Your Will and Aged Care Accommodation
If you (or your spouse) are considering entering Residential Aged Care then you should undertake a review of your Will.
Many people leave all of their estate to their spouse, however this is not always the best decision.
For example only:
- If your spouse receives an aged pension and has entered into in Residential Aged Care and the Australian Government contributes to the Aged Care Daily Accommodation Payment for your spouse; and
- If you have children or other beneficiaries who would benefit from an inheritance;
Then in some cases it may be beneficial to leave some or all of your assets to your children or other beneficiaries rather than to your spouse.
The reason for this is that if your spouse inherits assets then:
- This may increase how much your spouse has to contribute to the costs of their Residential Aged Care.
- It might reduce the amount of Aged Pension that your spouse may be entitled to.
However circumstances can vary greatly.
NB how you currently hold your assets is important, as the gifting rules may come into play if you need to sever joint tenancies and this could adversely affect your and your spouse’s pension.
Likewise the value of your and your spouse’s assets and how close they are to the relevant asset test thresholds may also make a difference.
We therefore recommend you obtain legal and financial advice specific to your situation prior to altering your Will.