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You know what they say, “Where there’s a Will, there’s a family”.

Almost everyone can relate a story of a family descending into unhappiness and uncertainty upon the death of the main breadwinner. To avoid the chaos and horror of a family being torn apart by arguments and disagreements over inheritances and how the Will has been set out, here are some suggestions to help ease the possible tensions:

Keep your estate planning up to date at all times and make sure your Last Will and Testament reflects the most current position;

  • Be crystal clear in expressing your wishes in your Will as your Executor has to follow your instructions to the letter;
  • Consider communicating and explaining your wishes to your beneficiaries during your lifetime to avoid any ill-feelings amongst those who will be left behind. If everyone knows and understands that your decisions were made thoughtfully, not by mistake or in anger, then arguments could be avoided;
  • When giving instructions to the practitioner who will draw up your Will, do this independently, so that you are not influenced by what someone else may wish for your assets.
  • Remember that the Master of the High Court is the final arbiter in matters relating to deceased estates, so there must be no room for doubt in the mind of the Master as to your wishes. Clarity of wishes will leave little or no room for challenges to the Will.

If you need advice on the drafting of your Will or advice on the structuring of your estate, please contact one of our advisors.

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your financial adviser for specific and detailed advice. Errors and omissions excepted. (E&OE)

Lesley Field
Executive Assistant
FPM Risk & Wealth Management
lesley@fpm.co.za
011 778 9300

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