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WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A WILL AND A TRUST?

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Trusts and Wills and two completely different things.

A Will is a document that contains your final wishes on how you want your estate to be distributed when you pass away. Your Will would include detail of who will inherit your assets when you pass away, this includes for example your property/ies, cars, jewellery, investments etc. Without a Will in place, there are no clear instructions as to how you want your Estate to be distributed and so the law of Intestate Succession will apply which means your Estate will distributed according to a set formula by the government. It is important that you make sure your Will complies with the Wills Act to ensure it is valid. It is best not to go too detailed in your Will, as you would then have to amend your Will every time something happens, but you should broadly consider the various scenarios that may be relevant.

A trust, on the other hand, is a legal structure established to transfer property and assets to beneficiaries. A trust requires continuous management by Trustees, but can be a useful structure for Estate Planning.
Testamentary trusts are trusts you create through your Will and when set up correctly, they provide financial provision, safeguarding of assets and certainty for beneficiaries until the beneficiaries are able to manage their inheritances effectively on their own. This means they enable 'financial guardianship' for your beneficiaries, much like a guardian who will care for your children. There are certain tax exemptions which may be applied to the trust depending on its specific purpose. This helps ensure that the inheritance, which is left to minor children or beneficiaries who are unable to manage their own financial affairs, is managed well and to their benefit. In the case of minors and individuals who are unable to manage their own finances, if there is no trust in place, their inheritances are paid to the Government Guardian’s Fund.