Melbourne Will and Probate Lawyers
The transfer of your assets according to your wishes on death takes careful evaluation and insight.
Kelly and Chapman can guide you through the process of will preparation, including mutual will and some of the more complex will structures including testamentary trusts or special purpose trusts. We will be documenting your wishes to ensure that your estate is transferred to your beneficiaries as you intended. In doing this will aim to simplify complex issues and take into consideration tax-effective passing of assets and minimising risk associated with future disputed estates.
Powers of Attorney
We will advise you on the appointment of Enduring Powers of Attorney (financial and medical) and Enduring Powers of Guardianship in an effort to ensure your wishes are carried out should you become incapacitated and unable to manage your own affairs.
With an ageing population holding considerable wealth many issues arise on the transfer of that wealth to younger generations. These circumstances are complicated by the frequency of second marriages between people having children from a previous marriage, assets held in trusts or by private companies, the ever increasing wealth in superannuation funds, and complex taxation and other laws governing these issues.
We can provide expert analysis and advice in relation to the passing of assets, or control of those assets, from one generation to the next. We can prepare wills to meet the most complex of circumstances. However as wills are not the sole determinate of estate planning in many instances, they also focus on planning regarding trusts, superannuation and private companies.
Grant of Probate
A grant of probate of a will is a procedure that takes place before a person’s final wishes can be carried out. This is a document that is issued by the Probate Office of the Supreme Court which states that the executor has proven the will is valid.
Once a grant has been received, the executor is then free to deal with the assets and distribute to the beneficiaries of the will. However, this can sometimes be a complex and challenging task, especially where large amounts of money and assets are involved.
Kelly and Chapman will guide you through the process of applying for probate and ensuring the distribution of assets is handled in the least stressful way.
The failure to plan ahead in the will preparation process can lead to people being unfairly removed from the planning and will preparation process. Estate disputes are sometimes unavoidable.
We assist you in making and defending estate claims and can assist in administering claims involving superannuation funds through the superannuation complaints tribunal.
We provide comprehensive and practical advice on challenging or defending wills and finding solutions. We offer a personal, tailored approach, appreciating that estate claims are often emotional and highly sensitive.
Wills and Estates
In recent Supreme Court of New South Wales decision of Burke v Burke – a family provision application involving a needy son and a lengthy estrangement that was dismissed with costs.
The estate had a net value of approximately $1.25 million. The deceased mother aged 93 left behind a son aged 69, another son aged 66, and a daughter aged 61. No provision was made in the Will for the 69 year old son, who had no superannuation, did not own his own home, and was bankrupt. There was a lengthy estrangement between the plaintiff and the deceased. It was found that the deceased person was entitled to regard the plaintiff as a person undeserving of any benefit from her estate whatever his financial circumstances and the Court dismissed the application with costs.
The decision was appealed. The appeal was recently dismissed with costs.