Australian Citizen resident in China leaves a “note” for mum

Update! This case was successfully appealed in June 2017.  Read my article on the appeal here. Documenting your wishes is simple in theory, but quite a different story in real world.  The Supreme Court of Victoria had quite the job recently in  deciphering whether a note a man left behind was considered to be his “Will” and…

Worldy Wisdom: Why a pro forma will still ends up in Court

I’m always curious as to any judgement dealing with will kits or proforma wills.  I have every suspicion we will see more of these as the years go on. Recently the Court had to determine what a testator meant in the matter of Rhodes v Rhodes (as Executor of the Estate of Cecil Ronald Rhodes) & Ors…

Computer Will upheld

In the Estate of Robin Michael (Deceased) [2016] SASC 164, the Supreme Court of South Australia held that a computer document was to be admitted to probate as the last will and testatment of the deceased. The Court itemised the following main issues to be determined were: Was the will on the deceased’s hard drive of…

Child of defacto spouse = step-child in family provision claim

In today’s society, it’s not uncommon for someone to refer to their defacto partner’s child as their own.  They are often just as close to them, if not even closer, than their own, biological children. The Supreme Court of Victoria today handed down a decision finding that a child of a defacto spouse was a step-child of the deceased…

Court Made Will to protect assets from passing to children until 25 years

Court-made will to protect assets from passing to children until 25 years. Being a fairly new and novel area of the succession practice space, I’m always curious and therefore read the cases that hit my news feed on court-made wills and the reason behind them. The legislation sets out a clear formula for determining whether…

A Research Study – “Having the last word: Will making and Contestation in Australia”

I had the great pleasure of reading a very interesting report entitled “Having the last word: Will Making and Contestation in Australia”.

For those that want to skip to the good bits, you can access the report here.

In summary, the study was conducted over 4 years and is the bouncing baby booklet of the Public Trustees and the University of Queensland under an Australian Research Council Linkage Grant.

Elder abuse – it even has a name

Elder Abuse is alive and well.. unfortunately. It has become such a problem it now has a name?  How did this happen?… That’s a rhetorical question. I’ve been reading more and more of Actor Mickey Rooney’s struggle and despite his original wealth and celebrity status, he was still just a gentleman, taken advantage of by…

Aged Care reforms, SMSF and Centrelink Schedules

With aged care reforms on their way, practitioners should be aware of the changes that result in considerations around affordability particularly for self-funded retirees or part-pensioners. As an SMSF trustee, there are some additional considerations that a trustee will need to consider. Check out a useful article by Anna Lawton, Senior Manager of Aged Care Services at Equity Trustees Limited via…