Having a Will is a responsible step in ensuring that your plans are carried out accordingly after passing away. In Canada, it is not legally required to prepare a Will, but it is highly recommended. To create a valid Will, it must be signed by two witnesses and the testator, and at least one witness must swear an affidavit of execution. Our Wills and succession lawyer in Toronto can prepare your Will with proper legal assistance and a fixed fee. Although a Will without an affidavit of execution is still valid, it cannot be probated until an affidavit is filed. This highlights the importance of preparing and swearing an affidavit of execution right after the Will is signed to avoid difficulties locating witnesses years or decades later.
What Happens If You Pass Without A Will?
Having a properly formulated will ensures that the fruits of your labor do not go to waste after your passing. When an individual passes away without a will in Ontario, their spouse is entitled to the first $350,000.00 of their estate as the preferential share, while the remainder is split equally between the spouse and any applicable children. If there are multiple children, the spouse receives one-third of the remaining assets, and the rest is divided equally among the children. If there is no spouse, the children receive an equal share of the estate as per the law of the province or territory, which may not align with one’s desires, especially if they have estranged or differently-abled children. It is important to note that stepchildren are not considered legal heirs under most Canadian jurisdictions and would not be entitled to inherit, making it crucial to have a valid will in place.
Avoid Creating A Will Yourself
Creating an online Will may seem like a wise and convenient choice, but it is not designed for complex legal situations that may require the expertise of a Will and succession lawyer. Some matters that an experienced law firm can assist with include foreign property, cognitive impairment, minors or special needs dependents, uncertain executorship, and the need for dual Wills to reduce probate tax. Choosing a Wills lawyer in Toronto can provide peace of mind while alive and ensure that one’s wishes are granted after passing away.
Minors And Your Will
In Canada, minor children cannot legally own property, so any assets intended for them will be managed by the government on their behalf, with the service incurring an annual cost. Parents of minor children must have a will that not only designates a guardian but also names someone to hold their children’s inheritance in trust. Siblings may also want to be named administrators, but this can lead to conflicts, and jurisdictions may have a limit on the number of people who can be named together as administrators. Dying intestate means that the laws of the province where one resides will determine the distribution of their estate. This can lead to the court appointing someone an individual would not have chosen to handle their affairs, which may be an undesirable outcome for all.
Rely On Duensing Law For Your Will
Our Wills and Estate lawyer can ask the right questions that an online Will may not address, such as whether assets and properties were distributed fairly, what assets one owns, whether to donate earnings to charity, and how much inheritance or capital gain tax one’s heirs will owe. A recent survey indicates that 56% of Canadian adults do not possess a will. If one dies without a will, they relinquish control over the disposition of their assets upon death. The costs associated with managing one’s estate and taking care of loved ones are considerably higher without a will. In addition, the probate process may be delayed as it may take several months to appoint an estate administrator. A meticulously drafted will can bring peace of mind, ensuring that one’s estate is settled in accordance with their wishes and their family is protected.
Wills are a fundamental component of estate and tax planning. Any unintended errors or omissions in a will can cause significant delays and complications in estate administration, leading to increased costs for executors and beneficiaries. Matthias Duensing is a lawyer who specializes in Wills and Succession Planning. In extreme cases, errors may even invalidate the will which were observed to be detrimental. “As a succession lawyer in Toronto, I strongly advise investing in a professionally drafted will. Do-it-yourself will kits are not a substitute for professional guidance tailored to your individual needs”, Mr.Duensing reaffirms.
Why take the risk of overpaying taxes and causing trouble for loved ones? At Duensing Law, we provide private, confidential, and budget-friendly services to help individuals organize their personal and legal matters according to their preferences during and after their lifetime. To schedule a consultation with a reputable wills and succession lawyer in Toronto, please contact us at (416) 601-4769.