Estate and Asset Planning and Protection
There is an increasing awareness of the need to carefully consider the structures within which assets are held both while a person is alive and after their death. Careful planning can lead to benefits in terms of potential tax savings and protection of the assets that you have worked hard to accumulate.
We can help you with:-
ESTATE AND ASSET PLANNING
You may need more than just a will and enduring power of attorney.
It is essential to consider assets which do not pass under a will such as assets held jointly, held in a family trust or held by a family company and to appropriately address such things as succession of control of trusts, the need to appoint a replacement trustee or company director and how shares in the family company should be dealt with under the shareholders’ wills.
Wills may be quite simple or more complex with the inclusion of testamentary discretionary trusts. A testamentary discretionary trust is a discretionary trust established by the terms of a will.
The principal benefits of a testamentary discretionary trust are twofold. Firstly, they allow greater flexibility in distribution of the estate which may assist beneficiaries to save tax. Secondly, they can assist in protecting assets where a beneficiary may become vulnerable due to financial difficulties, relationship breakdown or issues such as drug, alcohol or gambling addiction.
POWERS OF ATTORNEY
A power of attorney authorises another person to make decisions and sign documents on your behalf that are legally binding on you. Great care must be taken when deciding to whom this power is to be given and whether any limitations should to be placed on the extent of the attorney’s power.
We can advise you of the forms of power of attorney available including enduring powers of attorney which operate beyond the point at which you lose your mental capacity. We can assist with advance health directives which enable you to have your say in relation to your future health care notwithstanding that you have lost your ability to communicate your wishes.
BUSINESS SUCCESSION PLANNING
Careful thought should be given to the structure under which a business is conducted and the effect on that business of the death or incapacity of you or your business partner. We can assist you in relation to shareholders agreements, partnership agreements and buy/sell agreements.
We attend to administration of deceased estates including obtaining probate of wills from the Supreme Court of Queensland, where necessary.
We understand that the period following the loss of a family member is an emotional time and seek to administer and distribute estates with a minimum of fuss.
For further requires please contact Gary Hugill.