Home' Australian Printer Magazine : July 2013 Contents BUSINESS
ESTATE planning involves
more than just making a
will. It involves the transfer
of control of assets through
retirement or incapacity, not only on
Entities such as family trusts
and superannuation, and what
arrangements have been made to
control the assets in these vehicles,
also need to be considered, along
with potentially tough decisions
made. These could include the
involvement of some family
members in a family-owned business
to the exclusion of others.
Wills, family trust deeds, and
binding superannuation death
beneft nominations also need to
be updated as circumstances or
The following questions may
assist as a starting point when
considering estate planning issues:
Who will look after
personal and business
a airs if you lose capacity?
MOST business owners are
convinced their business will fail if
they aren't there to look after it. If
they haven't nominated someone to
step in if they lose mental or physical
capacity, and given them the legal
authority to make decisions, then
they are almost certainly right.
This is why succession planning is
Consideration needs to be given
to whether it is best to nominate
different people for different roles.
For example, someone to take over
control of the business; someone
else to look after personal fnancial
matters as executor, trustee or
enduring power of attorney in
nominated matters; and a third
person to be responsible for health
and medical decisions.
Do you have an up-to-
date will that covers all
IT'S hard to spend time thinking
about the worst-case scenarios but it
shouldn't be avoided. For instance,
what would happen if the entire
family -- including your spouse
and children -- all died at the same
time? Or, if you die and your spouse
remarries and has a new family?
Or, if family members remarry into
Do any bene ciaries have
FOR example, are any benefciaries
mentally impaired, have a drug or
spending problem, or require asset
protection? Have guardians for
minors been nominated in the will?
Is there a risk that
someone might make a
claim on the estate?
THIS is why professional help is
needed when drafting a will. The
rules governing who can make a
claim on the estate are often broader
than people realise.
For instance, a neighbour who
has helped bring in the groceries, or
walked the dog, is legally entitled to
make a claim. Regardless of whether
the claim is successful or not, the
legal costs of defending the case will
come out of the estate, reducing the
amount available for benefciaries.
Are any assets held outside
IF so, the legislation in that
country could override Australian
legislation, meaning assets may
not be distributed the way that was
How will superannuation
be dealt with?
ONE of the most common mistakes
in estate planning is including
superannuation assets in a will.
Superannuation cannot be directed
through a will; rather, a 'binding
nomination' must be made through
the superannuation fund itself.
Without such a nomination, the
trustees of the fund can decide who
receives the money.
When making a binding
nomination, the overall estate plan
should be taken into account to
see how such nominations affect
Is there a family trust and if
so, who will take it over?
ASSETS held within a family
trust are not held personally by
a particular individual, and thus
cannot be dealt with in their will.
Are there any charitable
Many people like to leave bequests
to philanthropic works in their
will. It's a good idea to plan
this thoroughly, as there may be
signifcant tax implications involved.
If a charitable foundation
is set up, who will act as
DOES your family, and dependents,
know what to expect in your will?
A critical part of estate planning
is letting people know your
intentions. It can avoid family
disputes later, and even lead to
improvements in the will.
* Andrew Buchan is a partner with
accountants and business and nancial
advisers HLB Mann Judd Brisbane
from HLB Mann
Judd says it is
time to make
sure their a airs
are in order,
and not just in
20 July 2013 - Australian Printer
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