Wills & Estates
The Family Law team at Bowen Buchbinder Vilensky offers specialist advice and assistance on a range of estate planning, wills and probate areas on a Fixed Fee Price basis.
Our services include:
- Specialist drafting of wills for complex estates
- Enduring powers of attorney
- Enduring powers of guardianship
- Advanced Health Directives (Living Wills)
- Challenging wills
- Testamentary trusts
- Directorship and shareholder agreements
- Probate of estates through the Supreme Court
- Commencing and defending challenges to estates under the Inheritance Act
- Mediation of family inheritance disputes
- Transfer of properties and assets
- Business succession planning
- Formulating strategies for provision and care of beneficiaries
- Protecting assets from challenges
- Estate administration
Estate planning is an essential, but all too often neglected part of life. Without a will and estate plan, your family may end up in bitter and costly legal disputes over your estate. Without a good and thoroughly considered estate plan, when the time comes, your home, business and investments may not only end up in the wrong hands, but may be the subject of repeated disputes between family members, business partners or unconsidered beneficiaries. The legal costs of these disputes are normally paid from your estate and may substantially diminish the value of your estate to your beneficiaries.
Estate planning may also incorporate testamentary trusts for assets to be left to children or disabled beneficiaries, guardianship of children, powers of attorney and succession of business assets and partnerships. The legal implications of not having a will that is up to date and reflects the changing circumstances of modern families and businesses, or not having a will at all, can be enormous. An out of date will may not adequately provide for family members or people who should be cared for by your estate after you have gone. Disgruntled beneficiaries may have no option but to take the matter to the Supreme Court. Not having a will leaves the law of intestacy to apply, and the State will determine who gets your assets, often resulting in a Supreme Court action.
We can arrange and prepare comprehensive and up to date wills and estate planning documents that not only reflect your wishes in a clear and concise way, but can also ensure a smooth transition of assets to the right beneficiaries.
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How we have helped others
We have successfully acted for people in the following circumstances:-
1. The children of a deceased person who opposed a challenge to their parents’ Will by their step-parent;
2. A child of the deceased who sought a greater share of their parents’ Estate;
3. The Executors of a Will who opposed a claim for a greater share of the Estate brought by a child of the deceased;
4. The Beneficiaries in an Estate where the deceased did not have the required capacity to make a Will;
5. The Executors of a Will in an Estate where it was alleged that the deceased made their last Will under undue influences;
6. The Executor of a deceased parent’s Estate that was challenged by the deceased’s step-children;
7. A spouse who was completely left out of their deceased spouse’s Will;
8. The Executor of a deceased parent’s Will subject of a challenge by the deceased’s spouse;
9. An Executor of the Will who brought an application for removal of a co-executor because the co-executor was acting unreasonably;
10. The Beneficiaries of a Will who opposed an Application by the Executor for commission from the Estate;
11. Beneficiaries who do not understand their rights under a Will;
12. Executors who would require the clarification of their role as Executor and their obligation towards Beneficiaries in both estate administrations and disputes;
13. An Executor who required a report into the deceased’s finances to ensure that the Estate was administered properly;
14. A Litigation Guardian who was appointed to defend an incapacitated beneficiary’s interest in an estate dispute;
15. An Executor who did not know how to administer the Will because the Willmaker did not name the beneficiaries correctly.
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