Article Written by Ian Kilbride.
I was shocked and saddened recently when told that one of our former Wealth Specialists had died at the young age of 30. It was a sobering reminder of one’s mortality. Although our former colleague had left to pursue his own business interests, he had the presence of mind to keep his last Will and testament with Appleton – The Fiduciary Specialists. Upon hearing of the death of our former colleague, I asked the Appleton Managing Director, Tim Hughes, to personally oversee the administration of the Estate.
Upon reviewing the Will, a few important things emerged. Firstly, although his personal circumstances had changed significantly over the past couple of years, our former colleague had not changed his Will to reflect these changes and changes to his wishes. So, while the Will is entirely valid and executable, and Appleton will administer his Estate with its customary care and efficiency, it is unfortunate to know that the legacy that he built up will not benefit those closest to him.
The second concern is that our former colleague had entered into a business relationship with a partner which adds further complications to the Estate as there is no ‘buy-sell’ agreement between the two shareholders. Fortunately, Appleton has many years of experience in dealing with business matters and Estate complexity, so I have every confidence we will be able to reconcile and iron out any crinkles this may throw up.
But if there is a plus side to this sad state of affairs, then it is the fact that as a good financial planner, our late colleague took out an Estate Preservation Plan, that will provide a cash payment to his immediate family and then take care of any Estate administration and ancillary costs such as Master’s fees.
In addition to extending our heartfelt condolences to his family and the care Appleton will commit to the administration of our former colleague’s estate, there are a number of important lessons we all need to take from this tragedy. Not least of these is to conduct thorough financial and estate planning with a professional advisor, review your Will regularly and ensure that you are cared for by the best in the fiduciary services industry.