updated 29 Oct 2012, 05:03
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Sun, Sep 23, 2012
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Perfectly legal to leave anything to anyone, say lawyers
by Charlene Chua

Anyone can leave anything to anyone, provided it's within the law here.

While two local lawyers confirmed that the drawing up of a will in Singapore does not require one to list their assets or information about their family background, they differed on the will-drafting process.

Ms Kasturibai Manickam, lawyer and director of East Asia Law Corporation, said that even though it was not mandatory to ask a client too many personal questions, she would do so out of duty to her client.

She told TNP: "I once had a case where this man came in with his wife and she was dictating that he leave everything to her.

"The man just smiled at me. I was uncomfortable with that and after questioning him thoroughly, in front of the wife no less, I found that he had three children who weren't even 21 yet.

"At this point, his wife started to argue with me as the man said he would rethink the beneficiaries of the will.

"I told them I would draw it up when he was sure. They left and never came back.

"I care a lot about my clients and I would rather forgo the money than do something that I felt wasn't entirely right."

On the other hand, Mr Foo Cheow Ming, a lawyer with Peter Ong and Raymond Tan, said that he would respect his clients' wishes.

Said Mr Foo: "It's not my duty to ask too many questions, it's not my problem.

"I just do what my client asks of me as long as it's lawful.

"I don't even ask if they are single or married.

"It's perfectly legal to leave anything to anybody, it's his or her will."

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