Temp City Image

Estate Lawyers

We all work extremely hard to provide for our loved ones. If we become incapacitated, our loved ones may need to make difficult decisions on our behalf. And when we pass on, what we have will be left to those we leave behind. In the Canadian legal system, estate law is an area of law that governs the procedures and practices associated with planning for what happens when someone dies or becomes incapacitated, and for handling a deceased person’s estate and property.

Estate law covers the role of executors and administrators of estates, the creation and execution of wills and testaments, trusts, probate, medical powers of attorney, advanced directives, and tax issues and other related topics.

The laws regarding most of these areas may differ from province to province. When Canadian citizens pass on, their will and estate are validated through the legal system and the courts, through a process known as probate. An estate generally consists of a person’s assets such as homes, land, investments, finances, and personal items.

The Role of an Executor

The executor of the estate, who may be appointed by the will, acts as the administrator of estate’s assets. The executor locates the will and determines that it was in fact the final will drawn up by the deceased. Immediate duties involve the notification of relatives and beneficiaries, as well as making funeral arrangements and providing for the needs of any dependents. Steps will need to be taken to secure the assets; this might include property deeds, mortgages, jewelry or cash, and any securities or insurance policies. These items will remain in the control of the executor until they are dispensed with.

The executor will prepare the proper probate documents and present them to the court for review. Any tax issues will need to be resolved, including income tax from money received after death. Any and all debts must be paid out before any distribution of the estate can be made to the beneficiaries. The responsibilities of an executor are numerous, and it is not a job to be entered into lightly.

Finding the Right Estate Lawyer

Whether you are serving as an executor or planning your own estate, an experienced estate attorney will be an invaluable ally during this complex process. Legal fees are usually paid through the assets of the estate. Complicated estates may require the services of an estate lawyer and even an accountant.

At Lawyershop.ca, we are committed to helping you locate and retain a qualified estate law attorney who can best represent your interests. We have selected an exclusive group of estate law professionals to meet your needs. Simply click the name of the city or province near you to be connected to an experienced, qualified estate law firm.