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Guardianship

Discussion in 'Estate Planning' started by Jacque, 15th Nov, 2006.

  1. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    Was investigating new wills recently and getting a POA for an elderly relative, when a colleague mentioned the importance of getting guardianship organised. I was in a bit of a hurry and assumed he meant ensuring that we put in our will our selected guardians (for our children) in case of death of both my spouse and myself......

    Unless he meant something else? One doesn't like to always assume and then find out later that the meaning was misconstrued. Anyone have any ideas about other types of guardianship when it comes to wills?
     
  2. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    He may have been referring to "enduring guardian" for your elderly relative.

    That's what in NSW is generally known as an enduring power of attorney covering health matters.

    In NSW you use an enduring PoA for financial matters and appoint an enduring guardian to make health related decisions when you lose capacity.

    check it out further here: The Guardianship Tribunal - Plan for your Future

    Having a valid and up to date will, enduring power of attorney and enduring guardian (or an attorney which covers both health and financial matters) is a crucial part of your asset protection and estate planning strategy.

    Note also that in some states (certainly in Qld) there's an ability to make an "Advance Health Directive" which gives you some ability to direct today what health procedures you will/will not accept being applied to you when you lose capacity to make that clear yourself.

    It's human nature to put this unpleasant stuff off, but very important to get it all stitched up.

    Cheers
    N.

    Cheers
    N.
     
  3. Balboa

    Balboa Member

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    Another point to note--re enduring P.O.A-- which becomes apparent particularly if you and spouse are quite old--. If you grant an E.P.O to each other it is a good idea to name a younger,trusted relative as a joint attorney in each doc.-- If you were both quite old when one or the other needed to utilise the other's P.o.A the government could step in and decide that the partner of the one who needed the guardianship was also incapable of acting to manage affairs and then the Gov could take over-- You would not want the Gaurdianship Board to manage your affairs with their costs to be taken off the top. You can grant a P.OA to each other by just getting a Form off the web but to arrange an Enduring P.O.A you need a solicitor to also sign to witness that you have had explained and understood the E.P.O provisions.--
     
  4. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    You raise a good point Balboa...the choice of who to appoint as your enduring attorney etc is a very difficult one.

    What you can do is appoint alternates so that if say your spouse can't act (say you're both injured in the same accident) then the other attorneys can act.

    Which raises another point. Working late listening to the radio last night I heard about 5 ads over the course of a couple of hours for a "will kit" which you can get from the newsagent. The ad of course extols the virtues and simplicity of the product.

    In my opinion, that might be okay for joe/josephine average with bugger all assests/investments who really don't care about making proper provision for their family but it is grossly inadequate for investors and anyone else who really does care. Big call, but I reckon if you have kids and you don't have a testamentary trust will then you're potentially doing them and your spouse a huge disservice.

    Stepping off soapbox now...:p

    Cheers
    N.
     
  5. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    Thanks peoples for all responses. Very eye opening indeed.
    We are getting onto our wills this month.