Administration of Estates & Estates Planning
Muvingi & Mugadza offers a complete range of estate planning, administration of estates, advisory and other fiduciary services.
It provides bespoke estate planning advice to ensure that your estate planning instruments and your financial planning requirements are aligned so as to achieve your estate planning and asset protection objectives.
Our Administration of Estates and Estates Planning Department provides the following services.
Will drafting and safe custody
A will is a legal document that stipulates how the assets accumulated during your lifetime should be distributed when you die. Any person above the age of 16 years who own assets must have a Will.
A will is one of the most important documents that you can create because it speaks for you when you are no longer around. After your death, your loved ones will have to start the process of dealing with your assets and the things you own. A will is your instruction to your loved ones that explains what you wish to happen to your assets (house, property, money in the bank, savings or investments) and who should receive which asset or what amount of money from that which you have left behind.
Making sure that your will is professionally drafted is equally important. If it is unclear and confusing, it can cause unnecessary difficulties for your family. Confusing or unclear instructions can lead to challenges and legal action from people who may feel that they are not getting what they should. This may result in increased costs for your estate in terms of any potentially unnecessary legal fees, estate duty or income tax.
There are numerous risks of not having a will. They are:
- Delays in dealing with your estate which could affect your family if they are relying on their inheritance for an income.
- Without a will the beneficiaries of your estate will be determined according to the laws of intestate succession. This law determines the distribution of your assets to your closest blood relatives. Your assets may therefore be sold or split up against your wishes. Each family situation is different, and some of your assets could be given to someone in your family that you did not intent to benefit from your estate.
- Without a will you also cannot leave a specific item to a specific family member or friend.
- If you are divorced and pay maintenance to a former spouse or children from a previous marriage, your estate could face substantial claims unless you have provided for maintenance in a validly drafted and executed will.
Financial planning and drafting your will Muvingi and Mugadza considers your will to be the cornerstone of your financial and estate planning. Very often we put enough life insurance and investments in place for our family, but we don’t leave sufficient instructions on how such provisions should be dealt with when we pass away. Such provisions include, for example, setting up a testamentary trust for minor children and having the life insurance paid into the trust for their education and well-being.
With Muvingi & Mugadza, drafting a will is simple and convenient. We guide you and your financial adviser through each step. This is to make sure that your will achieves your wishes and is practical to apply. Our will drafting and safe custody service covers:
- the receipt of instructions to draft your will,
- preparation of the document,
- dispatch of your will to you for signature, and
- receipt and submitting a Copy for Registration with the Master of High Court
- Safe keeping of Will.
Trusts can be set up for various reasons and customised depending on your needs. A Trust consists of a Board of Trustees who manages the assets established in terms of the Trust for the benefit of beneficiaries also nominated in the Trust. Trusts may be set up for the following purposes:
- Protection and preservation of assets such as property, artwork and other investments or business interests for the next generation.
- Charitable purposes or other special causes.
- Minor beneficiaries: – either to hold cash and investments that can pay an income to minor beneficiaries for schooling or university, or – to hold assets, such as a house, for those beneficiaries. • Maintenance commitments in a divorce settlement.
- A disabled dependent or an aged parent who may rely on you for financial support but who may be unable to manage money or assets on their own.
The process of setting up a Trust
Our fiduciary specialists can work with you and your financial adviser to guide you through the process of setting up a trust, which includes:
- deciding on the trust structure that is most suited to your needs,
- preparing the documentation required,
- facilitating the execution of the trust deed and related documents, and
- registration of the trust with the Registrar of Deeds
Not only do we end at establishing and registering Trusts, but we also offer Trust Administration as Trustees. The role of a trustee is to attend to all aspects of the administration of a trust and to ensure that this is done in accordance with the provisions of the trust instrument and Zimbabwean case law and legislation. A trustee acts for the benefit of another person or a group of persons (the beneficiaries). A trustee’s primary role is to act independently according to the terms of the trust instrument and in the interests of the beneficiaries. In order to do so, a trustee must at all times act honestly, impartially, in good faith, in the best interests of the beneficiaries, and avoid conflicts of interest.
As an appointed trustee or trust administrator for a trust, in partnership with you and your financial adviser, Muvingi & Mugadza will take responsibility for the following: Secretarial:
- drafting the agenda and minutes for the yearly trustees meeting,
- arranging for signature of the minutes, and
- implementation of decisions made at the meeting. Yearly trustees meeting:
- arrange, attend and chair the meeting at our offices. Trust income and expenditure: • monitor and attend to trust income to be collected and trust payments to be made. Resolutions for the administration of the trust:
- identifying agreements required for the proper administration of the trust.
Deceased Estate Administration
We provide estate administration and executorship services, either as the appointed executor or as an agent. This service involves the acceptance of an appointment as executor or executor’s agent on deceased estates. The executor will attend to the winding up of the deceased’s estate in accordance with the deceased’s will and if there is no Will through the applicable legislation. Our service starts with an initial consultation with the deceased’s next of kin and ends with the Master of the High Court releasing the executor from responsibilities upon completion of the process. The deceased estate administration process is regulated by the Administration of Estates Act, Deceased Estates Succession Act, Wills Act and other Legislation applicable. We work together with your family and all the interested beneficiaries to ensure that your loved one’s Estate is administered professionally and with the input of all interested parties. The process of estate administration is often lengthy and complex as all debtors, creditors and beneficiaries are established and validated. We ensure that delays are avoided, minimising the stress associated with settling and distributing a deceased estate.
52-54 Samora Machel Ave
7th Floor, Pegasus House
T. +263 4 798214 / -4- 790843
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