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The primary purpose of having a valid will is so that the testator can have the benefit of prescribing the division of his assets to only the beneficiaries he/she desires. In this way, having the assets of the deceased in the wrong hands after his/her death is avoided.
There are many areas of a will that, when not written correctly, can be misinterpreted. The result is your estate is not administered or distributed according to your wishes. This article is the final part of a two-part series that addresses how to write a will in South Africa and, most importantly, what mistakes to avoid.
The most important thing to keep in mind when drafting a will is to make sure there is no room for uncertainty or ambiguity. This is to ensure that there is no confusion among heirs or beneficiaries regarding their inheritance which may result in a contested will.
While the subject of death is not usually something we like to focus on, it is however something that needs to be planned to to make things less difficult for our loved ones.
According to the Estate Duty Act, estate duty is charged on the dutiable value of a property. The rate in South Africa is currently 20% of the estates dutiable value.
The Administration of Estates Act 1965, outlines what must happen with an estate after a person’s death. There are certain steps that should be taken to ensure the process of settling an estate is legal.
The purpose of a Living Will is to guide your family and doctors when you are in an unrecoverable medical state and are no longer capable of making your own medical decisions because of this condition.
We all get caught up with the high demands of family life and work, so it is easy to forget about taking care of your estate and will.
However, this is arguably the most important thing to take care of while you are still alive.
Letters of wishes (sometimes referred to as a Memorandum of Wishes) are non-binding documents that provide guidance of the estate planning documents.
In South Africa, it is a well-known fact that more than 70% of the people do not have a will, or their will is out of date or no longer relevant.
Many people spend their lives building up assets, only to have the whole process undermined by neglecting to have a will, or having one that does not reflect their wishes when they are no longer around.
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