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Reasons to make a valid Will

Without an up-to-date and valid Will, you are missing out on a critical opportunity to make proper arrangements for your family’s future.

For a Will to be considered valid:
– it must be in writing
– the will-maker must have the mental capacity
– it must be voluntarily signed by the will-maker or by some other person in the presence of and at the direction of the will-maker
– the will-maker’s signature must be made or acknowledged in front of two or more witnesses, present at the same time
– must be signed, dated and witnessed by two other parties
– the signature of the will-maker or person signing at the direction of, and in presence of the will-maker must be made with the intention of executing the Will.

Here are five reasons why you should make a valid Will:

Provide for the people you care about
If you don’t have a Will it is unlikely that what you want to happen will happen. Instead, your estate will be governed by the laws of intestacy under the Succession Act 2006 and the people that you would like to see benefit from your estate may not.

Leave particular gifts or items for friends or relatives
If you have particular gifts or items that you would like to see passed to particular friends or relatives this isn’t possible unless you have a Will which states your wishes.

Appoint someone you trust to be your executor
When you make a Will you have the choice of appointing your executor; this is the person who will administer your estate and distribute your assets in accordance with your wishes.

Leave particular instructions
If you have pets that you would like a friend or relative to look after or you have particular burial wishes, these can be included in your Will.

Appoint a guardian for your children
You cannot appoint a guardian for your minor children without a Will. If both parents of the children died, guardianship of your minor children would likely pass to the grandparents, and it may be necessary for the Court to decide which grandparents.

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News

SMSFs: beware of illegal early super release

July 13, 2018

The Australian Tax Office (ATO) is reminding self-managed super fund (SMSF) trustees to beware of allowing members to access their super early.

A self-managed super fund (SMSF) trustee must meet a condition of release before any funds can legally be released.

The ATO can issue severe penalties if you or a SMSF member access your super before you are legally entitled to do so.

Some consequences of getting caught up in an illegal super scheme include the disqualification of trustees, imposition of administrative penalties, the fund being made non-complying and prosecution.

The Tax Office encourages those members who have been involved in an illegal super scheme to contact them immediately. The ATO will review your voluntary disclosure and take your circumstances into account when determining any penalties.