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Contesting an estate

Written by Vik Sundar on .
It is often assumed that when you die, your Will has the final say as to where your assets pass and to whom. What you may not realise is that if someone believes they have not been adequately provided for by you at death, your Will may be challenged in Court. This type of claim is known as a family provision claim.   What is family provision and why can someone make a claim against my estate if I have a Will? Family provision is an application made to the Supreme Court for a portion or larger portion of a deceased person’s estate. A claim for family provision can be made …

What happens if I don’t have a Will?

Written by Vik Sundar on .
If you die without leaving a valid Will, you die ‘intestate’. Dying intestate may undue uncertainty and complexity for your loved ones that could have been avoided with a valid Will. No control over how your assets are dealt with If you die without a will, your assets may not be distributed according to your wishes. Instead, they will pass according to a statutory formula which varies throughout each state and territory in Australia. In New South Wales, for example, the Succession Act 2006 (NSW) lists beneficiaries in order of next-of-kin, from spouse (or a spouse together with any…

Philanthropy and how to structure your giving

Written by Vik Sundar on .
Many people seek to make a real difference and give back to their community through philanthropy. If you would like to make gifts to charity on an ad hoc basis, the most obvious option is to donate directly to the chosen charity. Provided the charity is listed as a Deductible Gift Recipient (‘DGR’) for tax purposes, you should be entitled to receive a tax deduction for the monies donated. Alternatively, if you wish to have access to your funds during your lifetime, you may instead choose to make a gift to a charity in your will. However, if you wish to go beyond simply writing a ch…