A will is a legal document that declares what you would like to
happen with your money, belongings, and other assets (your estate)
when you pass away.
Your will identifies who you elect to give your estate to (your
beneficiaries), and who you elect to administer your estate (your
executor) when you pass away.
What does a will allow you to do?
Name one (1) or more guardians for your children
Establish a trust to provide for your children, or a person
with a disability
Preserve your assets
Give money to charity and philanthropic organisations such as
'MND & Me'
Why do you need a will?
You need a plan, and having a valid will is the only way to
ensure that your estate goes to your family or friends of your
choice. Having a valid and up to date will can help reduce stress
for your family and friends, limit the costs to
the administrator your estate and lessen the possibility for
potential dispute over your estate.
What happens if you do not have a will?
If you pass away without a valid will you pass away
'intestate'. This means:
Your assets will be distributed according to the laws of
intestacy, as provided for in Part 3 of the Succession Act 1981
There is no guarantee that your assets will be distributed as
you had anticipated
Your family and friends may not be provided for as you had
It may take more time and money to finalise your estate
Who can make a will?
To make a valid will you must be; at least 18 years of age, and
of sound mind, memory and understanding.
To be valid, your will is required to meet the following
Be in writing; and
Be signed by you in front of two witnesses. Both must be; over
the age of 18 years, cannot be visually impaired, and should not be
included in said will.
The Supreme Court of Queensland can approve a will being made on
behalf of someone who cannot legally prepare a will for
When/why do you need to update your will?
You can review your will as often as you like. At a minimum, you
should aim to review your will at least every three (3) to five (5)
years to ensure it still reflects your wishes and
You may need to update your will if the following occur:
You get married
You start a de facto relationship
You start a registered relationship
You get divorced, or your marriage is annulled
You end a de facto relationship
You end a registered relationship, or it is void
Your children, grandchildren, or any other persons you want to
include as beneficiaries in your will are born
Your assets or financial circumstances change
Any person named as a beneficiary in your will passes away
Any person named as an executor, trustee, or guardian in your
will passes away or becomes unable or unwilling to act due to age,
ill-health or any other reasons
You wish to change your beneficiaries, executors, trustees or
guardians named in your will
You are affected by a natural disaster
You make a valid arrangement with the trustee of your
superannuation fund to pay the proceeds of your superannuation into
If you get married or start a registered relationship, your will
is officially cancelled by the marriage or registered relationship
– it takes a gift to your spouse or registered partner, or
nominates them as an executor, trustee or guardian unless it was
made with marriage or a registered relationship in mind.
Divorce does not officially cancel your will. Nonetheless it
cancels any provision made in favour of your former spouse, as well
as any appointment of that former spouse as an executor, trustee or
Ending your registered relationship or finding that your
registered relationship is void does not officially cancel your
will. However it does cancel any provision made in the will in
favour of your former registered partner, as well as any
appointment of that former spouse as an executor, trustee or
How do you get help to make your will?
The commercial team at Kaden Boriss Legal is able to assist
clients in drawing wills and testamentary trusts.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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Sect.117 can deal with false statements and knowingly making false allegations of violence could justify a costs order.
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