When people die, their properties and estate need to be settled. Making sure that they take care of any legal problems now will help their family in the future. As such, Wills and Probate in NSW is a rather complicated field of law, and people will need an adept estate or probate lawyer to wade through all the legal complications. And here are some issues that may arise when dealing with them:
- Dealing With An Estate Worth More Than $500,000
When dealing with wills and probate, the individual can avoid probate fees by using a special power of attorney to control their estate assets. This allows them to appoint someone else to manage their affairs after death and make sure that any money owed on credit cards or loans is paid off before other expenses are paid (including taxes).
There are some limitations, though, such as:
- For this option, clients must have an asset value of at least $20 million.
- They must have already had an attorney-general’s consent before they died (to ensure no one else has a claim against that asset).
- Owing Money After The Death Of A Person
If there is still some money left in the estate after paying out all outstanding debts and taxes, a probate lawyer will apply for discharge from bankruptcy. Once this has been granted and registered with ASIC (Australian Securities & Investments Commission), the money can be remitted as outlined in the will by the client. And if there are no such instructions, it’s up to the NSW courts to reach a favourable conclusion.
- Objection to a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration
Wills and Probate in NSW have regulations that state that when a person dies and leaves the property, their will should be probated to determine if the will is valid. This process involves proving that the deceased had capacity when they made their last will. And suppose people believe there was no capacity or undue influence in making the loved one’s final wishes. In that case, they can object to a grant of probate or letters of administration.
There are three main grounds for objecting to such a grant:
- Undue Influence
- Lack of Capacity,
- Fraudulent Misrepresentation.
Several people in NSW have the legal right to deal with an estate if there is no will. These include:
- A trustee in bankruptcy – If the spouse or partner died while they were bankrupt or owed money, their affairs would be handled by their trustee in bankruptcy. This may not be what they would choose, but it is one way their loved one’s wishes can still be respected.
- A trustee of the estate – This person may have been appointed by a court order or by consenting beneficiaries (if there is enough money to appoint them). If this happens, then it becomes crucial for everyone involved to know exactly what powers and responsibilities this person has so that everyone knows where they stand legally when making decisions about how much money should go towards paying debts and how much needs to go into a trust account for future education costs or other expenses.
- The widow/widower under intestacy law in NSW (this means if no will exists) – In NSW, if someone dies without leaving behind any children, then their spouses automatically become their next-of-kin under intestacy laws which state that all assets must first go towards providing for dependants before going back into general circulation.