Which bits of paper do we need ?

Discussion in 'Estate Planning' started by TryHard, 17th Aug, 2005.

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  1. TryHard

    TryHard Well-Known Member

    17th Aug, 2005
    Hi :)

    Wife and I currently have the following structure :

    1. Me - director of 2 companies - one is our trading entity (owns the business I work for) and the other is Coporate Trustee of 2 HDT's
    2. Wife - owns our PPOR and our 'future' PPOR (currently an IP)
    3. Trusts - own shares and one IP
    4. SMSF - both are trustees of SMSF
    5. Me - have income protection and disability insurance
    6. Wife - covered

    We have just had our first (and only!) child. We have been remiss in not re-organising will etc - we currently each have Wills and Enduring Power of Attorney circa 2000.

    We have also asked some friends to be Ella's (the little one) guardians in the event of our untimely demise.

    So I was wondering what list of docs I need to ask my solicitor to provide (in case I miss something :p) I guess :

    1. Wills
    2. Enduring Powers of Attorney
    3. Some form of agreement for Ella's guardianship ?
    4. Transferring any director responsibilities and beneficiary rights on our death ? (ie. SMSF, companies etc)
    5. Is it "Testamentary" Trust needed if both of us kark it at the same time ?

    Any advice much appreciated :)
  2. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Well-Known Member

    10th Jun, 2005

    Hi Try

    You're actually doing pretty well in the personal admin stakes compared to most people. You'd be astounded how many people don't even have a current will. The fact you've got Income Ptr insurance (and your post suggests some stand alone trauma cover for your wife) also earns you some high marks!

    Okay picking up on the queries you've made:

    1) & 5) wills & testamentary trusts - with your lawyer you should review your wills to see that they are still appropriate. Now that you have a child a Testamentary Trust will would be a very good idea. And it's not just beneficial if you both "kark" it at the same time. TT's really come into their own when just one of you pops off. We're writing an article on the benefits of TTs at the moment and we'll release it in the coming months...so stay tuned. ;)

    2) EPA's - again, review and update as required in consultation with your lawyer. Bear in mind also that in some states you can make a kind of future health directive which stipulates what life preserving treatment you do and more importantly do NOT want to have administered if you're unable to make those decisions for yourself.

    3) Guardianship is typically addressed in your will, but the appointment can be made by separate deed. What I'd suggest is that you wrap this up in your will review.

    4) Appointment of directors to companies will be driven by the shareholders. Which may be trusts in your case or it may be you and your wife. If you own the shares personally then they will be dealt with in accordance with your will. If the trust owns them then the trustee will continue to hold them for the benefit of the beneficiaries. In a discretionary trust well you'll just be "unavailable" :D to accept distributions but presumably your wife and daughter will be amongst the listed classes of beneficiaries. If you have units in a unit trust then if you own them they'll be dealt with under your will and if owned by a discretionary trustee...as per before.

    Your trust deeds should deal with replacement of the appointer. Commonly it will permit the current appointer's will to direct the replacement. So wrap this up with your will review as well.

    Some other docs to think about include a CGT register for each of your "entities". Also there should be minute books which record the trustee/directors decisions.

    You're doing well Tryhard. You won't need to try too much harder to be fully up-to-date. ;)

  3. TryHard

    TryHard Well-Known Member

    17th Aug, 2005
    Great info

    Thanks loads Nigel - that's a great help to work out what I need to ask for (sometimes its best to know most of it upfront :) ) However I think I'll hold off on some for the article on TT's - sounds great ...

    I just realised in my post I stopped typing when I got to the missus - that was meant to say "Covered by super, tpd and trauma from Council employer". Anyway that's by the by :)

    Thanks again - Its on tomorrow's To Do list (I don't like achieving too many things in one day!)

    Many thanks