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The Eleven Essential Estate Planning and Asset Protection Documents

ChangeGPS // Asset Protection, Estate Planning

Estate planning is a valuable service for your clients. It can also help you to grow your business by providing an extra stream of income. These documents cover off all the paperwork you need and, when you’re using LightYear Docs, creating them for yourself is as easy as keying in the relevant details.

Will with testamentary trust

A Will is the central document in any estate plan. It sets out how a client would like their assets to be distributed along with other important information such as who would take care of young children and any preferences for the funeral. You should advise your clients to keep up to date to take account of changing circumstances such as divorce, the birth of a child or the death of beneficiaries.

A testamentary trust only comes into effect after the death of your client. It isn’t compulsory, but it can provide extra reassurance by placing certain conditions on a bequest, such as stipulating that beneficiaries can only receive the assets bequeathed to them when they reach a certain age. It can also prevent family assets being split after a divorce or as a result of bankruptcy.

Enduring power of attorney

An enduring power of attorney authorises one or more people to make decisions about property or finances on behalf of your clients if they should become too ill or incapacitated to act for themselves. Your clients can specify the scope of the decision-making and, as an accountant, you can help them to decide how the document should be worded. This is a particularly important consideration for business owners.

Advance health directive

Sometimes called a Living Will, an advanced care directive formalises your client’s preferences for care or treatment they may need if they become ill or disabled, or as they age. This can incorporate choices relating to religious or cultural beliefs and instructions about end-of-life care, such as how long they’d like treatment to continue. This gives you client peace of mind as it relieves their loved ones of the burden of uncertainty.

Leading Member discretionary trustee company constitution

The Leading Member Discretionary Trust (LMDT) ensures your clients’ primary beneficiaries are lineal descendants. It lasts beyond the life of a Leading Member appointor and avoids the complications of an estate challenge following death, divorce, dementia or bankruptcy. If your client already has a company constitution, you need to ensure they are the shareholder by cancelling all other shares. You can then upgrade them by using the LMDT upgrade of a company constitution.

Leading Member discretionary trust deed

The trust deed sets out the rules for establishing and operating your client’s LMDT.

Leading Member SMSF special purpose company trustee constitution

The Leading Member special purpose SMSF company trustee is a reduced version of a standard company and does not pay dividends. Its sole purpose is to act as a corporate trustee of a Leading Member SMSF.

Leading Member SMSF deed

The SMSF Deed sets out the rules for establishing and operating your client’s SMFS.

Successor director resolutions

If your client is a director of a company, they can specify a successor director to take over the role and duties if your client dies or becomes incapacitated. This vital document ensures your client’s company can continue to operate. Their family will also retain control of their interests and continue to receive an income.

SMSF family allowance agreement

A family allowance agreement allows your clients to add to their legal financial dependents. This makes it possible for their super fund to pay a death benefit directly to someone who would otherwise have to go through the estate, and to pay an income stream or tax-free death benefit to someone who otherwise wouldn’t qualify. Typical examples of those who might qualify in all three cases are your clients’ grandchildren and daughter- or son-in-law.

SMSF dependency declaration

The Dependence Declaration follows on from the Family Allowance Agreement. It states the names of the people your client would like to include as dependents and the reason why they qualify – for example, in the case of a grandchild, it might be because your client is paying their school fees.

SMSF Will

An SMSF Will is a set of directions from your client to the trustee. Unless your client specifically requests that the SMSF is included in the estate it will be treated separately. This is generally preferred as, in this case, the contents can’t be contested.

See how to create these documents for yourself

ChangeGPS and LightYear Docs can take the hard work out of estate planning and make it easy to create all of these essential documents. Find out more by contacting us now to book a no-obligation free consultation. We’ll be happy to show you how.



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