What does ‘dying intestate’ mean?

absence-of-planning dying intestateDying intestate doesn’t mean you are doing it tough in another State (and sadly, not alive inter-State – although it might be said that you are in ‘another state’; and without having left a valid Will!).

When you die without leaving a valid Will, your non-superannuation assets and estate will be managed by the Public Trustee (unless a member of your family successfully applies for Letters of Administration) – and must be distributed according to the laws of the land as expressed in the Succession Act.

How would dying intestate affect your family?

Consider the following outcome that arises from the administration of an estate under the Succession Act (laws of intestacy):

  1. Your former wife takes a share;
  2. your short-term de-facto gets little (if anything);
  3. your able children share equally with your disabled;
  4. the charity you favour gets nothing – and
  5. your superannuation could be distributed differently again from your non-superannuation assets.

Is that what you really want?!  (For more detail as to what that might mean, refer to the brochure published online by the Public Trustee of Queensland.)

How can these outcomes be avoided?

So you want to avoid dying intestate? With some careful thought and planning under the guidance of experienced professionals you can have an Estate Plan which by definition, will provide that your estate be disbursed to the right people, in the right amounts; and at the right time.

Your adviser at Continuum Financial Planners Pty Ltd has experience in wealth management and assisting you to prepare instructions to an estate planning lawyer to ensure that your family is adequately protected from any inequities that intestacy could mean for them. To experience the ContinuumFP advice process – ‘we listen, we understand; and we have solutions‘ which we deliver as personalised, professional wealth management advice – call our office (07-3421 3456), or use the Contact Us facility on our website.

(This article was originally published in September 2012: it has been modified and refreshed occasionally, most recently in August 2016.)