It is important to review and update your Will on a regular basis. You need to consider changes that occur not only in your life, but also the lives of your children and parents. You also need to consider any changes to the law which might effect your estate planning you have already put in place.
You do not have to be deceased for your estate planning to be investigated and challenged in the family court. For example, if you make provision during your lifetime for your children and they separate from their partners, your estate planning may become a relevant issue in your child's separation.
Your child's partner might argue your child is effectively in control of your assets and the court should take the value of your assets into account when the court examines the assets of your child.
Estate planning should begin prior to you accumulating any wealth. It may be too late to protect your assets if you wait until you have allready established yourself.
For example, if you establish or buy a business you need to consider whether to hold the business in your own name, in a partnership, trust or company. Then you need to consider how the structure you establish could be challenged in the family court in the future. The challenge could come from your current partner, a future partner, your children or their partners.
In our experience, it is not possible to guarantee that your assets will be 100% protected, but you are able to make it very difficult for your assets to be challenged.
This is the process of putting in place a plan for the distribution of your assets in the event of your death.
It is an attempt to eliminate uncertainties over the distribution and to maximise the value of your estate by reducing taxes and other expenses.
We can assist you if your estate planning is challenged in the family court. You should contact us as soon as possible in the event any of your children are going through a rough patch with their partner.