The Wills and Estates team at WJM has experienced and empathetic staff able to assist you with your estate planning, estate administration or estate litigation.
Now, more than ever, people are leaving estates of significant value. Property prices and compulsory superannuation have increased the value of people’s estates. Children from different relationships can impact upon estate administration and family relationships.
We can help you with a variety of matters, including:
- The preparation of Wills (simple and complex, including testamentary trusts)
- Enduring Powers of Attorney
- Applications for the Appointment of Administrators or Guardians at VCAT
- Obtaining Grants of Probate and Letters of Administration
- Administering estates
- Litigation arising from estates, including challenges to Wills
- Retirement Village or nursing home agreements
- Advice in relation to Superannuation planning, including Self-Managed Superannuation Funds.
Our team includes a Law Institute of Victoria Wills and Estates Accredited Specialist, experienced consultant, together with experienced lawyers and clerks.
If you have a Wills and Estate issue or query, then contact one of the WJM Wills and Estate team:
- Aaron Jolly
- Carmel Woodward
- Alison Mitchell
- Karlene Wightman
- Georgia Martin
- Debbie Lear
- Melissa Purcell
Wills, Testamentary Trusts and Succession Planning
WJM can offer specialist advice on how to put in place succession plans which will benefit your family. We provide advice to a variety of clients, ranging from those with modest estates to people leaving large legacies to their family and/or other beneficiaries.
WJM will take detailed instructions from you to ensure we understand your situation. From this we shall prepare a Will which is clear and accurately describes your wishes.
Wills containing Testamentary Trust are being used more often as a way to preserve assets for future generations. After taking detailed instructions from you, we will be able to advise you whether a Testamentary Trust would be beneficial in your circumstances.
Depending on your circumstances, we can provide you with advice on including protective trusts within your Wills to protect family members who are not in a position to manage their own affairs.
WJM can also advise you on Special Disability Trusts which can provide for the future care of children with a severe disability.
Enduring Powers of Attorney
Enduring Powers of Attorney allow you to give another person power to make certain decisions for you, or to enter into certain transactions on your behalf. These powers continue in the event you lose capacity to make those decisions yourself.
WJM has extensive experience in assisting clients with preparing and executing Enduring Powers of Attorney for both Financial and Personal matters as well as Enduring Powers of of Attorney (Medical Treatment). WJM will ensure your Enduring Powers of Attorney comply with all current legal requirements.
WJM can provide you with effective advice as to which powers would be appropriate in certain circumstances and advice on who would be the most appropriate person to be given those powers.
The lawyers and clerks at WJM have vast experience in the administration of deceased estates from simple affairs to the most complex of estates.
Our experience enables us to provide executors with practical and personal advice at their time of loss. We understand that the process can be overwhelming and our compassionate staff can help you carry out all parts of the administration process from Probate to estate taxation.
We have extensive experience in assisting clients with making a claim against a deceased estate or defending claims made against a deceased estate.
We understand the highly sensitive nature of these disputes and we offer practical and personal advice to our clients.
Where possible we help our clients try to resolve the dispute at the earliest opportunity. Where this is not possible, we will represent you through both the County and Supreme Courts of Victoria until the dispute is resolved.
Superannuation Death Benefits
Superannuation can be one of your biggest assets and this makes it an important consideration in your succession planning.
Many people are surprised to learn the Superannuation Benefits do not necessarily form part of their estate and therefore are not necessarily distributed in accordance with their Wills. Special consideration needs to be given to Superannuation in your succession planning and the Wills and Estates team at WJM is able to provide you with strategic advice about your Superannuation Benefits.
The decision of a Superannuation Fund to pay Superannuation Benefits to a certain person or persons can be disputed. WJM can assist you with challenging these decisions through the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal.