Experienced Estate Planning Lawyers Serving Marda Loop, Calgary
Estate planning involves the planning for death and mental incapacity.
Part of estate planning involves drafting proper legal documents such as a will, personal directive, and power of attorney. It also includes consideration of joint assets, beneficiary designations, gifts, and tax implications.
Bruni Law can help ensure you obtain control over your future personal and financial matters by drafting valid and enforceable documents while taking into consideration your unique circumstances.
Our estate planning services:
- Drafting of wills, personal directives, and enduring powers of attorney
- Creation of will trusts for dependants with disabilities
- Reviewing and providing advice on will substitutes, including beneficiary designations, joint tenancy, and gifts
|Enduring Power of Attorney
|Package (Will, EPA, PD)
Prices exclude disbursements and GST.
Additional fees will be charged for urgent and complex matters, including corporate trustees and special trusts.
Questions? Here’s our top estate planning FAQs:
1. Why is it important to have a will?
Many Canadians die without a will, leaving the law to determine how their assets and possessions (estate) are to be handled. Drafting a will allows one to deliberately choose how his or her estate will be dealt with upon death.
2. What happens if you don’t prepare a Will?
Dying without a will means you die “intestate.” No one will be appointed to administer your estate, and there will be no instruction as to the distribution of your estate. Someone will have to apply to the court to be appointed as your personal representative (executor). Distribution of your estate will be done according to the Wills and Succession Act. The Act sets out a schedule of family members who will inherit your property.
3. Can I prepare my own Will?
Yes, but be careful. There are rules and formalities that must be followed, otherwise the will may not be valid. Words must be carefully chosen so that your instructions are clear.
Remember that a will is a legally binding document. Having your will prepared by an experienced estate lawyer can help avoid mistakes and ensure it is properly drafted. Using professionals is especially recommended when you are dealing with complexities such as blended families, a charitable gift, minor children or children with a disability, property outside of Alberta, or if you wish to leave certain people out of your will.
It is important to get it right when it comes to preparing a will. If not, your Estate may incur extra legal costs to fix any problems that arise.
4. What are personal directives and enduring powers of attorney?
A personal directive and an enduring power of attorney allow you to plan for mental incapacity. Incapacity can happen for a number of reasons, including aging and dementia, illness, or a sudden accident.
A personal directive is a document that appoints someone else to look after your personal, non-financial matters such as health care and accommodation. This document allows you to choose in advance who that person will be in the event that you no longer have the capacity to make personal decisions. It takes effect when you are alive and only in the event that you lose the capacity to make such decisions.
Enduring Power of Attorney
An enduring power of attorney is a document that appoints someone else to look after your finances, such as dealing with property and investments, receiving income, paying bills and taxes, and handling debts. An enduring power of attorney allows you to appoint someone to deal with all or some of these financial affairs. It takes effect when you are alive and can be enacted immediately or in the event that you become incapable of making financial decisions.
5. What happens if you do not have a personal directive or an enduring power of attorney?
In the event that you become mentally incapacitated without these documents, family members or other interested parties may be required to apply to the court to be appointed as your decision-maker pursuant to the Adult Guardianship and Trusteeship Act. Such a process can be lengthy and costly and can result in disagreements between family members as to who is best suited to be your decision-maker.
6. I’ve been married for many years, can my spouse automatically make decisions for me when I die or become incapacitated?
No, they cannot. You must specifically appoint your spouse to administer your Estate and make decisions in the event you lose capacity. It is not automatic.
If you choose not to prepare these documents and you die, your spouse may have to apply to the Court to:
- Administer your Estate, in the case of death; and
- Become your legal guardian and trustee, in the case of incapacity (see Adult Guardianship & Trusteeship section).
These applications can result in increased legal costs.
7. How much will this cost?
The cost to prepare your documents will depend on the complexity of your circumstances.
We have provided our base fees for straightforward documents in our fee section however for more information on our fees, please reach out to one of our lawyers.
8. Where should I keep my original documents?
In a safe place such as a safety deposit box or safe. Our clients have the option of leaving their originals at our office, at no extra cost. Wherever you choose to keep your original documents, be sure to let your personal representative (executor) and family know you have executed documents and their whereabouts as there is no Will registry in Alberta.
About Bruni Law
Bruni Law is a two generation law firm located in the Calgary community of Marda Loop. The Brunis, along with the support of their employees, strive to provide legal services in a friendly and approachable environment. Our office is easily accessible with free on-site parking available.
We look forward to assisting you with your legal needs.Learn More