Estate planning is about life—in the present and in the future. Most importantly, estate planning is about the life of your family and loved ones—and the peace of mind you get from helping safeguard their financial security.
By its very nature, estate planning is a difficult subject to discuss and even more so to plan for because it forces us to come to terms with our own mortality. Yet it’s something you need to talk about openly with your loved ones today, before it is too late.
Each person will approach estate planning differently, with personal motivations and expectations. No estate plan will be exactly like another. Estate planning should be a reflection of your personal priorities and choices.
Rational motivations in Estate Planning
- Provide adequately for family members and/or other loved ones
- Ensure that your estate is distributed in the most timely manner possible after your death
- Minimize taxes – during your lifetime and, equally important, for the beneficiaries of your estate
Emotional motivations in Estate Planning
- Gain comfort from knowing your loved ones are well looked after
- Feel secure knowing that settling your affairs will not add more stress to those grieving for you
- Rest assured that your estate will be distributed the way you wish
Why you need an Estate Plan
- Benefits of estate planning
- Distributes your assets as you intended; provides funds to cover funeral expenses, as well as immediate and/or long-term family living costs
- Keeps more of your money in the hands of your heirs
- Minimizes income tax and probate fees (no probate fees in Quebec); designates charitable gifts; declares your personal care preferences, including terminal medical treatment and organ donation intentions
- Provides for the tax advantages of income splitting
- Ensures business continuity for business owners
- Identifies the people chosen to carry out your last wishes and care for your children
This is only a brief description of what you need to consider to make an estate plan, but at minimum you will need an advisor, a lawyer and probably a tax professional too. That is if you want to apply the most current tax, trust, estate and family laws of your province to your personal situation.
Let’s talk. We can help.