Estate planning can be complex, and the unintended consequences of a poorly drafted will can cause immeasurable stress to those left behind.
A will provides clear instruction about how a person wishes their hard-earned money to be distributed in the event of their death.
Our experienced wills and estate lawyers assist our clients to create an estate plan that protects their family. They can also put in place measures to protect their interests should they become ill or unable to make decisions for themselves in the future. These may include an Enduring Power of Attorney, an Enduring Guardian and an Advance Health Directive.
While a will is the cornerstone of an estate plan, there are assets that may not be covered by a will such as superannuation, business interests, life insurance and trusts. Lloyd & Lloyd Solicitors advises our clients on the measures available to deal with these assets in the event of their death.
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An Enduring Power of Attorney is a legal document that allows another person to make legal and financial decisions on behalf of a person. Unlike a General Power of Attorney, it remains in force if the person becomes unable to make these decisions for themselves, i.e. if they lose capacity.
An enduring guardianship appointment allows a trusted person (who agrees to the role) to make medical and lifestyle decisions on behalf of a person if they lose capacity. A person needs to inform the appointed person about their medical and lifestyle decisions and wishes—and update them if they change their mind. An Enduring Guardian document does not empower anyone to make financial decisions on behalf of a person if they lose capacity. If that is what is required, an Enduring Power of Attorney is needed.
An Advance Care Directive, sometimes called a living will, allows a person to provide instruction regarding their future health care including end of life stage medical decisions and comes into effect if they are ever unable to make decisions for themselves.