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Why every young adult needs a will (and how parents can help)

06/04/2017 by Pascoe Partners Accountants

Why every young adult needs a will (and how parents can help)

For young adults, whose lives are yet to be complicated by marriage and kids, creating a will isn’t exactly at the top of their priorities list. Not only do they feel ten foot tall and bulletproof, they also don’t believe they have anything worth leaving to someone else.

Unfortunately, the combination of over-confidence and inexperience can make young adults quite vulnerable. And while they may not exactly be swimming in a pool full of cash at their million-dollar mansion, they may still have a sizable estate.

One they may not want to leave to just anyone.

Why a will is important

We heard of one young woman who was killed in a car accident. She received a substantial insurance payout, which was split between her parents according to intestacy rules because she didn’t have a will in place.

So what was the problem? Well, this young woman had been estranged from her father since she was four years old. Her mother tried to challenge the position in court, but the Court could only follow the rules, giving the estranged father an equal share of the multi-million-dollar payout.

Every young adult needs a will

Of course, most young adults would be happy to leave their estate to their parents. For that to happen they’d need only a simple will, with the parents acting as the executors. They may also want to leave something to their siblings.

(Superannuation entitlements are usually governed by a nomination that’s completed when first joining the fund, and can be changed at any time.)

Modern family arrangements (e.g. blended families) can lead to complications. However, as most young adults don’t have anyone relying on them financially, it would be difficult for a family member to challenge the will simply because they weren’t named as a beneficiary.

What you can do as a parent

If your children are now young adults, you should talk to them about making a will. Of course, as we said it won’t exactly be at the top of their priorities list. So why not make an appointment with us to talk about it and bring them along? We’ll explain the key elements of a will, and the benefits of having one.

And if they’re interested in making one, we can ask one of the legal firms we have a relationship with to prepare a simple will at a reasonable cost.

As a parent, you want your children to be prepared for the future. And having them create a will should be part of that preparation.