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Wills and Trusts are instruments for the distribution of estates.

A Will takes effect only upon death and is sometimes referred to as a testamentary trust. An administrator or executor, either an individual or corporation must be appointed. Two (2) witnesses are required to validate the Will but both the witnesses should be independent and have no beneficial interest in the Will.

A Trust is an arrangement in writing in which the estate is managed by an individual or entity for the benefit of an individual or a group of individuals, eg. a charitable organisation. A Trust may be created by a settlor or donor, for the beneficiaries, and executed while the settlor is still alive or upon death.

The Trust Deed governs the terms of the Trust while the Trustee is obligated to act according to the Trust Deed under the Malaysian Trustee Act.

It is important to review the Will or Trust regularly to ensure they continue to meet the objectives and intentions of the testator or settlor and to keep the records of estates current. In addition, there may be changes in beneficiaries or distribution of the shares of the estate.

While the law recognises a personal draft of a Will, it would be advisable to seek the services of an estate planner or advisor or a trust corporation. Would you seek medical treatment from an untrained practitioner?