Estate Planning Accountants & Advisors
The two certainties in life are death and taxes. We all know we have to pay our taxes every year, however death is unpredictable. The goal of effective estate planning is to ensure the welfare of dependants, the security of assets, and effective business succession, whilst minimising any taxes.
What is estate planning and who does it?
Estate planning is the process of making decisions and arrangements for the disposal of your estate, while you’re still alive and capable of making those decisions and arrangements. Involving an accountant in the estate planning process is sensible because many of the decisions to be made are financial ones. Anyone about to update their estate planning affairs would want to avoid tax pitfalls or take advantage of tax concessions.
What are some of the key decisions to be made in estate planning?
- Determining the executors of the will
- Asset identification, preparation, and security
- Security of income for dependants, including special security benefits
- Provide access to tax concessions and beneficiaries
- Specific gifts and bequests
- Consideration of the control of assets held inside family trusts and companies
Why see Billings and Ellis about estate planning?
Billings and Ellis have been advising clients on estate planning matters for over 40 years. Asset protection, tax minimisation and superannuation matters are our specialities. We will provide you a comprehensive plan to cover your specific circumstances and to keep legal expenses minimised, we can use our trusted solicitors to draft the legal documents. We are also more than happy to act as an executor on your will and we can store all important documents securely in our safe for your convenience and peace-of-mind. Feel free to give us a call – there is no charge for any initial consultation about your estate planning needs.
registered births in Victoria for 2014
Some general information about passing away in the state of Victoria…
Bank accounts in joint names are generally not restricted by the death of one joint owner. If you’re not a joint account holder, it’s a good idea to provide the executor of your estate with your bank account details and keep them updated. Some banks will give an executor immediate access to bank account balances of less than $5000 even before probate is granted to the executor. If you’re about to undertake anything a bit risky, like undergoing a major surgical procedure, or embarking on an adventure holiday, it might be a good idea to create a special account just in case anything unexpected happens to you, with a $5,000 deposit for ready access by your executor to cover any immediate expenses. If you were to pass away while you were working or travelling overseas, for example, there would be some funds instantly available to help bring you home.
If your real estate is jointly owned, it automatically becomes the property of the surviving joint owner. Otherwise, the executor of your estate arranges for the transfer of your real estate interests to beneficiaries under the terms of your will.
Three well-known Victorians who famously passed away suddenly and unexpectedly…
John Ilhan, founder of the Crazy John‘s mobile phone empire, died aged 42 after collapsing during his routine early-morning walk. John left behind a wife, Patricia, and four children, as well as an enterprise which ultimately closed without his continuing leadership and entrepreneurship. On the very same day he died, John was to be advised that he should make an appointment within the next three days to see a specialist about indications of a heart problem.