Wills, probate & estates.

At Shelly Legal we understand that dealing with a deceased estate is one of the more difficult challenges in life.

With over a decade of experience in Estate law and litigation, we can help you arrange your medical and financial affairs in order to protect your loved ones. We can compassionately assist grieving family members understand the testamentary intentions of their deceased loved ones and help them obtain Letters of Administration and Probate Applications. We also represent both Executors and Beneficiaries in Estate litigation matters before the Supreme Court of New South Wales in Family Provision Claims.

Wills & Planning.

There comes a time every person needs to think about providing for their children or relatives. Whether you have recently separated or divorced, have just had a baby, want to leave your business or farm, selling up, retiring or relocating for health reasons, it is very important to have a succession plan in place. Having a Will prepared is the only way to ensure your loved ones benefit from your assets. For the most important decisions of your life, risking your wishes by using a Will kit purchased online or at the local Newsagency is unacceptable and leaves your loved ones and your Estate exposed.
 

Shelly Legal are happy assist you with your wills matter.

Preparation of your Will.

An assessment of assets.

Assessment of likely taxation.

Advice regarding possible claims against the estate by relatives or third parties.

The protection of assets.

Power of Attorney & Eduring Guardianship.

If you are concerned as to who may make decisions for you in circumstances where you are mentally or physically unable to do so, we regularly prepare Powers of Attorney and Appointment of Enduring Guardians.

Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is a legal document whereby one person grants another person the authority to make legal and financial decisions on their behalf. A Power of Attorney can be used in several ways – from having another take care of your affairs whilst travelling to times of extended illness.

An Enduring Power of Attorney takes this a step further, whereby the person nominated to manage the affairs (also called the “Donee”) may continue to manage the affairs once the person giving the power (also called the “Donor”) is found to have diminished mental capacity due to injury or illness. This arrangement can remain in place as long as the donor is still alive.

Powers of Attorney can be prepared in two ways – to come into effect immediately and to continue once the Principal suffers a loss of capacity; or to come into effect at a future time (such as the onset of mental incapacity). In order to sign a Power of Attorney, the Principal must be capable of understanding the nature of the document they are signing and its effect. It is therefore important in situations where a Power of Attorney must be appointed that it is done so in a timely manner.

Enduring Guardianship

An Appointment of Enduring Guardians is a legal document whereby you grant the right to make decisions in regard to your health and living arrangements to another person. This comes into effect only when you are deemed to have lost the ability to make decisions for yourself.

It gives your guardian the right to speak to health professionals about your medical situation and also to make the decisions necessary to carry out your wishes in regard to medical treatment options.

Contesting a Will.

If you’ve been left out of a Will, or have been unfairly treated in terms of the amount of your inheritance you may be able to make a claim against the estate.

Who can dispute a Will?

Pursuant to Section 54 of the Succession Act 2016(NSW), some of the people who may be entitled to claim include people who had a relationship with the Deceased such as:

  • Wife or Husband.
  • Defacto or Same-Sex Partners.
  • Former Spouse or Defacto Partner.
  • Child, Stepchild or Grandchild.
  • Parent of a Child of the Deceased.
  • Parent, Brother or Sister.
  • Someone who was financially dependent on the Deceased.
  • Carer of the Deceased.

This is a very general guide only so please contact us to discuss your particular circumstances.

Is there a time limit?

Yes, there is. You have only 12 months from the date of their death to make a claim. In certain circumstances, we might be able to obtain an extension of the time limit so please contact us to discuss your situation.

What if I don’t believe the Will was valid?

You can challenge a Will if you believe that the will is a forgery or if the person lacked the mental capacity to make a Will. You can also challenge a Will if you believe that undue influence was brought to bear upon the Deceased or if there was fraud involved.

How do I make a claim?

First, contact a lawyer, who can assess your claim and discuss the particular circumstances of your claim. If it’s worth continuing we will contact the executors and notify them of your claim. We will then gather evidence, prepare documents and make an offer to the executors. Many claims are settled through negotiation at this stage.

If the matter isn’t resolved then we can lodge documents with the court to initiate proceedings. We can still negotiate and in some cases, mediation will be required by the Court. Failing all else, we will proceed to a Court hearing wherein the evidence will be presented and the Judge will make a decision.

We can help at every stage of contesting or challenging a Will it’s important to have sound, experienced legal advice. We have the skills to negotiate on your behalf to avoid costly court fees, but if it comes down to court we also have the skills to fight on your behalf. If the matter proceeds to court, we have the experience & skills to fight on your behalf.

 

Probate & Estates.

At Shelly Legal we understand that dealing with a Deceased Estate is one of the more difficult challenges in life. From mountains of paper work to legal jargon and simmering family disputes, they’re the last things you want to deal with when you’re grieving the loss of someone important in your life.

  • Interpreting the Will of the Deceased in terms of Estate laws.
  • Advising Executors and Trustees in regardS to their duties and rights.
  • Informing Government bodies including Centrelink and Veterans Affairs.
  • Applying for Probate of the Will in the Supreme Court of New South Wales.
  • Dealing with intestacy (where there is no Will).
  • Applying for Letters of Administration (if the Will is deemed invalid or is absent).
  • Identifying Estate assets and liabilities.
  • Obtaining valuations of Estate property.
  • Collecting Estate financial assets including superannuation, bank funds, shares, outstanding loans, and insurance payouts.
  • Selling or transferring Estate property including Estate auctions.
  • Paying Estate debts including mortgages, funeral costs, and testamentary expenses.
  • Advising in regard to Family and Testamentary trusts.
  • Administering trust funds.
  • Distributing bequests and inheritances to beneficiaries.
  • Organising information for Estate tax returns.
  • Family mediation and negotiations.
  • Contesting wills and defending Estate litigation in the Supreme Court of New South Wales Wills.

Contact us about your specific legal needs.

Reach out to the team at our office and speak confidentially to one of our experienced solicitors.

(02) 8854 0267
enquiries@shellylegal.com.au