When creating an estate plan, Ontario residents are entrusting certain individuals with acting for them upon either death or incapacitation. These fiduciaries must perform their tasks honestly, in good faith and to the best of their abilities. What does that mean for the people appointed to fulfill the major roles in those plans?
Being chosen to administer the estate of a loved one is a privilege that comes with numerous duties. As Ontario residents undertake these duties, they may want to keep a few things in mind in order to make sure they get through the process successfully. This begins with knowing what is expected of them as executors.
When taking on the role of executor, many people have questions. What exactly are executors responsible for? I care for the person who named me, but am I cut out for this position? It is important for Ontario executors to understand the role they are to play before accepting it.
When a person passes away, people are typically aware that some of the next steps involve distributing the deceased's assets to next of kin according to his or her will. In Ontario, those who are designated to complete this task are known as executors. But do executors also have a role to play in the distribution of life insurance payouts that come following a person's death?
Most people name a trusted child or spouse as executor of their will, but not everyone has this option. Many Ontario residents need to name executors even without close immediate family. When deciding who to choose as an executor, there are several factors to consider.
When writing a will, the testator (the writer) needs to name an executor. But what, exactly, does an executor do in Canada? Executors carry out the provisions of a decedent's will. But it's not always easy and it can be emotionally exhausting, so it's important to choose the right person for the job and to discuss it beforehand with the person to ensure he or she would be up to the task.
Choosing the right person to look after the handling of assets is a large part of successful estate planning. Executors are those (there can be more than one) who will ensure the last wishes of the deceased individual in Ontario are carried out. It's a duty that requires both time and decision-making skills. It's important to ask an individual whether he or she would be willing to act as executor instead of simply naming the person in a will.
Making the decision to take a loved off life support is perhaps one of the most emotionally fraught decisions family members will ever have to make. Ontario residents on life support, without powers of attorney, living wills or fiduciaries could end up having the government make end-of-life decisions for them. Those decisions could come from the Consent and Capacity Board, which is an independent medical review panel mandated under Ontario's Health Care Consent Act.
Most people know what an executor is. But when it comes to the term "fiduciary", it's likely many Ontario residents don't have a clue what the term means. In estate planning, a trustee is the ultimate fiduciary.
Of all estate-related decisions, choosing an executor is one of the most important. If you choose the wrong person -- someone who turns out to be untrustworthy -- your life's savings could be squandered, and your loved ones could be badly hurt, emotionally and financially.