I have been at the super, asset protection, tax, and estate planning advice game for a long time and have written more than two million words on strategy, legal, and technical issues. For a long time now, I have been keeping my best tech support Q & As in my vault and gradually releasing them into the LightYear Docs Support and Strategy Centre – which is free for all LightYear Docs users – even those who only use us on a pay as you go basis once or twice a year. And you may not be aware there is no cost to register as a LightYear Docs user.
So why is it free when other firms charge $2,000 + for that sort of knowledge?
Well, to tell you the truth, I am a great believer in giving and receiving. The more that I give of myself, the more that I will get back in the long run. It does not always work out like that but over time I have been blessed to be able to spend my life giving advice, learning, and delving deep into strategies. And for me, it should not be just for my benefit or the person I am helping with a legal or technical issue, but for everyone’s benefit. From the one-man accounting firm to the large financial planning and accounting practices – we all need technical support.
If you would like a quick show around of the Strategy and Support Centre, join our free strategy sessions on Tuesdays at 12 pm and where you can get our, again free, client emails on my top ten strategy ideas. Please contact Ben: firstname.lastname@example.org or Talitha: email@example.com and they will show you around and log you in. I can tell you there are literally tens of thousands of $$ worth of knowledge there and lots and lots of great marketing material for your business to impress your clients.
Why reinvent the wheel when I do it day in and day out?
Here is a sample of one of my latest Q and As.
One of my clients went to some high-priced lawyers regarding their superannuation and estate planning. They were worried about the super going outside their bloodline. The response from the lawyers – “it’s easy – set up a binding death nomination that the money is paid to the estate as a legal personal representative and the executor instructs according to the wishes of the Will and transfers the money into the bloodline trusts!!” And they did not even discuss the estranged daughter who they wanted to keep their estate away from.
Great question, but wrong answer. Here’s my angle on your client’s concerns, particularly with a loaded family provisions gun at your client’s forehead.
If there are adult children or a spouse who are to be specifically left superannuation death benefits, it should never go to the estate for the following reasons:
- The time from death to payment may be months via probate or years if the estate is challenged.
- If the super payment is made from a SMSF, then it can be paid the day after death according to a SMSF Will, which is a document detailing the payment of death benefits directly to a child, spouse, or financial dependant and is not caught up in the estate
- BDBNs are increasingly being challenged with a case before the High Court now. I prefer the SMSF Will as it is stronger and more secure. A BDBN challenge will cost at least $50k in legal fees if it gets to Court and more if it goes to a higher Court.
- Payment of death benefits can be paid into a Family Protection Trust by the trustee of the super fund. This includes both retail (if the deed allows it) and a SMSF. The Family Protection Trust can be limited to bloodline beneficiaries and companies controlled by bloodline beneficiaries.
- Finally, and the most important, a direct payment – to a Family Protection Trust or to a child or spouse is not part of the deceased’s estate and cannot be caught up in a family provisions case (with the possible exception in NSW and the notional estate), which may take years to settle and cost a large amount to defend legally. A case in 2018, Miller v Taylor in WA for a $600,000 estate cost more than $500,000 in legal fees which is why a good SMSF estate planning lawyer never pays super to the estate. A testamentary or bloodline trust is worthless in an estate that is ravaged by legal fees defending an all too common family provisions claim.
I could go on, but there are hundreds of Q & A’s, videos, marketing emails, and strategy packs for your benefit – just contact Ben or Talitha for a guided tour.
P.S. Next Tuesday at 12 pm AEST I will be showing the new LightYear Docs couples Wills and Enduring Powers of Attorney system which accountants and planners can use courtesy of Abbott & Mourly lawyers. If you feel your clients need help with incapacity and estate planning, spend an hour with me and prepare to be surprised. To register, again, for a free event: Couples Wills and EPOA Webinar, visit our Events gallery on LYD2.com.au!