When it comes to wills and estates, it is common for people to leave their assets to a spouse, followed by their children. This traditional structure of passing wealth to children can become complicated in a blended family. While the process of writing and administering a will are similar regardless of family structure, more complex family structures can lead to additional challenges. In these cases, clear consideration and communication are important for seamless estate administration in Ontario.
When a person passes away, his or her assets are distributed amongst beneficiaries, often based on a will. Unexpected occurrences, such as the death of an heir, can make estate administration more complicated than it may seem on the surface. Here is how to approach the administration of an Ontario estate if a beneficiary dies prior to distribution.
Almost every family has some difficult issues to consider when preparing estate plans, but those who are particularly wealthy may have additional considerations. Many wealthy Ontario families hand over estate planning decisions to financial advisors, but it may be beneficial to take a closer look at their recommendations before finalizing a strategy. This attention will not only help families identify their best options, but also ease the estate administration process later on.
As the economy changes and housing costs rise, an increasing number of grandparents are offering financial assistance to their grandchildren. This shift in priorities can impact estate planning and estate administration, especially if grandparents would like to leave money to help their grandchildren only with particular purchases like a home or education. Here are some ways Ontario grandparents can approach the delicate subject of grandchildren in estate planning.
A family home is often at the center of estate planning efforts. But there are other large-scale assets that can often cause serious disputes and estate administration challenges in Ontario families. Cottages are one common asset that can cause discord among families. Here are some steps cottage owners can take to prevent conflict around this often beloved family asset.
A business, land and property, and changes in marital status can all add challenges to estate planning. For some Ontario families, all three issues are involved in their wealth planning and estate administration. With the rise of so-called "grey divorce," many farming families with large amounts of land and business assets have had to change their estate plans later in life. Neglecting to do so, or missing a step, can make for particularly difficult estate administration.
Ontario residents who have a trust may already know that they need to fund it. Without addressing this important step, the trust may not be worth the paper it is written on when the time comes. One of the reasons many people use trusts is to help simplify the estate administration process, but that will not happen if they do not contain any assets.
Ontario residents can spend a number of years working to build their wealth in order to enjoy retirement and provide for their families after death. After making years of good decisions to accomplish these goals, they would be remiss in failing to appropriately plan for estate administration. Creating a plan that allows surviving loved ones to move forward with as little complications as possible can rectify this problem.
The death of a loved one can devastate an Ontario family. While many family members want time to process their grief, certain tasks need attention nearly right away. Many people believe that the work does not begin until the probate is filed, but the estate administration process actually begins much sooner.
Few people here in Ontario or elsewhere want to voluntarily sit and contemplate their own deaths. Even so, this is exactly what they have to do in order to build an estate plan. If emotions get in the way of taking this step, it could sabotage and unnecessarily complicate the estate administration process for surviving family members who must ultimately deal with the estates.