Tag Archives: rockwills wills and trusts

In The Name of My Father’s Estate (Episode 7)

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Rockwills - wills and trusts - ipoh estate planningBy Peter Lee

With the consensus of all the beneficiaries on the appointment of Administrators and Guarantors, Dave said to every member of the Lee family in the meeting  “Okay, the first thing we need to do is to gather the entire assets in the estate of Lee Sr.  Since John, Michelle and Connie are appointed as Administrators of the estate, they have to help me list down all these assets in the estate for the application of Letter of Administration (L.A.).” Dave further explained “let’s start off with the bank accounts. I presume some of the bank accounts either in sole or joint names like Fixed Deposits, Current and Savings accounts are frozen. Therefore, please list down the name of the bank, branch, bank account number and amount. Please also check whether there are any overseas bank accounts.” Connie then asked Dave “How do you deal with those joint accounts that are frozen which I am entitled to half of the money?” Dave replied, “Once the Administrators receive all the money from this account, then they have to give half the money in this account to you but the other half that belongs to Lee Sr. will be distributed according to the Malaysian Distribution Act.” Connie then said “I thought since I am the joint holder I will automatically receive all the money.” “No, that’s not the case, “replied Dave and added, “By the way, I have to highlight to you all that the bank can freeze joint accounts even if there is a “joint survivorship clause”. This is irrespective whether the signing of accounts is either one or both. So, please check again whether there are any of such accounts.”

Then John said “Dave, what if all the money in all the joint accounts with the deceased is returned to the surviving joint account holder?” “Well, this can be arranged if all the beneficiaries consent to it in writing but this will not be in accordance with the Distribution Act and by doing so it’s going to look like following the Distribution Act on a selective basis. But having said that, you would still have to give me details of all these joint accounts” replied Dave. Michelle then asked “How are we going to unlock the overseas bank accounts say maybe in Singapore, Australia and U.K.?” “I feel that in this case, when applying for L.A. in Malaysia, we would also have to apply for L.A. simultaneously in countries where the assets are affected and for this I would have to contact lawyers from these countries to deal with the application,” replied Dave. “Now, I would like to move to the next item which is the investments in movable assets such as unit trusts or mutual funds and shares in local and foreign stock exchanges. I need to have the name of the unit trust or mutual fund companies and the amount that Lee Sr. had invested. This includes sole or joint names. I think all the required information can be ascertained from the statements received from these companies. When it comes to listed shares in our local stock market, all that is required will be the details of the CDS account. But as for shares held overseas, then it all depends on the L.A. application in that particular country. It is important to check whether there are any foreign shares held by Lee Sr. still in scrips. If there are, then these scrips must be handed back to the registrar of these companies so that they can be deposited into a trading account where the Administrator can claim from there later on.”

To be continued…

Peter Lee is an Associate Estate Planning Practitioner (Wills & Trust) with Rockwills International Group. He is also an Islamic Estate Planner providing Wills & Trust services for Muslims. He is based in Ipoh and can be reached at: 012‑5078825/ 05‑2554853 or excelsecms@gmail.com. Website: http://www.wills-trust.com.my.

In The Name of My Father’s Estate (Episode 6)

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Rockwills - wills and trusts - ipoh estate planningBy Peter Lee

After the meeting with Connie, Dave phoned John and said, “I have met up with Connie and she wants to be one of the Administrators in your father’s estate. John’s response was “I think my family is not going to be happy with this!” Dave then said, “I understand your family’s position but based on the fact that she and her children are entitled to a portion of your father’s estate, I think your family would have to consent to her appointment. Otherwise, she would most likely disagree with the appointment of you and your sister, Michelle to be the administrators.” John then asked, “do we have another choice or can we maybe offer her something attractive so that she will back off?” Dave replied, “John, by the looks of it, she is eager to claim her own family’s entitlement to your father’s entire estate in which the assets and value needs to be ascertained with the co-operation of all family members. So, I suggest that you have a word with your family because the appointment of Administrator is crucial to kick start the application for Letter of Administration (L.A.). Futhermore, I need to highlight that once this is done, your family and your father’s second family would have to list down all of his assets and their value which must be attached to the application for L.A. This can be a tedious process.” “Okay! I will speak to my family,” said John.

After two days, John contacted Dave and said “Whew ! It was not easy  explaining to my mum and siblings for the last two days but I think we have no choice but to consent to the appointment of Connie as the joint Administrator. The other thing is, my family would like to have a meeting with Connie and her children.” Dave replied “This is what I am going to suggest next because I have to brief everyone before I start applying for the L.A.” After a week, the meeting of all family members with Dave took place in Dave’s office. When John, his mum and siblings stepped into the meeting room, Connie and her three children were already waiting with Dave. Dave stood up and said, “come, everyone please sit down.” When everyone sat down  both sides of the family looked at each other in silence, unsure whether to greet one another. Dave stepped in and introduced both sides of the family to each other. Thereafter, he said “now I have more or less explained briefly to all the procedure for applying for the L.A. in our previous meeting. So, the first thing I need is the consensus of everyone here that the Administrators of Lee senior’s estate will be John, Michelle and Connie before I start my paper work.” After a few minutes of silence everyone agreed to it. Then, Mrs Patricia Lee asked, “Dave, since I am one of the Guarantors of my husband’s estate, then who will be the other Guarantor?”  Dave replied “Connie informed  me just now that she will be the other Guarantor. Is that okay with you?” “Well, if it’s acceptable by the courts then I rest my case,” replied Patricia while glaring at Connie.

To be continued

Peter Lee is an Associate Estate Planning Practitioner (Wills & Trust) with Rockwills International Group. He is also an Islamic Estate Planner providing Wills & Trust services for Muslims. He is based in Ipoh and can be reached at: 012‑5078825/ 05‑2554853 or excelsec@streamyx.com. Website: http://www.wills-trust.com.my.

Ho Ho Ho! Santa Claus Is Coming To Town

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By Peter Lee

Whenever Christmas arrives, I always look forward to songs like “You better watch out! Better not cry! Better not pout! I’m telling you why, Santa Claus is coming to town.” The thought of Santa Claus to children means lots of presents are on its way and you have to be good to receive them. Such a festive season creates the atmosphere of celebration with joy and happiness within the family. An atmosphere like that does create the mood for shopping where most of us will be busy buying presents for our family to celebrate this joyous occasion. If you look around in the shopping malls, it is common to see parents trying out clothes on their children and at the same time taking the opportunity to shop for their children’s basic school needs before school reopens.

All these activities, bring to mind that we, as parents and breadwinners, are like Santa Claus for the family because we have been providing them with all their daily necessities all year round regardless of whether they are good or bad and wondering if they would be saying “Ho Ho Ho! Santa Claus is coming to town” everyday. I guess most of us take this for granted because everyday we expect the breadwinner to come home, and likewise, the breadwinner would always think that they would come home unscathed. Even though no one in their right mind would want to think of the worst, it is time to give a serious thought to the phrase “precaution is better than cure” because I have seen spouses and minor children looking lost when their breadwinner who is supposed to return home safely from the hospital dies from complications.

Taking precaution through planning for our family is not difficult if one is serious about it because it doesn’t take up much of our time. One can start off by thinking of immediate funding for the family upon the demise of the breadwinner and I am sure this is always in everyone’s mind when something happens to the breadwinner. Immediate funding can come from Insurance and EPF through nomination where beneficiaries can receive the monies quickly. But it is also advisable to set up an “Insurance Trust” to provide immediate funding by transferring the insurance policy to the Trust just in case your sole beneficiary, who happens to be your spouse, dies or is disabled or in coma. Such a Trust requires you, during your lifetime as the “Settlor”  to appoint a Trustee Company like Rockwills Trustee Bhd. to pass the insurance money to your intended beneficiaries immediately upon your demise. Other assets, such as money in your bank accounts, investments, properties, shares in your business which will be frozen, can be protected and distributed through a will and with this instrument you can choose your Executors/Trustee, Guardian, beneficiaries and state the condition of your distribution especially when minor children are involved.

Before I sign off, I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Peter Lee is an Associate Estate Planning Practitioner (Wills & Trust) with Rockwills International Group. He is also an Islamic Estate Planner providing Wills & Trust services for Muslims. He is based in Ipoh and can be reached at: 012‑5078825/ 05‑2554853 or excelsec@streamyx.com. Website: http://www.wills-trust.com.my.