If you are over 18 years old you should make a Will even if you don’t own a lot. If you die without a will you are “intestate” which means your assets can only be distributed under the laws of the Succession Act and your estate may not go where you wanted it to.
Are Wills Complex?
A will can be as simple or as complicated as it needs to be. The most important thing is to make sure your will is properly executed, otherwise it may be invalid. a valid legal Will vary from state to state. The Succession Act 1981 (Qld) requires that any testator must:
- Be over 18 years old;
- Have testamentary capacity (i.e. must not be suffering from a mental illness that prevents them from knowing the nature of their estate and the effect that their wishes will have on the beneficiaries);
- Record their last testament in writing, and
- Have the testament signed in the presence of and signed by two witnesses in order for your Will to be valid.
Why should I make a Will?
If you do not make a legal Will, your estate will be distributed under intestacy laws. Family members may be more likely to make claims on your estate if they believe that they would have been left more in a Will than what they will receive under the laws of intestacy. You will also be unable to choose who administers your estate as well as their being a greater likelihood of disappointed beneficiaries.
What about free Will services or Do it Yourself Will Kits?
The old adage “you get what you pay for” is particularly true when it comes to Wills. Out of any document you may write in your lifetime, a Will may be the most important at all. Trying to save a few dollars instead of taking professional advice can and often does cause grief and heartache for family members after your death.
Do it yourself Will kits make a lot of money for estate lawyers when the family has to try to overcome a mistake in a Will, such as a failure to have it properly witnessed. Such mistakes are easily avoided by having your will drafted by the professional lawyers at Gold Coast Estate Law. Please call us for a no obligation chat on (07) 5532 9744.