Sometimes our children or close family members run into a financial bind and need to borrow money. In many cases both the lender and the borrower assume that this money will be paid back quickly. What happens if the lender, who is frequently an elderly parent, dies before the loan is repaid? In my experience this is when the family feud begins, as the borrower will say this money was a gift to them, and the other beneficiaries, frequently the borrower’s siblings, will feel it is a loan...
Being an Executor is not an easy job. Remember just because you are appointed in a will, it does not mean that you have to accept the position. Here are some pointers on when you should refuse to act as an executor. We also cover the top 4 things that get executors into trouble.
WHEN NOT TO BE AN EXECUTOR
Many people feel honoured when they are asked to be the Executor for a friend or family member’s estate. When someone asks you to be their Executor it feels terrific; they are indicating that they believe you to be trustworthy and have good judgement. For many of us, this gives us a great feeling of pride, and we want to fulfil our duties to the best of our abilities. Sadly, many people discover that it is much more difficult than they realized. In my...
Most clients ask our office to draft Wills and estate plans that will help them avoid capital gains. This is an impossible wish. Some people will attempt to sell the property to a family member for less then fair market value. This results in any Capital Gain being taxed twice as the gain will be taxed in both the deceased and the family member’s hands. Thus, no net savings.
Some people believe that placing a family member joint on title with them will avoid capital gains. However, the...
Our office is seeing more and more people who are worried about not only what happens to their children when they die, but also who will be taking care of their beloved pets.
Our lawyers recently met with a vibrant middle-aged client who had a beloved pet Cockatoo named Tootsie. Our client wanted to make sure that Tootsie went to a good home after she died and needed to make sure that the person who took care of her liked birds. She had asked her friends, but given there ages,...
Protecting Your Business From Capital Gains Tax – The Estate Freeze
As a business owner, your estate plan should address both your personal and business assets. However, estate planning for business owners is more complicated as it needs to address potential tax issues. If you want to maximize the wealth of your estate by minimising its tax burden, an estate freeze is a useful tool.
CAPITAL GAINS TAX
Any assets not inherited by the surviving spouse or...
Its been two years since my team and I set out on our own to create Estate Connection. Before I began my new law firm I sat down and wrote out what I wanted our new firm to be like. It became known as our manifesto and today we are happy to share it with you.
To the 1100 client who helped us move from living on a prayer to living the dream - I say thank you! Heres to helping more people leave a legacy of love! XOXO
Many time clients come to our office with wills that are old. They are unsure if their will needs to be updated, even though their will maybe 44 years old (yes this did happen). Here are some basic things that you should be checking for when looking over your old will or if you are reviewing a will to determine if you should be the executor of a will:
No – Contact An Estate Lawyer if
The Will is the original.
If the Will is a photocopy
Our office was contacted by a 32-year-old client who was attempting to deal with her father's estate. She had found the process quite complicated and confusing, especially given that she had never attended a funeral before.
Our client was overwhelmed, and the thought of writing her fathers eulogy was more then she could handle. Our office walked her through our executor's handbook, a document that outlines what you do the first 365 days after death. One of the first steps was writing a...
Generally, our Mondays begin in the same way: We have an answering machine filled with messages from Executors for our clients who have passed away. The Executors are in a panic because they do not know where their loved one's assets are located, what they should be doing, or if they would like to take on the job of acting as an Executor.
To help our clients and future clients, we have drafted a list of ten tips for performing as an Executor. If you are an Executor and have additional...
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