In Malaysia, the Distribution Act 1958 was amended in 1997. Although the intention of this amendment was to look after all the immediate family members, it created a situation that can make things worst. A typical case of intestacy would be a person dies leaving a spouse, children and aged parents.
What will happen to the property is this. According to the Act, the surviving spouse gets 1/4, children gets 1/2, and the parents gets 1/4 of the estate. This seems okay to many people. After all, every party is taken care off. However things can get complicated.
Remember that the distribution process can take several years. What if during this process, the parent also die without writing a Will? In the case, 1/4 of the parent’s share would now go to his or her siblings. (see the chart)
If the person have one house, that home will now be owned by his spouse, children and siblings. Imagine the difficulty to sell the property. If the spouse is not on really good terms, the situation can be unpleasant to say the least. Furthermore, even if the spouse need money and want to sell the house, he or she cannot do so. This is because the children are still minors. Their share have to be kept in trust until they come to age of majority.
This example is only one of the possible outcome of not writing a Will. In some cases, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunt, great uncles and aunts as well as the government is entitled to a share of the estate. The bigger your family, the bigger the potential problem can be. It seems crazy but that is the law.
To avoid situations like this, don’t procrastinate on writing a Will.
Contact us to find out how to write your Will