Don’t just wish it, will it

Make the transfer of your estate as easy and painless as possible with a will.

Wills give lots of people the willies – but they shouldn’t.

By making a will, you can ensure that your estate will benefit your family, friends and favourite charities, and not the government or the local law office. With a will, you name your executor and determine who’ll control your estate after your death.

A will identifies the people – called beneficiaries – that’ll receive your estate, and helps to minimize the estate expenses your heirs will have to pay out of your estate. If you die without a will – known as intestate – legislation and the courts will decide your beneficiaries, and how much they get.

Dying without a will or known relatives is an even more troubling scenario. This means, after a certain length of time, your estate will transfer to the government. If you have young children and you die without a will, and there’s no surviving spouse that can act as the parent of your child, it’s up to the courts to appoint a guardian for them.

In many cases, a basic will can avoid all of this. A basic will should suffice if you’re under 50, healthy, and not very wealthy. If your estate’s large, more complicated, or you expect estate taxes will be levied, then it’s a good idea to contact a lawyer and an estate planner.

Making a will can involve difficult and uncomfortable decisions. If you’d like some help getting started, call our Contact Centre at 1.866.863.6237.