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April 2015 Archives

Planning ahead for incapacitation, not just death, a good idea

When it comes time to create an estate plan the first documents that come to someone’s mind are probably a will and perhaps a basic power of attorney. These may of course be an important part of a plan but in many cases are not enough. People should look to the future—not to their death—but rather to how they want to be cared for if their health fails and they are no longer to make decisions about the care they should receive. 

Distributing an estate when there is a will

In our last post we wrote about what someone, who is responsible for distributing an estate without a will might face. In this post, we will address the opposite end of the spectrum, that is, when the deceased created an estate plan or at least wrote a will that describes how assets should be distributed.

Distributing an estate without a will

Following the death of a loved one there are many tasks that may need to be addressed. Once the funeral service is concluded, among other things, the assets that the deceased person owned will have to be distributed among his beneficiary. Just what the distribution process looks like depends on whether the deceased person created a will before he died. In this post we try to cover some of the issues that are faced by those living in Ontario, who became charged with handling an estate of a loved one, if there is no valid last will.

How can I plan to reduce estate costs after my death?

When a person dies, his or her debts must be paid before any estate assets are passed on to a spouse or heirs. Common debts that must be settled are funeral expenses, taxes on Registered Retirement Savings Plans, taxes on capital gains and the estate administration tax, which in Ontario is about 1.5 per cent of the estate's value.

Power of attorney applicable to younger Canadians too

Earlier this month we wrote a post about when a capacity assessment might be needed. In that post we mentioned that the assessment could be necessary when an individual fails to plan ahead for mental incapacity and eventually finds himself unable to look after his own affairs.