A bit of a death-related question...

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12 years 10 months ago #19613 by Pumpkingirl
... but does anyone have a ballpark idea of how much it would cost for a simple amendment to a simple will?

I need to update it but have no idea of cost. I will ring the lawyer tomorrow but just in case anyone here knows in the mean time...

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12 years 10 months ago #290771 by sod
Most do it for free if they are going to handle the end (dispersment. I think it is)

Having time is a measure of enthusiasm:rolleyes:

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12 years 10 months ago #290772 by max2
Mum and Dad did their NZ ones with their property transactions. We did the same 10 years ago when we purchased the forestry block. Haven't looked at it since, but the last one in Aussie we did ourselves with appropriate witnesses etc.

Isn't there a Will pack you can buy here at the newsagents or on line?

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12 years 10 months ago #290774 by kate
We just had wills drawn up - it took two meetings with the lawyers, a few emails and phone calls and cost just over $300 so a simple amendment wouldn't cost much, I think...

Web Goddess

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12 years 10 months ago #290784 by moggy
In the UK (and possibly here, so check this out first) If you sign and get a couple of witnesses to the document, any will becomes binding in law. If the change is straight forward, I would just do it yourself, but if complicated, definitely get the a solicitor onto it.

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12 years 10 months ago #290796 by Pumpkingirl
Thank you all :D

Being a simple kind of girl, it's a simple kind of will, but I'd like to update it to include my nephew so I imagine only one line will change.

My will was a freebie by my lawyer when I bought my farm, but that was almost 7 years ago. I also have to check who the heck my enduring power of attorney is, I can't remember[:I] I wonder if they do?!?!?!?

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12 years 10 months ago #290809 by LongRidge
They should or will be able to find it if you drew it up through another lawyer, because it is a legal document.

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12 years 10 months ago #290904 by NZ Appaloosas
PG, a lot is going to depend on a number of things...are you having your will totally re-drawn up or are you just adding a codicil? Do you have a lawyer that you routinely use, or are you going to be just be a one-off customer for this transaction? Many lawyers draw wills up aas a matter of courtesy for their 'regular' clients, at no charge. Here in Chch, I would expect a codicil/simple will, for a one-off client, to cost anywhere from $50 to a couple of hundred, depending on the lawyer/law firm.

On the will packs, those are great as long as you do not have any assets, have no liability/investment issues, and have no one really other than a child to leave everything to; if you don't fit in that category, go see a lawyer! I'm really not trying to drum up business for lawyers, but there can be unseen issues the lay person won't think about and the boiler-plate documents just can't cover. Everyone should also discuss with their lawyers enduring powers of attorney, both medical and property. I'd also recommend talking about living wills, but NZ really doesn't seem to have a policy regarding those (which I find somewhat bothersome).

Diane


Featuring Wap Spotted, sire of the first Wap Spot 2 grandget in Southern Hemisphere and New Zealand

On the first day God created horses. On the second day He spotted the best ones.

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12 years 10 months ago #290941 by Pumpkingirl
Well, fortunately I don't have need to have a lawyer regularly working for me, so while I have "a lawyer", it's not like I see him on a year to year basis. I only want one line changed but knowing lawyers, it will probably not be the simple action it would appear to be to me.

I would never use a will kit, and I think everyone should have a professionally drawn-up will and an enduring power of attorney, and a trust if relevant. The EPA is one of the most important to me, having seen two in action in my lifetime - we'd have been lost without them, as in both cases there were family who wanted to over-ride the wishes of the person who was ill.

I do personally think the differences in the NZ health care versus that of say the USA would negate many reasons to have a living will. However, I only know a little about living wills, so perhaps I'm missing some other point of it.

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12 years 10 months ago #290946 by NZ Appaloosas
The main point about living wills is that YOU, while alive and of sound mind and body, make the decision as to whether 'heroic' measures are to be taken to preserve your bodily functions, i.e., do you get put on life support machines and if yes, how long. If you are in obvious terminal stages, do you get care above and beyond pallative care, including, but not limited to, gastric tube feeding.

From what I've seen in my time in the legal profession here, NZ does not addres these issues.

I, personally, have been in the position of having to deal with life support machines on a loved one, with no living will, albeit there was a verbal directive made, which my mother overrode partially, and which then resulted in a prolonged argument with my brother, because of the lack of a living will and his not being present at the time of the verbal directive. On the other hand, I've also seen a friend and his family emotionally suffer for following the directives of his parent's living will. It is a two-edged sword.

From what I've seen, the EPOAs are not as 'complete' as a living will. However, again, these are the sort of things that need to be discussed with a lawyer. I don't mean to sound cagey or like a broken record, but in 25 years, when it comes to any sort of estate planning, my best advice has always been "go talk to your lawyer".

Oh, and another thing, if anyone does have complicated lives (i.e., second marriages, kids by other partners, multiple properties in various names, etc.,), you're better off going to someone who really specialises in estate planning than a general practitioner. Even with my own legal background, I rely on a lawyer at least advising and reviewing any documents I've done for us.

Diane


Featuring Wap Spotted, sire of the first Wap Spot 2 grandget in Southern Hemisphere and New Zealand

On the first day God created horses. On the second day He spotted the best ones.

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12 years 10 months ago #290954 by Pumpkingirl
Is there a different legal standard in NZ regarding what family can hold sway over the life of a sick person if there is no medical EPA? In my case, I guess it would be my parents as I have no SO, or if they were dead, my brother and SIL? Or does the whole family have the right to say something?

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12 years 10 months ago #290955 by Pumpkingirl

NZ Appaloosas;273424 wrote: The main point about living wills is that YOU, while alive and of sound mind and body, make the decision as to whether 'heroic' measures are to be taken to preserve your bodily functions, i.e., do you get put on life support machines and if yes, how long. If you are in obvious terminal stages, do you get care above and beyond pallative care, including, but not limited to, gastric tube feeding.

We went through this when a family member was terminally ill. The local hospice organised a meeting of her partner, brother, caregiver (me), the district nurse, her Dr and a counsellor to discuss all this. Her wishes were noted, her Drs advised what they would and wouldn't do (for example, no liquids) and when people questioned it, the hospice staff (and eventually her brother, partner and I) were very firm in dealing with it. Hardest and best thing I've ever had to do.

I don't think this topic has anything to do with the legal profession at all - they may draw up the papers and put it into legal words, but it's actually everyone's personal responsibility to have these conversations with their loved ones, before anything happens. But it's hard to do and makes people uncomfortable, so they don't do it, or worse, if you do it they don't listen properly. Even worse, they put themselves before the needs and desires of the ill person - it was pretty shocking to me to see this happen when my family member got sick.

Fortunately we had a good core team around her and every decision was faced by answering two questions - "what was best for her comfort?" and "is it in line with her wishes?" The answers were easy after that.

NZ Appaloosas;273424 wrote: I don't mean to sound cagey or like a broken record, but in 25 years, when it comes to any sort of estate planning, my best advice has always been "go talk to your lawyer".


And see, I would say, talk to your family first, then talk to your lawyer. Lawyers are not the ones who will pay (figuratively and literally) the price if you don't make your feelings and wishes clear to the people who love you.

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12 years 10 months ago #291111 by NZ Appaloosas

Pumpkingirl;273434 wrote: Is there a different legal standard in NZ regarding what family can hold sway over the life of a sick person if there is no medical EPA? In my case, I guess it would be my parents as I have no SO, or if they were dead, my brother and SIL? Or does the whole family have the right to say something?


That I'm not sure of, as I've not yet had any dealings with anyone not having EPOAs. That being said, I did have a situation where someone had not signed their will, despite it being drawn up, but had signed a piece of paper stating what their wishes were...the Court ruled that the person died intestate. That was here in NZ, btw.

Pumpkingirl wrote: And see, I would say, talk to your family first, then talk to your lawyer. Lawyers are not the ones who will pay (figuratively and literally) the price if you don't make your feelings and wishes clear to the people who love you.


Won't disagree with that, but will add the caveat that sometimes family members think they understand when they really don't, or only partially understand. The reason to speak with a lawyer before the family about something like a living will, etc., would be to find out where the law actually stands on specific issues. For example, what if a family member who is in a position of authority wishes to override them? What legal recourse might be available for other members who feel the discussions about what to do should be honoured?

Diane


Featuring Wap Spotted, sire of the first Wap Spot 2 grandget in Southern Hemisphere and New Zealand

On the first day God created horses. On the second day He spotted the best ones.

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12 years 10 months ago #291170 by jeannielea
From what I've been told by friends who have been thru the experience a written living will makes things much easier if its needed. For example if a person is very aged and frail and gets pneumonia, the will can exclude giving antibiotics. I know of two people for whom this choice was made. One had had a severe stroke and his wife and the doctor (who happened to be a friend), knew he would hate to live in a home totally dependent on others for every kind of care, so it was decided to let nature take its course tho he had painkillers to the end. The other had had Alzheimer's for years and was unable to do anything for herself. She had a living will and her husband said when pneumonia struck the decision to withhold antibiotics was taken easily because she had made the decision.
In the case of both my parents we asked for the same thing but hospital staff said they were there to heal only even though we had talked about it with M and D and knew their wishes. So a living will would have helped them both. As it was they were sent back to the rest home where they lingered for quite some time - and hated it.

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12 years 10 months ago #291300 by drifter
I'm reading with interest. I'd like to add that it is really important that those who will be implementing the living will agree with what is in it. I know it seems like a 'duh' thing to say... but within our family there are those who keep stating what they would like done in this situation. The problem is, the people they have left in charge disagree quite strongly... and also keep saying so. It seems to me to be grossly unfair to put people, who have strong moral objections, into such a position :(

Strange how much you've got to know, Before you know how little you know.

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