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Department of the Attorney General
Annual Report 2015/16
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Agency Performance

Trustee Services

The Public Trustee

The Public Trustee has the responsibility for managing the legal and financial affairs of many vulnerable people in our community. The statutory authority manages 5,595 trusts and assets valued at $1.3 billion. The Public Trustee also provides affordable deceased estate administration and Will writing services to the general public.

Service Delivery

In 2015/16, the Public Trustee received 896 new trust clients (including 684 referred by the State Administrative Tribunal), a 13 per cent increase in new clients compared to the previous year (791).

The continuing high level of SAT appointments can be attributed to an increase in the number of people with decision-making disabilities who may have dementia, an intellectual disability, mental illness, an acquired brain injury or substance abuse issues, and who are susceptible to neglect, abuse or exploitation.

The Public Trustee continues to achieve self-funding and, in a challenging global financial environment, the Public Trustee’s Common Account performed well against comparable benchmarks, such as other common funds and cash management accounts.

Business transformation was a key focus for 2015/16 with the Wills, Legal and Client Service Centres undergoing significant review and restructure to enhance performance, capacity and output.

Business improvement projects to accelerate probate applications and to enhance accessibility for trust clients were also initiated.

Activities to improve client awareness and access included presenting information and training sessions to community groups, service providers and Government agencies, Wills education such as WA Wills Week and Royalties for Regions-funded visits to the Kimberley, Gascoyne and Peel regions.

OAG Audit

The Office of the Auditor General conducted a performance audit of the Public Trustee’s management of customer feedback from represented persons.

The Auditor General concluded in his report to State Parliament that the Public Trustee satisfactorily collects, manages and uses information from client complaints and client satisfaction surveys to improve services to represented persons.

The complaints reviewed also showed that the Public Trustee provided the complainants with timely and informed explanations in its responses.


The Public Trustee’s Give2Good Foundation continued to attract bequests through Wills drafted by the Public Trustee. To date, approximately $5 million in charitable gifts has been promised through Will bequests.

Give2Good is an easy, secure, cost-effective and convenient vehicle that enables Western Australians to make charitable gifts in the form of endowed funds, which accumulate and the investment returns are used to provide a steady and reliable stream of future income to community organisations and causes.

WA Will Bank

The past year saw strong growth in the number of testators choosing to deposit their Wills in the Public Trustee’s WA Will Bank for safe storage.

Approximately 100,000 Wills are securely stored in the Public Trustee’s purpose-built vault and are actively managed and forwarded to executors upon the death of the testator.

High utilisation rates and positive feedback continued to reflect the value of the WA Will Bank to the WA community.

Last updated: 27-Sep-2016

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