Succession & Elder Law
Our Succession & Elder Law Team offers a unique set of services to our clients. We understand that reliable estate planning and management services are critical to ensure a smooth and effective transfer of assets and to safeguard your family’s financial security and to ensure your testamentary wishes are implemented.
Aitken Partners has one of the premier Wills, Estates & Succession practices in Victoria with two Accredited Specialists and more than nine decades experience.
Our knowledge is unrivalled through working on thousands of matters for leading Australian and Victorian companies and businesses, charities, private companies, family businesses, individuals, local, federal and state government, trustee companies and quasi-government organisations.
We have the capacity to provide advice from a ‘simple Will’ to more complex issues around Wills, Estates & Succession. Added to this is the power of the Aitken LegalVault which gives our clients online read only access to the documents that we hold.
Meet our Succession & Elder Law Team
Kathy Wilson, Principal
Accredited Specialist in Wills & Estates
Robert Davey, Consultant
Lizia Lim, Senior Associate
Accredited Specialist in Wills & Estates
Max Ezerins, Associate
Rachael Hocking, Associate
Our Estates Litigation team is rated First Tier by Doyles Guide
Wills, Trusts, Estates
- Advising on all aspects of trusts and wills, including the preparation of wills, trusts and other related documentation;
- Advising on all matters of estates, including estate planning and dispute resolution;
- Administering trusts and estates;
- Advising trustees and beneficiaries on their rights and obligations;
- Advising on the establishment of trusts and preparing trust deeds and variations;
- Advising on the vesting and splitting of trusts and change of trustees; and
- Preparing and advising on charitable trusts.
- Obtaining probate (both general and limited grants) in contested and difficult estates;
- Providing advice on challenges to wills; and
- Acting in litigation in relation to trusts and estates.
- Advising on succession planning, including farming and pastoral enterprises, and structuring succession planning solutions and Power of Attorney and Guardianship;
- Preparing variations to business structures; and
- Dispute resolution in estate, trust, commercial, personal injuries litigation and guardianship and disability issues, including mediation.
Guardianship and Administration
- Providing advice in relation to guardianship and financial administration
- Representing clients at VCAT in relation to guardianship and administration disputes
Wills can only be made and executed in the usual manner where the Willmaker is over the age of 18 and has the necessary testamentary capacity.
However most people are unaware that it is also possible for a child under 18 or an adult lacking capacity to have a Will made on their behalf, to enable their estate to be dealt with in accordance with their likely wishes. This is called a “Statutory Will” or a “Court Authorised Will” and may only be made after a successful application to the Court.
Some examples of where it is necessary or desirable for Wills to be made by the Court on behalf of minors or people who lack capacity are as follows:
- Where a child’s parents are separated and the child is estranged from one parent (under an intestacy the child’s estate will be divided equally between both parents);
- Where a person’s serious injury or likely death is caused by the actions of a family member, who would otherwise inherit the estate under the existing Will or under an intestacy;
- Where a person’s Will needs to be updated, but they are unable to do so due to dementia or something similar.
Before authorising a Statutory Will, the Court must be satisfied that:
- The person lacks testamentary capacity;
- The proposed will reflects what the intentions of the person would be likely to be, or what the intentions of the person might reasonably be expected to be, if the person had testamentary capacity; and
- It is reasonable to make the proposed Will.
Our specialist Wills & Estate team at Aitken Partners are able to assist you in making successful Court applications for Statutory Wills, to ensure that the assets of your loved one will be distributed in accordance with their likely wishes.