A will is a legal document that sets out your wishes regarding the distribution of your property and assets upon your demise. A will does not have to be in any specific format but must be in writing and signed in front of two witnesses.
The person preparing the will is called a testator. The person(s) who will benefit from the will are called beneficiaries. A will should list the intended beneficiaries and set out clearly the assets to be distributed to each of them. Moreover, the testator will need to appoint executor(s) who will be in charge of administering and distributing the estate according to the will.
Any solely-owned assets can be included in a will. A jointly-owned asset cannot be included in a will as there is something called the rule of survivorship which states that a surviving joint owner gets full ownership of an asset when the joint owner passes on. For instance, where there is a joint bank account between husband and wife and one of them passes on, the remaining spouse will get 100% of the account.
In addition, CPF monies cannot be included in a will. Beneficiaries can only be nominated through a dedicated CPF nomination form.
In a situation where a person passes on without preparing a will, they are deemed to have died intestate. In such a situation, someone (usually a family member) has to apply to Court for a Letter of Administration to be appointed as the administrator and manage the estate of the deceased. The assets would then be distributed according to the Intestate Succession Act.
Though you do not need a lawyer to prepare a will, you need to ensure that your will is prepared in such a way that it is legal and enforceable. At Yeo Law, our lawyers have experience in all types of property, whether located in Singapore or overseas, and are familiar with different ways through which to bequeath them in the smoothest and most effective manner. They will help ensure that none of your assets are overlooked and that all gifts will be distributed to your loved ones in the manner of your choosing to give you the peace of mind that you deserve. Call us at 62203400 for an initial discussion.