Estate Planning Essentials (By Mei Wu)
Estate planning is an important process that many people avoid. There are many reasons for avoidance, including these notions:
- The process is difficult
- It is unpleasant to talk about death
- Your spouse and children will just inherit what you own
- Estate planning is only for the wealthy
- It is too early to start planning your estate
- You still have plenty of time to write your will
However, what happens if you pass away unexpectedly? How do you know if your assets will be distributed according to your wishes? What if you are a small business client or currently have several tax structures in place?
Many seek off-the-shelf will kits as they are cost effective, but experts caution against them as many of these wills end up in litigation.
Extra care must be taken especially in relation to distribution of assets such as the superannuation fund assets, business assets or trust assets. These do not go through an individual’s will. Generally, in a trust, you need to refer to the trust structure and documents to determine who governs the trust once you have passed away.
In my experience, a good estate plan is a joint effort between accountant, financial planner (if you have one) and lawyer, because accountants can’t give legal advice and lawyers can’t give tax advice.
Therefore, if you require service in this area, knp has good relationships with legal practitioners that who specialise in this space. If you require your will to be reviewed as your circumstances have changed, feel free to contact your partner or manager representative at knp.
Technology Tips- Using Xero
Account watchlist (budget column) – You can now show a ’Budgets’ column in the account watchlist to track your spending against your Xero budget.
Budget Variance report and variance column – Xero has created a new Budget Variance report. They have added it as a common format of the ‘Profit and Loss report’ so you can access it with one click. You can also add variance columns to reports like the ‘Profit and Loss and Balance Sheet’.
Congratulations to Sean (our practice manager) and Emma, who recently welcomed their daughter Quinn.
Pups at work
Here at knp we’ve initiated ‘bring your dog to work’. We have been enjoying the many benefits of having dogs around the office such as relieving stress and creating positive interaction amongst the staff. Meet Archie and Mochi, our two most recent visitors who have enjoyed ‘working on-site’.
Newsletter - May 2022 Edition