Some believe Shakespeare to have been a madman. Whether that is true or not, we cannot say, but we believe that he had no contemporary who wrote quite as much (or as well) about death and its implications. As certain as the fates of his protagonists and antagonists were, we don’t think leaving things up to fate is the best way to go about life, either for you or those you leave behind.

To be(queath) or not to be(queath), that is the question.

Many people go their whole lives without drawing up a will. Their assets in their estate remain attached to their name until they have to be distributed. In legal terms, the distribution of estate property where no will is available is referred to as intestate succession. Here’s why we think it’s something to avoid:

  • The beneficiaries are confined to one’s closest relatives (regardless of the quality of relationship) and are predetermined by the Intestate Succession act.
  • No pre-legacies hold merit. Instead, all residual assets will form part of the total intestate estate.
  • The executor is nominated by the heirs, and disagreements may lead to delays in the execution of the estate.
  • There is no liquidity in the estate until the estate is resolved.
  • Minors are vulnerable as testamentary trusts will be managed by the Guardian’s Fund
  • It takes much longer to resolve than would be the case if there was a will.
  • The chances of family quarrels and disputes are high as some outside of the legal (intestate) heirs may lay a claim to part of the estate.
  • There are generally greater tax and administrative ramifications than in the case of a valid will.

Setting up a valid will is the only way to avoid the often disastrous consequences of intestate succession. Having a valid will allows the testator to leave their estate to whomever they want to and choose how the estate is distributed. They can provide additional security to their loved ones who are left behind and help them escape the time and monetary costs of settling the estate.

How do you draft a valid will?

Drafting a valid will is as simple as contacting CMM Attorneys to guide you through the process.

With our help, you can make sure that you leave your legacy to those who you want to leave it to, while providing them with some certainty and security despite their heartbreak at losing you. We help you structure your will in such a way that your loved ones can avoid any further distress and disruption to their lives in the worst-case scenario.

To answer the question, “To be(queath) or not to be(queath)”, we believe that bequeathing is the best route. Write your own ending and become the master of your own fate.

We look forward to helping you and those you love. Speak to us today to draft or amend your will as your situation may require.

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as legal or other professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your legal adviser for specific and detailed advice. Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)

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