Yes, you need a will. Unfortunately, only about half of Canadians over the age of 18 have one. And it could cost those you leave behind – dearly.

At Kaufamann, Dockrill & Associates, we provide Will and Estate planning that not only helps you properly structure your estate (Executor, Beneficiaries, and other details). we also work with you to help you document any “final instructions” that might not make it into a will, but allow your final wishes to be honoured after your death. What’s more, we store a copy in our files, to make sure these instructions are available to your Executor (and no one has to spend time digging around to find them).

Even the simplest estate requires a carefully prepared will; if you are over the age of 18, and own a car, a piece of property, or have digital assets (even digital photos stored in the “cloud”), you need a will to ensure your family has access to those accounts and that data after you pass. If you don’t, it could take months (or possibly even years) and thousands of dollars to go through the government and legal processes that allow you to sell the car or property, or access any digital storage or social media accounts.

If you want to ensure that the needs of children and other dependents are met in the event of your death, especially in today’s world of second and third “blended” families, having a will is an absolute requirement. Otherwise, you may unintentionally prevent your children or dependents from accessing various estate assets, such as your home, cottage, shares in a private corporation, RRSPs and RRIFs, works of art, an interest in a family trust, commercial or rental property, and the list goes on.

From drafting your will to finalizing your estate, our firm is committed to meeting your will and estate needs. We help our clients plan their estates, by taking into consideration the various types of taxes which may be payable upon their death, and taking steps to minimize those taxes (including capital gains tax, income tax and probate fees). We co-ordinate with your financial advisor, accountant, and even your funeral director (in cases where you have pre-planned your funeral – another thing we strongly recommend). In this way, we are part of a team approach to helping you plan for your inevitable passing.

Our friendly and experienced support staff will assist in walking you through every detail, making the process of preparing your will (or administrating a loved one’s estate) as stress-free and uncomplicated as possible. We take into consideration the provisions of the Family Law Act, the Succession Law Reform Act, the Estates Administration Act and various other pertinent pieces of legislation and case law when preparing wills, so that your will truly reflects your personal plan.

Simply put, if you don’t have a will, you could leave behind a legacy of family conflict, confusion, and unintended consequences. For that reason, it is essential that extreme care be taken in drafting your last will and testament. A properly prepared will can save your estate and family money, and simplify the administration of your estate during what will be an extremely emotional time for those you leave behind. Which should give you greater peace of mind today.

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