Wills & Succession Planning

Samford Family Law are able to help you with considering all of the legal aspects of your succession planning (also known as estate planning) to help protect your family’s future, ensure your wishes are set out, and reduce the stress and hassle for your loved ones.

We help you think about all of the necessary factors, so that you are in the best position to make a valid and legally binding Will, Enduring Power of Attorney or Advance Health Directive.

In our years of experience and work with grieving and stressed families, we cannot stress enough that drafting a Will and planning for illness and incapacity is a gift that you give to your loved ones.


Frequently Asked Questions:

What is Succession Planning?

Succession planning is an important part of protecting your family’s future. Careful planning can reduce stress and hardship for your loved ones when you pass away. Succession planning involves considering all of the aspects of the various sucession planning documents, as well as:

  • Considering if you have a business or Trust: does the constitution or Trust Deed appropriately deal with any officeholdings you have and who you want to take over in the event you pass away.
  • Considering a superannuation nomination.
  • Considering your financial position and plans (noting that we can’t give this advice, but can provide referrals to financial planners if you need this).

What is the process for doing a Will or other succession planning document?

Our aim is to ensure that making your Will is a simple and stress-free process.

Generally, we will meet face-to-face or have an online appointment to discuss what you want to achieve. We will discuss the terms with you and answer any questions that you may have.

From there, we will then prepare your Will, and provide you with a draft for your review. Once you are satisfied with your Will, we will meet in person and sign the document.

What is a Will?

A Will is a legal document that sets out:

  • Who will look after the administration of your estate after you pass away.
  • Any particular funeral arrangements you would like.
  • How your property is distributed after you pass away.
  • If you have children under the age of 18 when you pass away, who will be their guardians.

Why should I make a Will?

If you pass away without a Will:

  • Your Estate may not be distributed according to your wishes. Without a Will, how your Estate is distributed is dictated by legislation.
  • You won’t have appointed an executor. This means a family member or friend may need to apply to the Court to be allowed to administer your estate, or the Public Trustee may step in and charge fees for doing so, leaving less property for your loved ones. It also means that the person looking after your Estate may not be the person you would have wanted to look after it.

Drafting a Will is a simple process that does not take very much time at all. We pride ourselves on helping make the process easy, smooth and still ensuring that you’ve considered all required aspects.

What is an Enduring Power of Attorney?

An Enduring Power of Attorney is a document that sets out:

  • Who you appoint to make decisions on your behalf while you are alive.
  • Whether your attorney has power to make financial decisions.
  • Whether your attorney has power to make personal or health decisions
  • Allows you to give views/wishes or instructions to your attorney. However these sections are optional, so you don’t need to include these things unless you have particular views/wishes or instructions.
  • If you want your attorney to notify someone or multiple people when exercising their powers, who they are to notify, about what, and in what circumstances.

Do I need an Enduring Power of Attorney?

An Enduring Power of Attorney ensures that the person you want to be making the decisions has the power to do so, should you become incapable of making those decisions for yourself.

If you do not have an Enduring Power of Attorney, your friends or family may need to make an application to QCAT to get the power to make personal or financial decisions for you.

What is an Advance Health Directive?

An Advance Health Directive is a document that:

  • Comes into effect in specific circumstances that can broadly be described as when you are nearing or at the end of your life (e.g. end stages of cancer).
  • Allows you to give legal directions to your doctor about your healthcare in circumstances when you may be unable to give these directions yourself.
  • Most notably, the Advance Health Directive allows you to nominate whether or not you would like to receive life-sustaining treatment in certain circumstances.

You may have heard of a ‘do-not-resuscitate’ or a ‘DNR’ – the Advance Health Directive is the Queensland version of this document.

Do I need an Advance Health Directive?

The purpose of an Advance Health Directive is to decide in advance about health treatment to ensure that the right decision for you is made. If you have particular views or wishes about what health treatment you do or do not want, then you should consider creating an Advance Health Directive.

It is often a document of great support to your loved ones, as they can be sure about what you wanted to happen when you are unable to communicate this yourself.