions emanating from those questions the session actually ran for around an hour and a half. Light refreshments were provided, and even after the seminar ended, a number of attendees stayed back to ask the presenters more questions. Attendees left the meeting with a better understanding of how these complex matters are dealt with as well as information on the importance of Powers of Attorney and Deeds of Enduring Guardianship. Some superannuation matters were also discussed in a free-flowing exchange.