“The festive season and the holiday is behind us and for most of us this means getting back to business – not only in terms of work but also in ensuring that policies are updated, finances are streamlined, and the Will is reviewed.” This says Lucas Kotze, Head of FNB Fiduciary.
There is no better time than now, before the daily grind grips everyone again – to take stock of what is most important and ensuring that your family is protected. Start by getting a valid and up-to-date Will which allows you to put your wishes in writing for the distribution of your assets, and nominate guardians for your children. Ensure that your biggest wish – that your family is given what they deserve – is secured.
“An alarming number of Namibians pass away every year without a valid Will in place, which is probably the most important document you will ever sign. Without it, your estate will be distributed in terms of the law of intestate succession. This may include beneficiaries whom you may not have wished to benefit, or may exclude persons whom you would have preferred to benefit. There is no better time than now to update or get a valid Will in place,” says Lucas.
”Make sure that you have all your i’s dotted and t’s crossed when drafting a Will. There are a couple of basic principles that if adhered to, will ensure that your Will adequately caters for your needs.” continues Kotze.
Consider the following:
Keep it simple
It is best to have an uncomplicated Will that makes provision for unforeseen events and still complies with the legal requirements of a properly drafted document. When preparing your Will, you need to consider what will happen if one of your beneficiaries die before you. The best way to plan for this is to name a substitute beneficiary for each of your beneficiaries or to have a general substitution clause that will make provision for this. You should preferably not instruct your executor to sell your assets at death. If you do instruct the executor accordingly, he/she is compelled to sell the assets even if an heir would like to retain the assets.
You should review your Will whenever there has been a change in your status or circumstances, or those of your beneficiaries’ lives such as marriage, divorce, birth of a child, or changes in your financial situation. Another good time to review your Will would be after any changes in legislation which could affect your estate plan.