Chown Cairns Legal Advice Blog

Do I need a new will if I’m getting married?

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Jun 1, 2017 1:24:27 PM

A new marriage is an exciting time in your life and includes a number of legal changes and obligations. 

While establishing your will is an important thing to do, marriage may not be a time when you’re thinking about your will. However, with any major change that happens in your life, your will needs to be changed to address the new circumstances. Marriage certainly qualifies.

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Topics: Wills & Estates Law

Why every parent needs a Will

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Mar 7, 2017 10:59:37 AM

A valid Will is a necessity for any parent not just to ensure your estate is divided according to your wishes but also to ensure that the guardianship of your child or children is clearly defined. Within your Will, you can select the person (“guardian”) who will care for your children until they become adults. This guardian can also manage your money until they’re adults or you can appoint a separate trustee for that responsibility.

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Topics: Wills & Estates Law

How to plan to minimize estate planning taxes

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Feb 7, 2017 9:28:55 AM

In Canada, an estate planning tax is just one of the costs that your loved ones will incur upon your death. Others include funeral expenses and the payment of debts. The number of potential costs and their financial impact is why planning to minimize estate planning taxes is an important part of comprehensive estate planning.

Depending on the size of your estate, estate planning taxes (or “estate administration tax”) can be significant. In Ontario, for example, this tax (formerly known as probate fees) can equal 1.5 to 2% of the value of your estate. This tax is in addition to the taxes levied on your savings accounts and capital gains upon your death.

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Topics: Wills & Estates Law

What happens to our property if my spouse passes away?

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Jan 10, 2017 11:04:40 AM

If your spouse dies, what happens to their property and your joint property depends on two key factors: the status of your relationship and the existence of a valid will.

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Topics: Wills & Estates Law

What is a power of attorney for personal care?

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Dec 6, 2016 10:31:42 AM

If there ever comes a time in your life when you are unable to make decisions about your personal care, your Power of Attorney for Personal Care will have the right to do so on your behalf. They will be responsible for making decisions like where you will live, what kind of health care you will receive and what type of food you will eat.

If you do not have a written document appointing your various Power of Attorneys, the court with appoint someone to handle those decisions.

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Topics: Wills & Estates Law

Your duties as the executor of a will

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Nov 8, 2016 1:54:18 PM

Being chosen or appointed as the executor of a will is an important and complicated duty. When you are chosen as the personal representative of someone's will, you are not only required to hand out the estates property, but you are also responsible for wrapping up the personal affairs of the deceased.

Generally, an executor assembles the estates assets, pays the estate's debts and then divides the remaining assets to beneficiaries appointed in the will.

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Topics: Wills & Estates Law, Family Law

How to reduce your estate costs

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Oct 4, 2016 9:42:59 AM

Funeral costs, legal fees, and other administrative expenses are all estate costs that are unavoidable when you die. Probate fees, taxes, and investments are other fees that you may not have even considered.

Additionally,  before the money and property you leave behind is passed on to your loved ones, your debt must be paid first. You should establish a plan in advance to help cover or reduce your estate costs that you know about and the ones you haven’t even considered.

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Topics: Wills & Estates Law

This is what to think about when you’re making a will

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Sep 1, 2016 10:59:02 AM

If you are ready to lay out what will happen to your estate after your death, you likely understand the importance of having a plan for your property. Having a will in place will help you protect your family and your estate; it is an important document that requires a considerate amount of decision making.

To prepare to set out the parameters of your will, there are many important questions that you must ask yourself. You should ensure that how you plan to distribute your estate reflects your wishes and protects your family. Your wills and estates lawyer will ensure that you’ve properly considered all aspects in-relation to your estate.

Consider the following aspects when you’re making a will.

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Topics: Wills & Estates Law

Here's why you need a will

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Aug 9, 2016 11:05:28 AM

Regardless of your stage of life, you should be considering estate planning measures. While planning for your death is an uncomfortable topic, ensuring that your estate is taken care of can relieve potential financial, administrative and legal consequences for your family or loved ones.

A will allows you to control the disposition of your assets. The instructions that you leave in a legally binding will, will ensure that your intentions for your assets are followed.


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Topics: Wills & Estates Law

The estate planning questions you will be asked by your lawyer

Posted by Estates & Wills Practice on Jul 5, 2016 9:55:58 AM

Creating an estate plan is necessary to ensure that your assets are distributed and handled on your terms upon your death. Your Niagara Wills and Estates lawyer will help you to create the documents necessary to implement those wishes.

The questions that you will be asked during your meeting with an estate planning lawyer will be tough, so it is important to be prepared. You will need to understand your personal and financial objectives and be honest about how your decisions will affect your family members and associates after your death.

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Topics: Wills & Estates Law