Part of our job as Financial Planners, is to ensure that everything is in place to make life simple for the survivors when our clients. A core part of this is ensuring that our clients have Wills in place, but this is commonly one of the most difficult things to get our clients to do.
People don’t like thinking about death, and what will happen if they aren’t here, but having a valid Will in place will ensure that your loved ones will have a much easier time when you aren’t here. Half of Kiwis don’t have a will in place, and if you are under age 40, around 70% of people don’t have a will in place.
There are a few rules around writing a will, including:
- To be valid it should have two witnesses to your signature (who are actually there when you sign it, and who have nothing to do with executing the will, nor be a beneficiary or Trustee of the will.)
- You need to name an Executor (who will sort things out for you when you die).
- You need to have signed and dated the will.
- You should clearly identify what you want to happen to your assets and things (if you have precious things, or things that you particularly want to leave to someone.)
Your lawyer may offer to assist you with putting in place your Will when you buy or sell a home, there may be a small charge. You can go to a Trustee company (but be aware of their charges for administering your Will when you die), or you can use an online or templated option to write your will.
Diana Clement wrote an article in the NZ Herald about Online options in 2015, which you can find here:
Online options can make writing a will an easy task http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11456989
Here are some locations where you can set up your will online:
My-Bucketlist.co.nz http://www.my-bucketlist.co.nz/wills-and-documents/ ($49.95)
Ewills.co.nz http://www.ewills.co.nz/ (from $100)
KiwiBank – https://www.kiwibank.co.nz/business-banking/help-advice/free-online-will/ (Free online will)
The online will services have some algorithms built in that will stop you in your tracks if your will is getting too complicated and will refer you to someone to help you get it right.
So, now is the time, just go and do it!!
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For more blog entries that you might be interested in:
By Carey Church