Friday Flash Poll: testing your knowledge about wills

Font Size:

Tim* wrote to YourLifeChoices recently asking us to warn our members about the dangers of not leaving a will.

He explained that when his grandmother died, his mother and her three siblings were to be the beneficiaries of her estate. She had asked that on her death, she be transported back to her homeland to be buried with her husband and mother. Tim’s mother paid for this before the estate was finalised.

Tim wrote: “It was well known to everyone in our community of what sacrifices my mother did for her mother, but upon her death everything changed. And the common denominator was money.

“One of the siblings’ thinking was that her mother had no debts, was receiving multiple income streams and had never really bought any assets. So she should have loads of money and why is it taking so long to settle her estate.

“I had to explain the process, that we had to pay for the final costs of the funeral and the transportation of her remains overseas and when the final bill comes in for her headstone, we can finalise everything.

“As she had no will, we wanted to finalise the costs and then sit down and disburse the funds.  Being family, we thought this would have been a simple process.

“It went the other way. Solicitors were engaged by two of the siblings. Accusations were made of misappropriation of funds and in the process of responding to these claims, they secretly applied to the courts to become administrators of the estate – something we were not aware of and were not even given the option of being appointed joint administrators.

“That left us in the dark, having to defend ourselves in every matter involving the finances of my grandmother.

“In the end, the estate took three years to finalise, cost $50,000 (which came out of the estate, which in effect meant that all the beneficiaries ended up paying for someone else’s greed.

“It affected us all emotionally as well as financially. To think that your own family could have done this was beyond us. It was so bad that when my father passed away, none of the siblings that started the legal process came to his funeral, or their children.

“We have disowned them. Unfortunately, the emotional effect will go on forever.”

Tim implores everyone  – young and old – to prepare a will. And that’s the topic of our Friday Flash Poll today.

Loading…


* Not his real name.

Do you have any advice with regard to preparing a will? Have you been involved in any family dramas due to the writing of a will?

Join YourLifeChoices today
and get this free eBook!

Join
By joining YourLifeChoices you consent that you have read and agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy

RELATED LINKS

Rod Cunich answers your most-asked end-of-life questions

Estate planning lawyer Rod Cunich answers the questions that are most regularly asked.

Is it too late to seek details of late father’s will?

Children hit a brick wall when seeking details of late father's will.

Where there’s a will, there’s Rod Cunich

He's answered hundreds of your queries. Now meet the man behind the answers.

Written by Janelle Ward

68 Comments

Total Comments: 68
  1. 0
    0

    Whats the good of having a poll when there is no result publicised

  2. 0
    0

    Here we go again with the Will subject…having a will is no guarantee the deceased wishes will be carried out. Dont pin all your hopes on a will try to make other arrangements to protect those you wish to benefit from your assets…..and by the way if you find a bombproof way to do this, please let me know.

    • 0
      0

      The ex is still pondering hers – since her three kids are at loggerheads, giving one the PoA is a disaster, and giving two the PoA is a disaster, and giving three the PoA is a disaster… and no guarantee that anyone else will survive those kids…

      I told her to just leave it all to me – the kids don’t care, the grandies are too young, I’ve been the carer now for seven years and developed her prosperity via hard work and property improvement and selling up the market, surely if Achmed the taxi driver from somewhere or other can get an old lady to give over her house, I can wangle the same deal for my work…

      No way to guarantee how it will be handled.

  3. 0
    0

    Got me a will, got me funeral insurance dedicated to the wake…. got the kids advised they are not to cry or I’ll come back and haunt them… but are to honour my life etc not my passing.

    Man – what WILL you all do without my wit?

  4. 0
    0

    Reading all of the pitfalls with making a will leads me to believe that there may be no such thing as a watertight last will and testament. A solicitor once told me that if a person is mentioned in a will that they are unable to claim that they have been forgotten even if the only mention is “To …….I leave my best wishes.” Seems that this may be incorrect.

    I suppose that a will is now a matter of trust that those left will respect the wishes of the deceased. Obviously greed is the driving force ably supported by the legal profession who are certainly not doing it pro bono. A friend of my wife had a sister who was unhappy with her share and it became legal professionals at 10 paces and the courts. The estate was eaten up by legal fees and not only that, there was a balance over and above the estate value that needed to be paid leaving the warring sisters worse off that before.

    We paid for our children’s education, advised them as best as we could about careers and are now retired with a modest home and a little bit of cash for emergencies. They ask from time to time if we are OK so maybe, just maybe, there will be no challenge to the wills.

  5. 0
    0

    My will was drafted by military lawyers when I was sent to Vietnam, very simple, everything goes to my wife or, if she does not survive me by more than 28 days, equally between my children. It need updating as I had appointed a guardian for my infant children (required by the military so they would know to whom to send my children if both of us died simultaneously). I would now like to appoint my eldest child as executor and delete the guardianship provisions. I hope my will is still valid even if it is over 50 years old.

  6. 0
    0

    Waste of money to have life insurance when aged. Premiums are far too high.

    • 0
      0

      And when you are alive you can’t claim and when you are dead you don’t need to!

      If you have no debt and no dependants it is an unnecessary extortionate expense.

    • 0
      0

      It will all go in death taxes so no point in having life insurance.

    • 0
      0

      And what death taxes are those OG, scaremongering again

    • 0
      0

      Your silence id deafening OG, so I rightly presume you are scaremongering again with the usual rubbish

    • 0
      0

      SFR,

      Are you denying the news reports that Greens leader Di Natale only recently has demanded the reintroduction of death taxes and so have Bill Shorten’s big union bosses, the ACTU for example?

      Shorten is depending on Greens’ preferences and for later support to form a government and to pass legislation.

      However the left that support Labor are for death taxes too. Just another weapon of the class war against members of the public who try to do the right thing and provide for their family’s education and care after they have gone.

    • 0
      0

      LJ, wrong! The Greens proposal re the death tax is not on the family home or on the home you live in so would not affect people with one property.
      Your family will inherit your home and estate without any death taxes. I hope this is an innocent error and not one aimed at stopping people voting for the Greens or Labor if that is their choice.

    • 0
      0

      OG & LV are scaremongering for their LNP bosses, must be payday soon, pay per post. There paid per post jobs will be gone soon.

  7. 0
    0

    We’re leaving all to each other still living etc and last one to pop clogs – Dogs home gets the rest and executor is Dogs Home Executive.
    Dogs home has to keep our current dog in our home moving in someone to care for him and only after he/she passes can the home be sold if they desire the $ or can go on keeping it going up in value and rent it out etc.
    Our kids know not getting anything. Had good educations etc and we owe them no more care but do our doggie mates who love us guard us and relies on us so why leave them stranded? Makes for good visits all round and no argy bargy to come. Mind we did give each same amount towards a deposit on first home once married saying this is it guys and gals.

    • 0
      0

      Dogs before your children, I am sorry but I just do not understand that. Everything to the dogs home, I think you are joking or wanting a reaction.
      Dogs do not understand. Your children will. Your children will grieve and be hurting.
      When you die your children will all come back to the family home to be together. They will reminisce.
      They do not know how it will hit them but it will hit them. When your parents die life changes.
      I still grieve for my mother and father.
      I am sorry but I cannot get my head around this.

    • 0
      0

      And this set up is ripe for contesting! A stranger getting your money even if it is only from the sale of the house. Better to leave the dogs to your children to take care of and divide your estate evenly amongst your children. The dogs home guy has no right and if he has any decency will not accept it. If I was him I would think it terribly wrong!

    • 0
      0

      good thing that when the last one leaves the waiting room there will be nobody to be concerned when the Dogs Home bequest is challenged. It may be best to make the transfers and agreements while alive if you want to ensure your wishes are executed.

    • 0
      0

      this is the problem Paddington, people like you thinking they know better than the deceased how to distribute the money. Who cares whether you understand it or not, it’s not your decision to make so butt out. If you want to give your money to children, the red headed vertically challenged or heaven forbid the Collingwood supporters group go for it, it is your right to do so but allow others to exercise the same right to flush it down the loo if they so choose.

    • 0
      0

      ozirules, the kids will contest it. They have more rights than the dogs.
      Apart from being morally wrong, it is wide open for contesting.
      There could be grandchildren as well.
      There may be other relatives.
      Because I decide to leave my money to the fairies at the bottom of the garden does not mean that will happen.
      What a gut wrenching thing to do to your kids and grandkids and even another family member.
      Run it past a lawyer, it will fail. Like everything in life there are rules and laws not to mention common sense.

  8. 0
    0

    ALL wills can be contested. If doing a will that you may think will be contested or have specific requirements that you don’t want contested have everything done through a specialist Estate Planning Attorney
    A link to some good explanations about Estate planning & wills
    https://www.attwoodmarshall.com.au/how-to-avoid-someone-contesting-your-will/

    • 0
      0

      Wouldn’t trust Atwood Marshall. And I don’t believe you can avoid someone contesting your will. I’ve just had to defend a will, as executor, and the entire legal system stinks. It’s designed to enrich lawyers and barristers, and there is absolutely no regard for fairness, decency, family relationships, much less the wishes of the deceased. Lawyers are happy to destroy the estate and everyone connected to the affair for a fat profit.

    • 0
      0

      Wouldn’t trust Atwood Marshall. And I don’t believe you can avoid someone contesting your will. I’ve just had to defend a will, as executor, and the entire legal system stinks. It’s designed to enrich lawyers and barristers, and there is absolutely no regard for fairness, decency, family relationships, much less the wishes of the deceased. Lawyers are happy to destroy the estate and everyone connected to the affair for a fat profit.

    • 0
      0

      the link was only for reference & some education as most people believe that a will is gospel & don’t realise ALL wills can be contested by whomever & not necessarily by a family member. remember Pratt’s estate & the prostitute.
      You can make it more difficult to contest by having an Estate Planning Attorney write up your wishes than just doing the norm & going to the local solicitor at the local shopping centre or even stopping at the post office & buying a will kit

  9. 0
    0

    Just received a letter from Public Trustee stating that only concession card holders are eligible to use Public Trustee. In SA if you need a will made without being a concession holder you need the services of the lawyer.

  10. 0
    0

    Just received a letter from Public Trustee stating that only concession card holders are eligible to use Public Trustee. In SA if you need a will made without being a concession holder you need the services of the lawyer.

Load More Comments

FACEBOOK COMMENTS



SPONSORED LINKS

continue reading

Resources

The top-selling-souvenir from every country in the world

Do you buy souvenirs to remember your overseas holidays? If so, we imagine you have been looking at these very...

COVID-19

ACCC to keep a keen eye on travel issues this year

Australia's consumer watchdog expects to have its hands busy dealing with COVID-affected travel complaints this year. In his annual address...

Australia

Cruisers turn to superyachts to satisfy their cruise cravings

Typically, Australia is one of, if not, the biggest cruise market in the world. It wasn't so long ago that...

Accommodation

Tassie's top 5 Airbnbs

Tasmania does Airbnbs a little differently. Firstly, many stays boast perfect - or very nearly perfect - ratings. Secondly, there...

Destinations

The world's first 'museum of hangovers' has opened in Croatia

The Museum of Hangovers - set up, inevitably, by students - is an homage to pounding headaches, alcoholic antics and...

COVID-19

Australian border closure extended until June

Earlier this week, health minister Greg Hunt confirmed that the "human biosecurity emergency period", which enabled the government to place...

Destinations

International borders could reopen in June 2021

The Business Council of Australia (BCA) is waving a big stick at state and territory governments, with a plan to...

Australia

Five epic Aussie adventures

With international travel on pause, there is no shortage of epic adventures for those lucky enough to be stuck Down...

LOADING MORE ARTICLE...