Trusts and Family Planning

Do you have a testamentary trust? Is your testamentary trust up to date?

A Testamentary Trust is a trust created in your Will. It only comes into existence on your death and you can establish more than one testamentary trust on your death for the benefit of each of your beneficiaries.

The types of trusts that can be created are largely limited by your imagination. Examples include Life Interests, Rights of Occupation, Education Trusts, Superannuation Death Benefit Trusts, Special Disability Trusts, Capital Protected Trusts, Fixed Trusts, Beneficiary Controlled Trusts, Staggered Time Release Trusts, All Needs Protective Trusts, Inactive Trusts and non Beneficiary Controlled Trusts.

Preparing a Testamentary Trust Will or reviewing your existing Testamentary Trust Will may involve:

  • Reviewing the method of holding assets – possible conversions from joint ownership to sole ownership;
  • Reviewing superannuation nominations;
  • Reviewing life insurance policy ownership;
  • Considering Department of Social Security entitlements;
  • Considering potential capital gains tax liabilities;
  • Considering the financial and personal position of proposed beneficiaries.

Failure to undertake this analysis may result in severe unintended consequences if your Will is prepared where you believe the Will will deal with all assets including non-Will assets.

Regular review of your Will and a close association with your financial advisor is essential to ensure that your Will remains appropriate in an environment of changing laws and personal circumstances.