Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Dying without a Will (Part 2) - The Problems

Dying without a will may create a lot of problem, resulting in disputes and unhappiness in the family. Is it really that bad? Perhaps I can shed some light for you here.

1) Distribution of assets, not to deceased's intention - Eg, Mr Tan have a wife and 2 children. Nothing will be given to his parents for their old age.
2) Disagreement on who should run the estate - Family members have to apply to court for this rights. It can be lenghty process especially when they disagree on the rights.
3) Administrative Bond required by the administrator.(The bond is the guarantee required by court to guard against fraudulent administration of the estate)
4) Requirement for sureties as a guard against administrator disappearance. Such sureties must also own assets at least equal to the gross value of the deceased's estate. Not easy to find such sureties.
5) Administrator cannot transact the affairs of the estate until "Letter of Administration" is extracted from the courts. (Eg, monies from bank account for immediate family needs etc)
6) Double Estate Duties especially on common disasters. Eg Husband and wife die together. The older one will deems to die early and asset passed to the younger one. Subsequently, the asset are passed down again. Estate passed down 2 times and hence double estate duties.
7) Certain asset hard to split. Eg Properties and business assets. Can be problematic especially if a beneficiary could be still staying in it and the other beneficiary insist on selling.

I had kept the above very brief. It shall only be for your 1st level info.

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