The answer is yes, most average Australians do have an Estate, and it’s not just wealthy people or those who own property.
An Estate, in common law, is the net worth of a person at any point in time, alive or deceased. It is the sum of a person’s assets – legal rights, interests and entitlements to property of any kind –less all liabilities at that time.
An Estate is not only property or land: it includes cash, personal items including furniture, cars and jewellery, any business interests, rights and licenses you may have, in some instances Superannuation and life insurance policies, term deposits and annuities, investments and securities like bonds, shares and managed funds, and even your social media account.
It also includes everything that you owe; all liabilities, loans and debts including your mortgage.
So what happens to all of this when you die? That depends on how organised you are when you are alive.
Having an up-to-date Will is important. Not only can you determine where your assets go, you can define who will be provided for when you pass away. A Will keeps the process of distributing your assets simple and helps executors understand your exact wishes, minimising any disagreements, complex unnecessary stress and paperwork.