You spend your entire working life saving for retirement. Once in a while, it’s important to step back and ask yourself the bigger questions: How do I want to be remembered? How can I share what I have spent my life building with those that matter the most to me? What legacy will I leave behind? It’s also important to share the answers to these questions and include them in an estate plan. It can help ensure that your assets are transferred to the people you want to receive them in the most hassle-free and tax-effective way possible.
The cornerstone of every estate plan is a will. If you die without a valid will, our assets will be distributed as provided for by law; that may not be the way you intended. For example, most people think that their spouse will automatically inherit all of their assets if they die without a will. In fact, in most provinces, your spouse will receive a preferential share of your estate, with the balance being divided equally between your spouse and your children. There are many questions you’ll need to answer before you can draw up a valid will such as: Who are your beneficiaries? How do you want to share you estate amongst these beneficiaries? Do you want to leave part of your estate to a charitable organization? Who will you appoint as executor(s) for your will, including alternates? Who will be the guardian for your children? Do you want to include specific direction about your funeral arrangements? If you own a business do you need to consider estate planning?
Coordinating family and business interests, as well as legal and financial concerns is important when assessing long-range financial plans. Together, we can build and estate plan the represents your final wishes.