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Seven steps to easier management of your estate

Don't make life difficult for the person trusted to manage your estate. Find the time to arrange your documents, contacts, online accounts and files in a convenient place, including giving them some cash.

Seven items your estate plan may have left out

Most people pay cursory attention to estate planning, limited to a will and maybe a chat with the children. Those who want to make their intentions clearer and easier for others should check these quick tips.

Six common estate planning errors

Even if you are in a wonderful relationship now, you should not assume you will never be in a blended family. We all need to plan accordingly by avoiding common mistakes in wealth planning.

Most estate planning for tax is inadequate

Many people are reluctant to plan financially for their death, and it's not simply a matter of passing money to heirs. Far more tax-effective techniques are available which can make inheritance simpler.

The Thorny Birds of McCullough's estate

The final act in the Colleen McCullough drama was a messy court case pitting her former husband against a Foundation, and featured unreliable witnesses the court did not trust.

How a carer inherited an estate

Carers may have a legitimate claim to an estate even if the deceased suffered from dementia when making a subsequent will. The Court seeks to establish whether testamentary capacity was disabled.

Talk to your family about ageing and your will

Retirees should discuss goals and plans with their adult children, including wills, finances, consequences of incapacitation and current plans. Includes a suggested 'Goals and Plans' document to kick off the conversation.

Limits to a will’s power over an SMSF

Unlike the rest of a person's estate assets, a will has no power over the decisions of trustees of a superannuation fund when it comes to the payment of a death benefit.

The impact of super changes on estate plans

The July 1 super changes will encourage many people to reconsider their estate planning, and the role of testamentary trusts should be part of the process. The range of choices has moved far beyond a will.

Trust alternatives after 1 July super changes

The changes to superannuation rules make rolling over an estate into a surviving spouse's pension account less attractive, reviving a role for testamentary trusts.

Careless estate planning: how artists can lose their legal voice

Using the example of an artist's body of work being highly sought-after once the artist dies highlights the importance of appointing the right executors - ones that will handle your affairs the way you intended.

Estate planning: where there’s a will, there’s a way

Part 2 in this series on estate planning focuses on wills. What a will can and cannot achieve, its objective, how wealth is transferred, and the importance of keeping things up-to-date.

Most viewed in recent weeks

The risk-return tradeoff: What’s the right asset mix for a 5% return?

Conservative investors are forced to choose between protecting capital and accepting lower income while drawing down capital to maintain living standards or taking additional risk. How can you strike a balance?

How long will my retirement savings last?

Many self-funded retirees will outlive their savings as most men and women now aged 65 will survive at least another 20 years. Compare your spending with how much you earn to see how long your money will last.

Buffett's favourite indicator versus all-in equities

Peter Thornhill shows how his personal portfolio has thrived under an 'all-in equities' strategy, but Warren Buffett's favourite valuation indicator says stock markets are priced at their most extreme ever.

In fact, most people have no super when they die

Contrary to the popular belief supported by the 'fact base' of the Retirement Income Review, four in every five Australians aged 60 and over have no super in the period up to four years before their death.

Five timeless lessons from a life in investing

40 years of investing is distilled into five crucial lessons. An overall theme is to embrace uncertainty to make an impact on how much you earn, how much you spend, how much you save and how much risk you take.

Super changes, the Budget and 2021 versus 2022

Josh Frydenberg's third budget contained changes to superannuation and other rules but their effective date is expected to be 1 July 2022. Take care not to confuse them with changes due on 1 July 2021.

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