What is a will?

Estates

A will is a legal document that sets out your wishes for the distribution of your assets after your death.  Having a clear, valid and up-to-date will is the best way to ensure that your assets are protected and are given away in accordance with your wishes.

Making a will is a positive step you can take to:

  • Provide for the people you care about;
  • Leave specific gifts to certain people;
  • Appoint a person to carry out the instructions in your will (your executor);
  • Leave any other instructions you may have (for example, funeral arrangements);
  • Make gifts to charity (if you wish); and
  • Express your wishes about guardianship of children after you die.

Why should I make a will?

If you die without a will, you don’t have any say about how your estate is distributed.  If you die without a will (known as ‘dying intestate’) the law sets out how your estate is divided and who will receive what from your estate.

Who can make a Will?

Anyone over 18 can make a will as long as they have mental capacity.  Sometimes, and in some cases, children under 18 can make a will.  Wills can be made by the courts for people who do not have capacity to make a will themselves.  Also, it is important that your intentions are expressed clearly, and that your will is legally valid.

If you would like further information about making a will, please contact our Wills and Estates team at CRH Law on 07 3236 2900 or enquiry@crhlaw.com.au.