What is estate planning?
Very simply, it’s a way of ensuring that a person’s estate is passed onto their beneficiaries in the most financially efficient and tax effective way possible. It also puts protective measures in place for you should you no longer be capable of running your financial affairs.
When considering the right estate plan for you, think about three objectives: Make your plan easy to administer, develop a plan that will lower the taxes payable on your estate and figure out how to leave your estate so that it can be put to the best use possible by your heirs.
Issues to be considered when preparing an estate plan depends upon whether:
- you have sizeable assets and the personal circumstances of your beneficiaries require the creation of more complex trusts within your will;
- you have vulnerable beneficiaries with special needs;
- your investment or business structures are complex and may include a family discretionary trust, a self managed superannuation fund or a private company;
- you wish to minimise the tax liability of your estate or your beneficiaries, for example via superannuation or testamentary trusts.
Estate planning advice will help you to decide whether you require the preparation of a more complex will incorporating testamentary discretionary trusts, amendments to your family trust deed or self managed superannuation fund and a formal estate planning strategy document.