Family and Estate Law
Family Law, one will zoomed into divorce matters whether its unilateral divorce or a joint petition and thereafter issues of maintenance to spouse and custody battle. However this branch of law covers a broad area of family relationships such as adoption, guardianship, legitimacy and paternity, judicial separation, nullity of marriage, out of jurisdiction divorce and matrimonial property issues as a result of breakdown of marriages.
It also covers a more protective legal environment for children under the Child Act 2001 and the Domestic Violence Act 1994 or even to declare a love one mental incapacitate under the Mental Health Act 2001.
Interestingly, Malaysia law does not condone pre-nuptial agreements as it is contrary to public policy. However, there is a growing trend for parties to enter into pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements which the Courts may be persuaded to consider the intention of parties and their respective financial positions as expressed in the agreements, but subject always to the provisions of the Malaysian laws.
Estate Planning on the other hand intertwined with the area of family law. It gives guidance in terms of how one would distribute his estate (his beneficiary(s)) in accordance to the law such as through a Will. When the deceased person dies without a Will, the law of distribution applies via the Distribution Act 1997. This is known as intestacy.
Administration of estate is when the testator (person makes a Will) dies, his executor (personal representative) will apply to the High Court for a grant of probate for an order to give life to the Will. If he dies without a Will, the law of Intestacy will apply, whereby his Personal Representative will apply for Letter of Administration to administer the deceased’s estate.
However, all are not a bed of roses, a Will can be challenged in Court for failing the rules of certainty and validity.
There are several reasons why it is important to work with a professional who are familiar with these areas of law. Certainly, family and estate laws are not cut and paste or over the counter DIY. Every case is unique. In DSLY we are a heartbeat away to your legal and social needs. Contact us for initial advice.