What we do

Bob Baldwin is not a lawyer; he is a Chartered Accountant who specialises in wills and estate planning. He is also a licenced financial planner with Lonsdale Financial Group Ltd.

He fills the gap between the accountant and the lawyer because he understands both worlds.

Estate planning is the passing on of your assets and your values to the people you want on the terms you want.

Estate planning, as a law subject, is not a core component of most university law degrees.
Most lawyers have not studied estate planning as part of their degree.

He has successfully completed the Estate Planning elective of the UTS Law Degree, and therefore in the unusual position of being able to liaise with a client’s accountant to produce an estate planning strategy and work with a team of specialist lawyers who prepare the documents required.

He is a member of STEP, the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners, which has some 145,000 specialist estate planning members around the globe and is based in London UK. There are about 500 STEP members in Australia and around 4 in the Hunter Valley.

How do we do it?

Firstly we meet with the client to gain an in depth knowledge of their family dynamics, their assets and liabilities, their intentions (who is to receive what and on what terms) and the values they wish to pass on to later family generations. It’s not just about “having my Will done”.

Understanding a client’s values is essential. Many clients have concerns about the balance of the financial resources being passed on to the beneficiary and the stewardship required of that beneficiary to grow and pass on the wealth inherited.

Next we discuss the client’s financial situation with their accountant, what the client owns, what companies, trusts or superannuation funds are under client control, and the client’s overall tax strategy. Defining what are estate assets and non-estate assets (such as superannuation) is critical during this stage.

After gathering all the necessary information I produce a spreadsheet map of the client’s life estate assets and liabilities and the connections between entities owned or controlled by the client.

A series of strategy options are produced to achieve the client’s objectives then discussed with specialist lawyers, including the identification of any potential challengers to the Will.

The advantages and disadvantages of each option are then discussed with the client. The client makes the final choice. Often the lawyers are present at this meeting to respond to any legal questions.

Specialist lawyers then produce the relevant documents which are discussed by them with the client prior to signing to ensure the client’s intentions have been accurately recorded in the documents.

Services we provide:

Estate Planning
Estate Management
Estate Tax Planning
Complex Estate Planning

News Announcements

University Estate Planning Qualification Obtained
Robert has successfully completed the Estate Plann..

Roles, responsibilities and duties of trustees
The roles, responsibilities and duties of trust..

Discretionary Testamentary Trusts
The deceased’s last will and testament c..

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