These 4 simple steps are effective ways to protect your estate from dispute:
1. Making gifts of property before you pass away
If you have a treasured item that you want to give to a specific person it is advisable to give it to them before you die. This will make it impossible for it to be granted to someone else in an estate claim as it will no longer be part of your estate but owned by the person you gave it to.
2. Put your property into a family trust
You can transfer ownership of your property to a family trust. This means that you will no longer own it and therefore it will not be part of your estate and is thus protected from any estate claims.
3. Explain your bequests
Give written explanations for why you are leaving property to certain people. This will not protect your will from dispute directly, however it can assist the court in making a decision if there is any dispute.
4. Do your best to make everyone happy
The best way to minimise claims is to do your best to provide for everyone who would have a fair and moral claim upon your estate. If you can ensure everyone is satisfied then no one should have any desire to dispute your will. This may be impractical but it might help to reduce the number of people who might want to make a claim. Following these tips will not prevent challenges entirely, that is not possible, but they might help to mitigate the number and successfulness of claims.
If your estate is currently being challenged or you wish to make a claim on an estate, we can help you through the process, contact Jeremy Sutton.
“The information posted on this website is prepared for a general audience, without investigation into the facts of any particular case. This information is no substitute for legal advice and does not create a lawyer-client relationship; you are advised to consult with a lawyer on any legal issue.”