28 April 2016

Will to Live, Will to Die

Retirement seems to be all about the will to live a life. Somebody shared that people who retire early without any goals of what to do thereafter tends to die young.

Which leads me to a recent discovery about death. More specifically, a Will for death. I had a few realisations on this, which led me to several "Oh shit!" moments. And I thought I had all the bases covered. How wrong.

Not having a Will could ...

... cost you an extra $3,000 to get the necessary documents processed.

... take from 1 to 3 years, instead of just 1 year, before the assets/money can be available to my beneficiaries.

... result in the wrong people getting the money in the event of unexpected dual death of husband and wife, depending on the sequence of death. It seems that in the event that both die "simultaneously" (or could not be so discriminated), the younger person is deemed to have died later!

And here's a tricky problem with that Joint banking account. If the bank gets wind of one account holder's death first, the account gets locked up and remains stuck until the Probate thing is settled! My present plan of keeping half the income needs in a Joint account could go very wrong.

And with that, I just realised that wifey and kids would be in serious trouble if I 'kaput' first. If it takes a year to three before the money is released, how would they cope with the cash flow needs during that period? Something that needs some rejigging on where we keep that contingency sum and how much.

And where would you store a Will? My natural instinct was a Safe Deposit Box. Wrong! It seems that the content of a Safe Deposit Box cannot be released until a Probate is obtained. So that's a tricky chicken-and-egg problem. Keep at home? What if burnt or damaged!?

Intestate. Probate. Executor. I've been re-educated.

Tricky. Time to do something about that Will.

Now who wants to be my Executor? Sheesh.

p/s: I was introduced to the term "testarix". Sounds kinky no?

Mortality - are we well protected?


Mao Mao said...
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Mao Mao said...

I have whole life and term life insurance policies to reduce the trouble of a will and probate. Just have to complete the nomination forms and the respective insurance companies will wait for the nominees to collect their shares.

Lizardo said...

Mao Mao,

You might want to check what is the type of nomination scheme your insurance fall into. I was advised that one type of insurance nomination does not allow you to change, ever after.

Also, my impression is that even with a nomination, the probate is still needed before it can be released? Or does it just require a death certificate?

Would you not have other assets that need to be "willed" - e.g. bank accounts, other forms of investments?