We've all heard horror stories of families being left in the lurch when a loved one dies, leaving no clear instructions. Making collective decisions on a deceased person's behalf, while everyone is grieving in their own way, is one of the hardest, most stressful experiences that no one signs up for.
As a society, we don't talk about death enough – up to 75% of us haven't spoken with our parents about end of life wishes, and close to the same ratio think we need to!
If this isn't enough reason for your parent (or parents) to start discussing their own mortality and Estate planning, then perhaps these compelling reasons might help you support them in writing their Will and keeping it up-to-date:
• For any parent with children under 18, a valid, up-to-date Will enables them to nominate guardianship based on their values, beliefs, and needs of the child/ren, rather than the courts deciding.
• A Will secures your family's financial future. There is no guarantee that a deceased person's children and/or partner receive their assets and inheritance by default. Anyone with legal grounds to contest can, and if there's no valid Will, their Estate is at the hand of the laws in their state or territory.
• A Will outlines how they wish their finances to be managed. If they have ideas for how they'd like assets divided, for instance, setting yearly allowances for dependants, giving jewellery to their nieces or paying their grandchildren's school tuition, they must put these in a Will for it to be granted.
• Outside administration costs associated with the absence of a legal Will can mean unnecessary costs, delays and stress where loved ones ultimately pay the price through the diminished value of the Estate.
• A solicitor does not have to be employed to write a Will. If the thought of paying and meeting with a solicitor feels daunting, there are plenty of reputable places online to write a Will for a small fee. Just make sure they do their research first.
• A Will keeps your family united. Even close families can be torn apart when an Estate is left up to the state or grieving parties.
It's important to note an Estate is a blanket term for everything your parent/s own, including assets, cash, belongings, properties, pensions and investments.
You want them to secure and future-proof your family's future and not leave anything to chance. A Will is vital to protecting their legacy and your family's wellbeing after they have passed. In addition to a Will, and to ensure your parents' wishes, recipes, reflections, key details and contacts are stored safely, AddendoVault is a beautiful thing they can do for their loved ones*.
By creating a login, they can begin storing all their most important information while choosing who receives it and when. Sign up today and start the succession conversation!
*The wishes, directions and information stored in AddendoVault are not legally binding or enforceable. We suggest you make your own enquiries and seek legal advice about creating a legal Will.