The legacy of love blog

Do I need to worry about taxes eating up my child's inheritance?

estate planning Nov 08, 2018

Canada is generally viewed as a country with no estate tax.  While that's true, what many people don't realize is that a "Deemed Disposition Tax," which is similar to an estate tax, applies when you die.

Taxation Issues
Deemed Disposition Tax is so-named because your investments are deemed to be sold at death. Any capital gains triggered by their sale are included in a final income tax return filed in the year of death. A final tax return also includes the value...

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Does adoption affect inheritance?

estate planning wills Nov 01, 2018

Most Wills state that the estate must be shared among the testators children. In many families, it’s obvious who the “children” are while in other families it is less so. An adopted child’s rights against a biological or adoptive parent are very different under Alberta law. When an adoptive parent passes away, an adopted child has exactly the same legal status as a biological child born to that parent. When the Will makes a gift to “my children”, adopted...

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Beware of choosing a U.S. resident as your Executor

estate planning Oct 25, 2018

The global reach of our economy has provided increased opportunities for our family members to work and study outside of Canada. More and more, our family members are moving to other countries to gain experience, launch their professional careers and take advantage of exciting opportunities.

When creating an estate plan, many families look to their adult relatives to act in the role of Executor and trustee of their Wills. Choosing a competent person for this role is critical to the ensure a...

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Should you preplan your funeral?

estate planning Oct 18, 2018

Preplanning your funeral can act as a gift for your family when you are no longer around. In addition to the grief that they will be experiencing as a result of your passing, your family and friends may stress over the details of planning a funeral. They may be uncertain as to whether or not you would have wanted particular services or may be concerned about your approval. By preplanning services and events, your loved ones will be able to celebrate your life with peace of mind in knowing...

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Writing your memorandum

estate planning wills Oct 11, 2018

Writing your Memorandum

  • Describe the item in enough detail so that it cannot be confused with another item;
  • Identify the recipient by name and if necessary, relationship so that there can be no confusion;
  • Date and sign the Memorandum;
  • Store the dated, signed Memorandum with your signed Will;
  • Let your Executor know that there is a Memorandum.


Changing Your Memorandum

Edits made on a Memorandum, even if initialed and dated, may be questioned regarding authenticity.  If you wish to make a...

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Succession Planning with your Children for the Family Business

corporate estate planning Oct 09, 2018

 

One of the most preventable causes of a failure to sustain a family business across generations is a lack of preparation and in particular, the development of a succession plan. Unfortunately, a considerable portion of family businesses have no succession plan in place.  

Below you can find a list of a few simple steps that can be taken within a family business to increase the chances of a smooth transition of the company from generation to generation.  Of course, there...

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Should I use a DIY Will kit?

estate planning wills Oct 04, 2018

A do-it-yourself (DIY) legal Will kit that is correctly filled out can save you about $500 and take care of your assets after you die – but are these Will kits a good idea?

In order for a form or document, like a Will, to be truly effective and to stand up in court if challenged, it must be filled out and executed (signed) correctly. Most people do not know or understand the legalese on the forms and make guesses, which can invalidate the document; in our experience, most people...

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Personalize your legacy

estate planning wills Sep 27, 2018

Some of the most meaningful Wills are those that include messages to family members. These Wills provide a message that can be delivered from beyond the grave.

One of my personal favourite Wills was a Will that was written by a wonderful elderly school teacher who had a close group of friends that got together every week for a cup of earl grey tea and fresh biscuits. Over the course of her life she had collected and been given many beautiful tea pots. Upon her death, her Executor had an...

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When a 'do it yourself' Will is no Will at all

wills Sep 20, 2018

Often times, Wills don't get the attention they should and frequently end up being little more than an add-on service provided by a lawyer when you purchase a new home or a 'do it yourself' document.

Here are 4 common mistakes that our office sees quite often:

1)     Leaving too much money to kids too early...

If you and your spouse die simultaneously and you add up all your assets, like the value of your house, life insurance, investments, and pension benefits, your estate may...

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The Dangers of (and alternatives to) joint tenancy

estate planning Sep 14, 2018

In my practice, I am frequently consulted by seniors who are considering putting their home or cottage into “joint names” with their children. This way they can avoid Estate costs and taxes. While that is true, there are a few factors and legal consequences that people should be aware of before they place their land into joint names with a person other than their spouse. For instance:

  1. Probate fees in Alberta are relatively low and are a maximum of $525.00 for estates more than...
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