Checklist: Assess your wealth succession risk level

Disclaimer

This checklist is provided for information and convenience only. While we make an effort to ensure the information provided is informative and useful, it does not take the place of professional legal, financial or medical advice.


You may be wondering if you require a will or whether a basic will is sufficient to cover your estate planning objectives and current situation. In order for you to better understand your wealth succession risk level, please tick where appropriate if any of the following situations apply to you.


Checklist

    If I have no will,
  • I have no will
  • I do not know who I could name to handle my estate and property affairs after I am gone
  • I need to draw up and have a ready file listing details of my assets and liabilities

  • If I have an existing will,
  • I am no longer in touch with the appointed executor
  • I need to pass my will to someone for safekeeping
  • I am no longer in touch with the appointed guardian
  • I need to revise the listing details of my assets and liabilities
  • I need to change the person handling my estate and property affairs after I am gone

  • If I have children and other dependants,
  • I have dependants, e.g. parents or parents-in-law whom I maintain
  • I have minor children
  • I have a new born in the family
  • I named my young children as beneficiaries to my insurance policies
  • I have a child with special needs
  • There is strong sibling rivalry among my children

  • If I have business, investments or high-risk profession,
  • My spouse is unfamiliar with business/financial matters
  • I engage in active management of investments or trade in a portfolio of stocks
  • I have foreign assets that have not been addressed in my estate plans
  • I work well with my business partners but their heirs may be a problem
  • I am a businessman and I am exposed to business risks and liabilities
  • I am a professional person and carry out professional services to my clients
  • My job is high risk
  • I have properties and business interests that can provide for multi-generations or maintained as long-term resources
  • I am concerned that my business becomes fragmented if I divide it among my children

  • If I have other considerations,
  • I wish to give a legacy to a charity but am not sure how this could be achieved
  • I am single or we wish to be financially independent of our children
  • My marital status has changed recently
  • I am separated from my spouse
  • My family would need ready funds while waiting for grant of probate
  • I have assets in joint names or as tenants-in-common and need to understand the legal implications of such holdings
  • I am domiciled outside Singapore
  • I have family members who are permanent residents or citizens of another jurisdiction
  • I have family members who are married to foreigners
  • I am a Muslim or from a religious faith where my estate has to be divided in a certain manner
  • The management of my property and affairs will be disrupted if I fall into mental incapacity
  • I am at high risk of sudden health or mental conditions

Total Score = 2


What's your score and where you stand?

Score Risk Level Advice
0-6 Low Risk If you already have an existing will held in proper custody, it is recommended to review your will periodically with your professional estate planner. If you have an existing will, it appears that you still have some concerns on whether it is adequate or sufficiently comprehensive to cover your estate planning objectives. It is recommended to review your will periodically with your professional estate planner.
7-15 Moderate Risk It appears your will if you have one, is inadequate and not sufficiently comprehensive to cover your estate planning objectives. This could be redressed with a discussion with your professional estate planner to help you identify and cover the gaps by drawing up a fresh will or setting up trusts.
15 and above Risky to High Risk Your estate affairs may be fraught with delays and disputes among your family members. The distribution outcome could be unsatisfactory or unreasonable as regards certain beneficiaries or some people excluded. There are likely to be higher costs, leakages and legal expenses in sorting out the estate. There is urgent need to sort out your estate affairs and you should meet up with your professional estate planner as soon as possible.

About the Author

Timeliss Tiffany

Sharing experiences, stories and lessons about life-planning and beyond


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