Why you should plan for your death

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The facts of life say we’re all going to die one day. It’s probably not something you like to think about, but you can make your passing much easier on your loved ones, and avoid discomfort and disputes. If you make a plan now for your assets and finances, you can make sure everyone knows precisely what you want to happen.

Writing up your will is the first step, and it’s a good idea to consult a lawyer who specialises in estate planning, especially if you have a lot of assets you’d like to split between multiple people. Once it’s done, store it somewhere safe, and make sure you tell your executor in writing where it is – or you may as well not have written it.

Another asset you’ll need to think about is your super. Most super funds will let you make a binding nomination, specifying who you want the balance of your super to be paid to after you die. You can nominate exactly who receives what – such as your spouse, children, or a person financially dependent on you. You will need to update this every three years, and your super fund should send you a letter to remind you.

It’s essential you discuss all of this with your family. Set aside some time to go through what you wish to happen when you die, and the plans you have made. It might be a bit uncomfortable, but it’s worth it. You might not think that your family could be driven apart in disputes over what you have left behind, but the death of a loved one is a painful and emotional time. It’s easy for rifts to form in even the most loving families if you haven’t left behind clear plans about the distribution of your assets.

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