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The Professional Trustee Team

Necessity of Wills and Memorandom of Wishes

Now there's always at least 3 sides to a story but if the article in the New Zealand Herald is anything to go by, it would appear a family home and its contents was sold without potential beneficiaries being told.  The facts as reported are something like this:  

  • Mrs Haworth gives the Public Trust an enduring Power of Attorney in 2010.  this means the Public Trust are put in charge of all her affairs.
  • Mrs Haworth moves into a rest home and a couple of years later, the Public Trust make a decision to sell the family home.
  • The family beneficiaries being Mrs Haworth's daughters were not told the home had been placed on the market for sale.
  • The daughters have yet to be informed by the Public Trust of the sale price of the home and the distribution of those proceeds.

What does the above story teach us?  Easy Peasey.  Ensure you personally take steps to let others know what you want to happen with your assets and the assets that may be in your Trust.  Do this via your Will and a Memorandum of Wishes.  Put these documents in place – NOW.  Don't leave what happens to others.  If you do that, you could well end up not having your wishes followed and hurting those you love and leave behind.

If you need help with these matters, please contact Trustee Services Partner, Janet Xuccoa by calling (09) 522 7955 or emailing me at [email protected],  Also I have just released "Family Trusts 101" Revised 2012 edition with the lasted information on gifting order it today.

The Professional Trustee Team
© Gilligan Rowe & Associates LP

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Disclaimer: This article is intended to provide only a summary of the issues associated with the topics covered. It does not purport to be comprehensive nor to provide specific advice. No person should act in reliance on any statement contained within this article without first obtaining specific professional advice. If you require any further information or advice on any matter covered within this article, please contact the author.
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