The answer to this question may be summarized as follows (only for your reference purpose, not legal opinion):
- If you do not have a will, you cannot appoint the executor who will administer your estate upon your death, and the person to fill this role will be appointed by the court, it takes longer time and more money.
- If you do not have a will, you cannot appoint who to be the beneficiaries and what to receive of your estate. Provincial legislation instructs who shall be entitled to inherit. For example, if you have a common law
spouse or same-sex partner, he or she will not be considered your married spouse for division of your assets.
- If you do not have a will and your minor children who are under 18, the children’s parts will be payable to the court, and to be held until the children reach his/her eighteen (18) years old. However, your children will take over the estate when they are eighteen (18) whether or not they are able to manage the estate. Without a will, you can not set up trusts to maintain the property on behalf of your children or other family members and make regular payment for the cost of living and education, etc.
- A well-draft will may result in reasonable deduction of probate fee, both at the time of your death and following your death, which would not be available without a will.