When you have worked hard during your working life it is natural to want two things
- the ability to enjoy the fruits of your labour in retirement and
- to be able to pass on remaining assets to your family when you pass away - without passing on a tax bill.
Centrelink - ensuring you receive any benefit to which you are entitled means that you need to consume less of your own capital. Centrelink benefits can be a fortnightly pension but can also include discounts on utilities and pharmaceuticals. Receiving even $1 per fortnight of Pension can mean you qualify for these other discounts. The process of applying for a Centrelink benefits involves a minimum of 60 pages of forms and can be very frustrating. Having assisted hundreds of clients with these forms we are able to smooth the way for you.
Likewise maintaining a pension can sometime involve ongoing correspondence with Centrelink. By becoming your "correspondence nominee" we receive a copy of anything Centrelink send you and can assist on an ongoing basis.
Aged Care - at some point most of us will need to consider where we live in our "old age". As families have become more far flung over recent generations we cannot always assume family will be close by in this time. Even when they are, they may not have the time or skills to look after us. Aged Care facilities offer different levels of care in a community environment. They range from
- retirement villages (independent community living) to
- low care (hostels) to
- high care (nursing homes).
Getting access to these facilities can be a complicated business and ensuring the fees you pay both upfront and ongoing are optimised requires advice prior to entry.
Estate Planning is the process of examining what assets you own or control, deciding where or with whom you would like these assets to end up and setting up an effective transfer mechanism. Most people think simply completing a Will is all that is required. In reality there are numerous assets (Superannuation, homes owned as joint tenants and Life policies) that do not always form part of an 'Estate' and are therefore unaffected by what you might set out in a Will.
It can also be the case that assets directed to different people can be received with differing tax implications.
Getting good advice in this area means that you can be confident your assets do in fact end up where you intended and with the least amount of tax payable.