When setting up an estate plan, part of that planning will include putting a will in place. A will is a document that is legally binding. It tells your heirs what you want done with your assets and property when you are no longer here. You can include real estate, cash, investments and household items in your will.
Of course, if you own property with your spouse, the will cannot cover property that is jointly held. If you and your spouse have a joint savings account or a house that is owned in joint tenancy, the property belongs, in full, to your spouse when you pass away. This is called “right to survivorship.” A will also doesn’t apply to things like life insurance where you have a designated beneficiary.
As stated before, a will is only part of an overall estate plan. You can take the route of transferring assets before you die to those you want to have your property later, and this will save them on taxes and other financial consequences.
Are you beginning to see that there are many benefits to having a will as part of your estate plan? Letting the law firm of Garton & Harris hear your story can give you a real peace of mind. We have been writing wills and handling estates for many years. We know the laws of British Columbia and will be a no-nonsense law firm on your behalf.
Another aspect of putting a will in place is naming an executor. This person will be responsible for safeguarding your property. For instance, if your home is left empty, this individual will not ensure the property is taken care of, but will pay your debts, including taxes. He or she will ensure that the remaining balance is distributed as you want it to be.
If you feel overwhelmed by the responsibility of writing a will, we may be able to help.