Is your ‘house in order’? LAW CORNER

2016-11-02 06:05

THE famous saying of Benjamin Franklin, which states, “but in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes” is possibly a compelling reason to get your house in order.

How do you set about ensuring that you have organised your affairs effectively?

First of all, it is important to ensure you have a will and that your will is up to date and correctly reflects what you want it to say.

Your circumstances change continually and it is wise to review your will regularly to ensure that it has kept up with the changes in your circumstances.

It is also relevant to consider whether your circumstances justify giving a third party your power of attorney. The motivation behind this is to ensure that should the untoward happen, such as you having a fall and becoming physically incapacitated, someone is able to take care of your affairs on your behalf, even if this is only on a temporary basis.

Other factors, which assist you in organising your affairs are:

Keeping your original policy documents in a safe place.

Keeping a record of your bank accounts and their numbers.

Keeping a record of any other accounts you may have (Telkom, cellphone, DStv, etc).

Keeping a record of your pension number and the contact details of your pension fund.

Keeping a record of your medical aid number and the contact details of your medical aid.

As between spouses it is also important to have access to funds upon the death of the first dying spouse, if possible. This is to ensure that the survivor is not left with financial worries while his or her widower’s or widow’s pension is processed, and while the executor collects cash into the estate of your deceased spouse. It is advisable for each spouse to have access to funds to enable you to live for approximately four months after the death of your spouse.

We have prepared a check list of documents, which it is worth collating to be prepared for any eventuality. If you would like this check list emailed to you, contact Mandi Kauffman at our offices on 033 845 9700 alternatively email me on mandik@jleslie.co.za to arrange this. Alternatively, if you would like me to assist you further by discussing your situation or updating your will or drawing up a power of attorney, Mandi will be happy to schedule a suitable appointment time for us to meet..

Being organised and having your affairs in order assists in reducing the stresses and traumas that inevitably occur upon the death of someone close to you.

It is never too late to organise yourself - start now.

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