Tag Archive for assets

Codicil

A codicil is a legal document that is used to amend a Will rather than replacing a previously executed Will. A codicil can add to, subtract from, or modify the terms of the original Will. It must be dated, signed and witnessed just as a Will would be and it should also make some reference to the part of the Will being amended.

Adding a Codicil to a Will is an easy way to make minor updates to your Will without starting over. The Codicil is a separate legal document from your Will, although it is best stored along with it. Adding a child as beneficiary, changing an executor or including a new asset can all be accomplished through a Codicil

Use the Codicil to Will document if:
• You want to change one or more provisions of your existing Will due to events such as a marriage or divorce, the birth of a child, a move to another province, a significant change in financial status, a change in tax laws, or the death of a beneficiary;
• You want to add or change beneficiaries;
• You want to add or change the nomination of any executor, trustee or guardian.
• You did not include Digital Assets in your existing Will but would like to address them now. Digital Assets can include any online accounts or files stored on a computer or server, such as email accounts, blogs, social-networking websites, and photo and document sharing websites. You can use the Codicil to Will to appoint a Digital Executor to handle your Digital Assets;
• You want to modify conditions or restrictions on the receipt of a bequest, such as the age at which a child can receive a bequest.
Requirements for the Codicil are:
1. it must have your name, the date and the location of the signing;
2. it should identify the Will which is going to be changed by this codicil;
3. It must be signed by two witnesses who are not beneficiaries;
4. An attestation stating that you affirm the codicil, must be signed by you;
5. It must state that you affirm everything else in the will;
6. It should also include a version number of the codicil, if it is the first one or the second one.

It’s a good idea to use codicils only for very small changes, because they can make sorting out your Will more complicated when you die. It is a useful tool, but you have to use it properly for it to be effective.
The risk in using a Codicil improperly is that you’ll end up creating confusion either by contradicting a detail in the Will or by revoking a sentence you didn’t mean to revoke.

The other danger in using a Codicil is that it can become separated from the Will that it’s supposed to amend. If the Codicil becomes separated, the executor might not know about the changes that were supposed to be made.

There are three reasons why executing a new Will may be a preferable course of action:
1. A new Will avoid any danger of a codicil not adequately referring to the correct Will;
2. When only one document exists (i.e. the new Will) there is less likelihood of misinterpretation; and
3. If a codicil is used to revoke a gift made in the Will, the party who would have received the gift will be informed of the change made by the Will-maker, which could cause personal discord in the Will-maker’s relationship with that person.

An unattested alteration made after the Will is executed is invalid, and may also invalidate any existing part of the Will the alteration obliterated or made impossible to decipher.
Both the Will and the codicil require the signature of witnesses. Both are valid only if they are signed in front of two adult witnesses. A Codicil is cheaper than a Will but in some cases, it is easier and safer to redo the Will.

For more information please call us a call @ 604-503-3853

Estate Planning

What is estate planning?
Estate planning is making a plan in advance to distribute your assets to your loved ones and naming whom you want to receive the things you own after you die. However, good estate planning is much more than that. Many people think that estate planning is only for those who have lots of money and assets.

What is an Estate?
Your estate is comprised of everything you own— your car, home, other real estate, chequing and savings accounts, investments, life insurance, furniture and personal possessions.

What is the right time for estate planning?
Individuals put off estate planning because they think they don’t own enough, they’re not old enough, they’re busy, think they have plenty of time, they’re confused and don’t know who can help them, or they just don’t want to think about it. Then, when something happens to them, their families have to pick up the pieces.

What happens if you don’t have an estate plan?
If your name is on the title of your assets and you can’t conduct business due to mental or physical incapacity, only a court appointee can sign for you. The court, not your family, will control how your assets are used to care for you through a guardianship. It can become expensive and time consuming, it is open to the public, and it can be difficult to end even if you recover.

If you die without a proper estate plan, your assets will be distributed according to the laws of the province. If you are married and have children, your spouse and children will each receive a share. This mean your spouse could receive only a fraction of your estate, which may not be enough to live on. If you have minor children, the court will control their inheritance. If both parents die (i.e., in a car accident), the court will appoint a guardian without knowing whom you would have chosen.

Steps to plan your estate:
Many people think making a will is the only part of estate planning, but there are also some other steps that you need to take. To plan your estate you need to organize everything step by step so that it will be easier for your dependents to know what is going to happen after you pass away. You should appoint someone to act for you if are going to a nursing home and if you are disabled. All estate plans should include three important instruments: a power of attorney, a representation agreement, and a will.

Representation agreement:
The Representation Agreement Act allows you to appoint someone as your legal representative to handle your financial, legal, personal care and health care decisions, if you’re unable to make them on your own. You cannot appoint any person who is paid to provide you with personal or health care or who is an employee of a facility through which you receive personal or health care, unless that person is your child, parent or spouse. The document is called a representation agreement and it creates a contract between you and your representative.

Power of attorney:
A Power of attorney is a way to appoint an “attorney” to take care of your financial estate in your absence. With the power of attorney if something happened to you, the person you appointed as attorney will step and take over the situation. Without a durable power of attorney, no one can represent you unless a court appoints a guardian. That court process takes time, costs money, and the judge may not choose the person you would prefer.

Will:
A will is a document which comes into effect after a person’s death. It is revocable and subjected to amendment any time during your lifetime. It gives all the information about a person’s wishes, how the person wants his/her estate to be managed and distributed after his/her death. Sometimes it also called a “last will” or “testament”.

Valid Will:
A valid will cannot exist unless three essential elements are present. First, there must be a competent will maker. Second, the document purporting to be a will must meet the execution requirements of statutes, designed to ensure that the document is not a fraud but is the honest expression of the will maker’s intention. Third, it must be clear that the testator intended the document to have the legal effect of a will. In BC the will must also be witnessed by 2 individuals.

For more information and advice on estate planning and to get everything organized for will preparation please contact Harinder Dail Notary public.

Updating Wills

It is important that you roll into the New Year prepared. With updating your will, you can save your family and loved ones from distress. Some of the most common events and circumstances that may require changes in your will are:
*Death or serious illness
*Marriage
*Divorce
*Birth or adoption of a child
*Purchase or sale of major assets
Take a look at your will and see if any of these situations apply, if they do give us a call to book an appointment to review and update your will!
If you have any questions please leave us a comment or give us a call at 604-503-3853

Purchasing a Home

Buying a home isn’t as easy as it looks on TV or in movies. While you’re packing and getting ready to move into your new home, you have tons of important paper work that needs to be dealt with. In order to complete the purchase a notary public is recommended. A notary public can ensure all your legal documents are filled out and submitted by deadlines. A notary also ensures that the seller has made all the required payments. With the legal advice from a notary you can make your moving process less complicated and less stressful. For more information give us a call at 604-503-3853.

Wills

2014 is just around the corner and it’s the perfect time to make a will if you don’t have one or have it reviewed if you do. A will is an important document that outlines how your assets are handled and who handles them after you die. If you die without a will, the property will be divided according to the various statutes under BC law. To save your loved ones from disputes and hassles its best to have a will which outlines all of your last wishes. If you have recently been divorced or married, it’s a good idea to update your will. The 3 main reasons to have a will are:
1)Choice of Executor- a trusted individual(s) or entity that will look after your affairs after you die
2)Distribution of Assets- as discussed above, a will allows you to distribute assets as you see fit.
3)Choice of Guardian-perhaps the most over-looked aspect of a will for young families is that a will allows you to appoint a guardian(s) for your minor children. Without a will your minor children. Without a will your minor children may end up in foster-homes while a suitable guardian is found.
To create or update your will call us to book an appointment!