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December 2019 Archives

Managing estate administration with sentimental items

When it comes to distributing assets and fulfilling final wishes upon death, high-valued items are often at risk of becoming most contentious. But, it is important for Ontario executors to consider that value can extend beyond the financial and also include emotional impact. Sentimental items, even those with lesser value in the marketplace, can be a significant cause of issues in estate administration. Here are some tips for executors who may be handling these touchy situations.

Outdated wills can end in estate litigation

Most people know that it is a good idea to draft a legal will. Done correctly, documenting one's wishes for after he or she passes is an ongoing process that typically requires regular updates. Outdated estate plans that do not take into account new wealth, family relations, debt and other issues can lead to serious conflicts for Ontario families and executors. Annual review and updates at key points throughout life can help to prevent these issues.

Key business planning decisions to prevent estate litigation

When someone dies, particularly without a binding and well-communicated plan in place, it is not uncommon for disputes to arise regarding assets and succession. This is particularly true for business owners, who often own one more more complex nonliquid assets in their businesses. There are a few key decisions Ontario business owners can make in advance to ease this transition and avoid estate litigation.

Pros and cons of naming multiple executors

When taking on a big and complicated task, it can be good to have help. This is often the thinking behind naming two or more executors to an estate. There are clear advantages to having two types of expertise and perspectives when taking on a big task like executing an Ontario estate. But, the risk of conflict can also make this a challenging situation in practice, depending on the arrangement. Here are some things to think about in these cases.