7 Estate Planning Mistakes You Should Avoid

Estate Planning

Although in the past it may have been, estate planning isn’t just for the super rich anymore. Rather, it’s a very useful tool that should be used by pretty much everyone to make sure that their affairs are in order if they unexpectedly pass away.

However, estate plans can be complicated. A lot of people have trouble creating their first estate plan, making mistakes and doing things the wrong way. With this in mind, I’ve put together a short list of the top seven estate planning mistakes to avoid. They include:

  1. Doing things yourself

Although it can be tempting to save a bit of money by putting your estate plan together by yourself, I’d seriously recommend against doing this. In reality, estate plans are complicated collections of legal documents that should be put together by a professional estate and wills lawyer.

  1. Forgetting to plan for minors

One of the most important components of estate plans deals with the future of minor children and other dependants if both parents were to pass away before they reached adulthood. Unfortunately, a lot of people forget to plan for their children. It’s important to at least name a guardian, among other things.

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What is Spousal Maintenance And Do I Need to Think About It?

Spousal Maintenance

If you’re going through or thinking about going through a divorce or de facto relationship break up then you need to make sure that you’re aware of spousal maintenance. In some cases, one partner may have to pay spousal maintenance to their ex, even after the separation is finalized.

If you’re not sure what spousal maintenance is and why you need to be aware of it then you should speak to your local family lawyers for more information. This article will give you a brief overview, but shouldn’t be taken as professional information.

What is spousal maintenance?

If a couple’s separation leads to a situation where one one party can’t support themselves financially then the other party may be required to pay some form of spousal maintenance.

Situations like this usually arise when only one partner in the couple worked while they were together – for example, where one partner worked and the other looked after children.

Spousal maintenance comes in two forms: lump sum payments and regular periodic payments. You may be told to pay either, depending on your situation.

It’s also important to note that spousal maintenance and child support are two different things and that both can have to be paid.

When am I entitled to spousal maintenance?

It can be difficult to prove that you should be getting spousal maintenance. Generally, your claims will only be approved if you can genuinely prove that you can’t support yourself with your current income or savings, even though you’re trying.

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4 Important Things To Think About When Making Your First Will

Making Your First Will

Creating a new will can be difficult, especially if it’s your first. There are a lot of things to think about, and a lot of important legal considerations to take into account.

Ultimately, it’s usually a good idea to speak with a lawyer about your will before signing it, especially if you have a lot of assets or a complicated estate.

However, there are a few things you should keep in mind when you’re writing your first will. Four important things to think about include:

  1. Understand That You Can Write Your Own Will

Although it’s recommended to speak with your lawyers when you’re creating your first will, it’s actually perfectly acceptable to do it yourself. If you do decide to write your own will then you should probably use a will kit, but it’s actually even possible to write one from scratch if you want to.

Once again, if you decide to go down this road, you need to make sure that you include all of the relevant information. Failing to do so could result in your will not being legally binding when you pass away.

  1. Make Sure You Include Enough Information

It’s very important to make sure that you include as much information as you can in your will. Doing this will keep things simple for your family and friends when you pass, because they won’t have to deal with assets not included in your will or brushed over without enough details.

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Parenting and Divorce – 5 Things You Need To Be Aware Of

Parenting and Divorce

Divorce can be an extremely difficult thing to go through, especially if you have children with the partner that you’re separating from. A decent family lawyer can help you deal with the legal side of your divorce, but it’s important to make sure that you’re familiar with the things that you have to do.

With this in mind, we’ve put together a short list some of the most important things that you need to be aware of if you’re a parent going through a divorce. They include:

  1. Be aware of your kids and what they’re going through

Divorce isn’t only hard for you and your soon to be ex partner. Your children will probably suffer as well. They might be anxious, stressed out and worried about what’s going to happen to them – particularly if they aren’t old enough to really understand what’s happening.

You can make things easy for your kids by thinking of their needs at all times. Try not to argue around them, and if possible, try and come to a mutual agreement with your former partner about things like rules and co-parenting.  

  1. Consider custody agreements

If you and your former partner really don’t get on well, or if you’re separating because of an abusive relationship, you should consider fighting for custody of your children. By doing this you can make sure that they’re going to grow up in a loving home.

If you do decide to go down this path then you should definitely employ the services of a professional family lawyer. Family lawyers will be able to advise you on the best course of action while helping you build your custody case.

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