Simple Wills are destructive as they do not protect Family Wealth.  

 Our legal partner Abbott and Mourly Lawyers dealt with a case recently of a deceased father who left $1M+ to his eldest son in his Will and within four days of payment of that gift the son’s spouse served the son divorce papers. They were not married at the time but had been living together for three years.  Over half the estate went to the defacto spouse in the property settlement.  And the mistake of giving assets or cash to surviving loved ones to see if eaten up, within a short period of time by litigation, business issues or separations is all too common as couples go for simple wills – that are cheap but costly.’

In this short video by Grant Abbott, Chair of the Succession, Asset Protection and Estate Planning Advisers Association on “Simple Wills v Protective Estate Planning” – so you don’t fall into the same mistake.

What is Protective Estate Planning?

A Protective Estate Plan is built on the pillars of well-crafted Wills, Enduring Powers of Attorney (EPOA), and Testamentary Trusts (TTs) with family wealth protection in mind. These protective legal documents serve as powerful tools for asset protection, decision-making during incapacity, and ensuring that your family wealth in protected after your passing.

The Benefits

  1. Clarity and Certainty: A well-structured Will eliminates ambiguities and ensures that your assets are distributed to a protective testamentary trust (TT) for you family’s protection.

  2. Control Over Assets: Through a Will with a TT, you maintain complete authority over how your assets are distributed and protected for a surviving spouse and your children for generations to come, which is particularly important for complex estates or beneficiaries with personal, financial or emotional issues.

  3. Reduced Legal Challenges: A comprehensive Will, when combined with a TT, makes it considerably more difficult for claimants to contest the estate. Although if an estranged child or ex-spouse has threatened to make a claim on your estate we will need to put in place a Family Protection Trust – whish provides family wealth protection for bloodline for generations to come – contact us immediately as contested Wills now make up 50% of estates and our legal partners have solutions that can be put in place now before it is too late.

  4. Decision Making during Incapacity: An EPOA ensures that trusted individuals can make essential decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated.

  5. Avoidance of ‘Default’ Rules: Without a Will, assets are distributed according to statutory ‘intestacy’ rules, which are not protective.

Benefits of Testamentary Trusts

  1. Asset Protection: TTs protect against potential claims on beneficiaries’ inherited assets, such as from creditors or in marital breakdowns.

  2. Tax Efficiency: TTs allow for income splitting among beneficiaries, leading to significant tax savings.

  3. Bloodline Protection: TTs ensure that assets remain within the family line, safeguarding them from being diverted due to marital or financial challenges.

  4. Flexibility: TTs can be tailored to suit individual needs and specific family dynamics or asset structures.

By creating a Protective estate plan, you’re creating a robust framework that not only protects your assets but also ensures that your family is protected under all circumstances. If you don’t have a Will or feel that your current Will needs to be legally reviewed, please contact us and we can arrange a complementary review with our legal partner Abbott and Mourly Lawyers, courtesy of our close relationship with this firm.