Wills and Estates

There is often more to ensuring your legacy and providing for your heirs than just drafting a will.  There are tax considerations, concerns that heirs will mismanage their inheritance, and concerns about fairness between heirs (especially in the cases of blended families).

You should also consider what will happen in the event that you become ill or are in an accident and lose the capacity to make important financial or medical decisions.

Our lawyers have been helping clients with estate planning and wills as well as helping people in their roles as executors and administrators of estates for more than 25 years. We have offices on both Salt Spring Island and in Sidney.

We have offices on both Salt Spring Island and in Sidney.  Contact us at the office most convenient for you to discuss the options available.

Wills & Estates Terminology – Some Helpful Definitions

Will: A formal document that sets out the distribution of your assets after your death.

Power of Attorney: A document that allows someone to make decisions regarding your finances if you should become incapacitated.

Representation Agreement:  A document that allows someone to make decisions about your healthcare and/or finances should you become incapacitated.

Living Trust: A trust set up during a person’s lifetime to hold the legal title to all assets, usually for the benefit of the person that made the trust and their family.  Often called a family trust or inter vivos trust, it is a device to minimize probate fees and taxes on larger estates.

Did You Know:

  • that some assets like RRSPs, insurance policies and jointly owned assets (such as land and joint bank accounts) do not usually pass by your will?
  • that you can pick a guardian for your dependent children in your will?
  • that a person who is to receive a gift under a Will may lose that gift if they, or their spouse, is a witness to that Will?
  • that unless there is a trust provision in the will, the Public Guardian & Trustee will hold all assets in trust for a child under the age of 19 until they turn 19?