Estates Law Services
What is Special about our Estates Services?
1. We provide services that you specify. We do not provide a "one size fits all" service.
If you have simple circumstances and you simply want a simple will for a fixed fee - we do that.
If you want a will that assists you to manage potential claimants against your will - we can provide that too.
If you want us to rely on your explanation of the facts of your legal, financial and personal circumstances and get a basic set of wills, testamentary trusts, powers of attorney and medical directives documented - all for a fixed fee - we can do that quickly and efficiently.
If you have a business or investment group which you and / or your family have control of - and you want to make provision for family members once you are deceased - we have done this for clients for many years, and we can do that for you. We can also assist you to manage succession while you are alive too.
2. Comprehensive Estates Service Process available
Our comprehensive estates service is different from many estates services provided by solicitors due to 2 factors in our service process:
a) Estates Planning Research
Where, in our professional judgement it is prudent, we do not rely on the facts and information provided soley by a client.
This is because our experience in providing these services over many years has been that in some client circumstances there are often differences - between what clients believe their financial and legal arrangements to be - and what they in fact are.
The reason for the difference can sometimes be due to a client's lack of detailed knowledge of these matters (having relied understandably on advisers), or due to the passage of time and the vintage of relevant legal documents, or sometimes due to errors made by legal and financial advisors, or family investment or business controllers or staff in the past, which have never been previously identified.
Our approach of not relying solely on client reported facts, where we think this unwise in our professional judgement, has evolved as a result of our practical experience over many years. We have an instinct for when we need to dig deeper into a clients circumstances.
In this situation, where we think research is prudent, we will of course ask you permission to do so, explain the reasons why and priovide you with a basic cost of research. Often the cost is very minimal - a few search fees or a 10 minute database search. Often the problem saved - by avoiding a family dispute after you have deceased - is priceless. In any case - its always up to you.
If the facts are not as you think - and we rely on these - then the estates services have a high risk of being ineffectual and the consequences can include for example: family ill feeling between your loved ones, family disputes, court cases and legal costs, unexpected tax liabilities etc.. These will obviously not be your problem - as you wil be deceased - but they may be the problem of your loved ones. We are confident with a professional process that is focussed on getting it right - we can avoid these pitfalls.
b) Collaboration with our Tax and Superannuation Accountants
This is undertaken - as needed only - to assist in considering the tax, business or superannuation implications of any estates arrangments.
We have been able to ensure clients make proper arrangements to prevent unnecessary tax liabilities resulting from the estates arrangements they needed.
When this is necessary, we are mindful to not just have a good understanding of your legal circumstances, but also to understand the situation within the relevant entities and legal structures, and consider the impact on desired estates arrangements on your financial (including tax) circumstances.
Examples of potentially relevant information include information relating to: assets, liabilities, cost bases, Pre-CGT Assets, exempt CGT Assets, status of assets [principal place of residence], tax losses, and franking credits, etc.. We can obtain information from you and your records and also from public records or relevant business documents to review enable us to ascertain these circumstances. This enables us to take these considerations into account where appropriate.
Our highly experienced tax and superannuation accountants are available to assist us as part of this service as required.
Contact us for a fixed fee - even for comprehensive estates work. We can give a fixed fee because of our experience - we know what is involved and so what the costs will be - once we talk to you about your circumstances. Our fixed fees are provided to you in writing by email on request.