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If you are ready to spruce up your finances this Spring, start with the single most important document of your life: your Will. Drafting and updating your Will regularly is crucial to ensure your loved ones are cared for when you are no longer here and National Wills Week this September is the ideal time to get it done.
Three crucial reasons why you need a will
- Should you die without a valid Will, an executor will be appointed by the Master of the Supreme Court. This means that a stranger with no insight into your wishes and intentions, will have the last say over your estate, instead of an executor you have chosen and informed of your wishes.
- Your assets will be distributed according to the intestate law of succession, instead of being distributed according to your wishes. As a result, your loved ones, such as your spouse or your children, may inherit less than you intended, while unintended beneficiaries may benefit from your estate.
- Your minor childrens’ inheritance might suffer, since anything they are entitled to receive, could be converted to a monetary form and transferred to the Guardian’s Fund until they turn eighteen (18), or transferred to their Guardian(s) for safe keeping. It’s important to note that it could be to the Guardian Gov Fund OR their nominated Guardian. For these reasons, it is crucial that you have a valid Will in place.
Three steps to getting the right will in place
- Contact us – we have partnerships in place with 4 types of Wills that are available in South Africa, from a Basic Will, Bank Drafted Will, Attorney Drafted Will and a Complimentary Will drafted by Fiduciary experts Capital Legacy. Not sure which one suits your needs, our financial coaches are here to guide you in making the right choice for your needs.
- Use a professional with a thorough understanding of the law of succession and experience in the administration of deceased estates to draft a Will that reflects your true intentions, using the correct wording to prevent any unintentional consequences.
- Keep your Will updated. When you pass away, the last Will you signed will be valid – there is no opportunity to change, review or cancel it. It is therefore crucial that you review your Will at least once a year to reflect your changing circumstances, such as the birth of a child, a divorce or the death of a beneficiary.
A valid, properly drafted Will is undoubtedly the most important document of your life – it provides peace of mind that your assets – the legacy you built through your lifetime of work – benefit only your chosen beneficiaries in the way you intended.