Planning your will

Walper-Bossence Law Office Prof. Corp.

Your Will is one of the most important documents you will ever sign. We recommend that you give full and careful consideration to the decisions necessary in planning your Will.

1. MATTERS TO CONSIDER WHEN DRAWING YOUR WILL The purpose of this document is to give you some assistance in addressing the issues which should be addressed in planning your Will.

2. ESTATE SUMMARY We also attach an estate summary sheet which should help you summarize all of the assets you own. This is useful information for yourself, in making decisions about beneficiaries; for the lawyer who will be drafting your Will; and for your executor, and beneficiaries in locating and dealing with your assets.

3. WILL INFORMATION SHEET The last portion of this document is a Will Information sheet. This is useful for the lawyer who drafts your Will in advising them what you want to be included in your Will. Any portions that you do not understand should be discussed with a lawyer before your Will is prepared.

1. MATTERS TO CONSIDER WHEN DRAWING A WILL

a. ASSETS WHICH YOU MAY DISPOSE OF BY WILL

You may only dispose of property in a Will which is solely owned by you. You should note two types of property which you cannot dispose of by your Will:

I. JOINT PROPERTY

Any jointly owned assets (assets held as “joint tenants” by two or more people) that have a right of survivorship will pass by that right, and will go to the survivor of the joint owners. It will not pass according to your Will.

Assets which are not “joint” assets, but are instead assets held as “tenants in common” or “each having an undivided one-half (or one/quarter, one/third, etc.) interest” by two or more people do not have the rights of survivorship and your share of the assets would be a part of your Estate.

ii. CONTRACTS IN FAVOUR OF A SPECIFIC INDIVIDUAL

The best example of this is a contract of life insurance where you name your spouse or other person as a beneficiary. Other examples are pensions, annuities, RRSP’s, RRIF’s and death benefits which are payable to a specific person. None of these will pass through your Will unless you specifically name your Estate as the beneficiary of the contract.

b. SASKATCHEWAN LEGISLATION AFFECTING WILLS

I. THE DEPENDENTS’ RELIEF ACT

This law provides that when you make your Will you must make reasonable provision for your dependents, if you have any. The Act defines a dependent as:

∙ a wife or a husband of the deceased
∙ a person who has lived continuously with the deceased for a period of twenty-four months or more in a spousal relationship
∙ children under the age of majority
∙ children over the age of majority who are dependent due to their inability to care for themselves

If you have a dependent and do not make sufficient provision for the care of that dependent, your Will may be challenged in Court, and the Court may order that part or all of your Estate be made payable to the dependent.

ii. THE FAMILY PROPERTY ACT

This law applies to married persons or persons in a spousal relationship as defined by the Family Property Act, and provides that each spouse or person in a spousal relationship is entitled to an equal amount of the family property as defined in the Act, unless for good reason an equal division would be unfair.

This law also applies after the death of one of the spouses. If you are married or are living together in a spousal relationship continuously for two years or more, your gift to your spouse must be enough to ensure that she or he will receive half of the total family property. We recommend that if you have any concerns about this matter that you speak to a lawyer.

The rights of a spouse under this law are in addition to rights that she or he might have under The Dependent’s Relief Act.

iii. THE ADULT GUARDIANSHIP AND CO-DECISION-MAKING ACT

This law provides for guardianship of adults who are mentally incapable of making decisions regarding their property or their personal care. If you are the lawful guardian for such an adult, you may appoint a successor in your will.

c. ESSENTIAL INGREDIENTS OF A WILL

I. EXECUTOR

This person is responsible for administering your will, and is a very important choice. More than one person may be named as your Executor, and they will then act together. Additionally, you may also name an alternate person to act as your Executor if something happens to your first choice and that person is no longer able to act.

The Executor may be your spouse, a close friend, or relative, or may even be a Corporate Trustee.

ii. CUSTODIAL GUARDIANS

It is often desirable to consider naming custodial guardians for your children, if you have any, in the event that both you and the children’s other parent die.

It is preferable that you name one person, and not a couple, as the guardian for your children to prevent difficulties should the couple separate.

iii. BENEFICIARIES

Bearing in mind the property which you may dispose of by will, and the legislation mentioned earlier, you must choose the beneficiaries who will receive your property on your death. Common beneficiaries are spouses, children, relatives, friends, and sometimes charities.

For any gift, you may name alternate beneficiaries, to provide for the possibility that your first choice as a beneficiary may predecease you. The gift would then go to your alternate beneficiary.

If you name one of your children as a beneficiary in your will, and do not name an alternate beneficiary if that child should predecease you, the deceased child’s spouse will (by law) automatically take a portion of the bequest. If you wish the bequest to go exclusively to your grandchildren, if your child should predecease you, then you must state this choice in your will.

You may make gifts of specific property to a beneficiary, such as a gift of a specific amount of money, or a specific item, or an automobile, or you may make a gift to a beneficiary in a general way, such as ‘all of my estate’ to a beneficiary, or you may make a combination of both specific gifts and general gifts.


ESTATE SUMMARY (download this form)

NAME__________________________________
DATE OF BIRTH_____________________________
ADDRESS___________________________________
TELEPHONE - Home ( )__________________________ Work ( )________
MARITAL STATUS: Married____ Widowed____ Divorced Single_______
NAME OF SPOUSE [or equivalent to spouse]:________________________
[person that you have lived in a spousal relationship with for a period of twenty-four months or more]
SPOUSE’S BIRTH DATE: NAME(S) OF CHILDREN: Birthdate__________________________-
Birthdate________________________________________
Birthdate________________________________________
Birthdate ________________________________________
Birthdate________________________________________
Birthdate________________________________________
Birthdate________________________________________

PERSONS YOU SUPPORT OTHER THAN IMMEDIATE FAMILY:

Name & Address Relationship Age
     
     
     
     
     


SUMMARY OF ASSETS

As stated in the information sheet attached to this summary, certain assets such as joint assets do not pass through the will. When you complete this summary please insert the total value of the assets, and indicate whether it is owned jointly or solely. Deduct only what is borrowed or owing against the assets. If space does not permit you to enter all the information, please use the back of this page and indicate what number you are dealing with.

Summary of Assests
Joint Sole
1. Residence:_________________
    Market Value:_________________
    Less Mortgage:________________
   
2. Personal effects, auto, furniture, etc.
   
3. Farmland
   
4. Farm Machinery
   
5. Grain on hand/all other farm assets
   
6. Other real estate
   
7. Investments:
    Mutual Funds:
    Stocks:
    Bonds:
    Mortgages:
    Savings Certificates:
    Other:
   
   
   
   
   
   
8. Pension Plan Annual Benefits
   Beneficiaries:
If you have a named beneficiary, include value in joint column
   
9. Tax deferred assets (RRSP’s, etc.)
    Beneficiaries:
If you have a named beneficiary, include value in joint column

 

   
10. Name of Business, if any

      Incorporated: yes____no_______
      Sole__ ownership__ Partnership__
     Market Value

   
11. Life Insurance:
     Group:
     Personal:
     Total:
State ownership and beneficiaries:
If payable to named beneficiary, include value in joint column

 

   
12. Cash in bank


   
13. Other assets (list on back of page if necessary)    
     
GROSS VALUE    
     
14. Less debts - bank loans, etc. include joint debts, if any, in joint debt column    
     
NET ESTATE    

WILL INFORMATION SHEET

The information contained on this sheet will enable a lawyer to draw your will in accordance with your specific instructions. Please PRINT clearly. You also must use full names rather than "Mrs. J. Smith". If you are uncertain about a specific item leave it blank and discuss it with your lawyer when you give your final instructions.

There are a few definitions that you should know:

1. The TESTATOR is you; that is, the person making the Will. A TESTATRIX is a female testator.

2. An EXECUTOR is the person who will administer your estate. A female executor will be called an EXECUTRIX.

3. A BENEFICIARY is the person or charity who will receive your assets.

Full Name of Testator:________________________________________________
Residence of Testator:_______________________________________________

PRIMARY EXECUTOR(S)

Name Relationship to You
   
   

 

ALTERNATE EXECUTOR(S)

Name Relationship to You
   
   


GUARDIAN(S) OF INFANT CHILDREN                                                              ____Not applicable

Name Relationship to You
   
   



DISPOSITION OF ESTATE
(a) personal articles: _________ I have no directions.
                                  ________  To distribute as I shall from time to time direct (a letter                                                   of direction to your Executor(s) to be kept with your                                                   Will, will be sufficient).
                                 _________ To distribute my personal articles as follows:

(b) specific gifts:       ________  I have no directions.
                                  ________  To give the following gifts to the following persons or                                                              organizations:
Description of Gift Recipient_______________________________________________

_________________________________________________________________________

_________________________________________________________________________

(c) cash legacies          ______ I have no directions.
                                    ______ to pay cash legacies (gifts) to the following                                                                         persons,organizations or charities:
Recipient: _______________________________________________________                               Amount   : _______________________________________________________

(d) disposition of residue
(this is the balance of your estate remaining after the personal articles, specific gifts and cash legacies have been designated above.)

1. spouse_________everything to spouse if spouse survives me.
    or
    spouse is to receive:_______________________________________________

    __________________________________________________________________

    __________________________________________________________________
[If you do not have a spouse
proceed to children in
paragraph 2 - Children.]
Others to receive:____________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________


2. children:______everything to children in equal shares.
                  ______if spouse predeceases everything to children in                                                                      equal shares.
                  ______to children in unequal shares as follows:

_____________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________

[if you do not have children, and
do not expect to have any,
proceed to paragraph 3 - friends or
persons who are non-family members]

ONE OF THE FOLLOWING MAY BE CHECKED, IF APPLICABLE:

_____If child does not survive his or her share is to go to:
_____children of deceased child (your grandchildren) or,

if none,

_____to brothers and sisters of deceased child alive at the time of your death
_____brothers and sisters of deceased child alive at the time of your death
_____estate of deceased child (this could include the spouse of a deceased child,
         eg. your daughter-in-law or son-in-law)

THE FOLLOWING CLAUSE SHOULD BE CONSIDERED ALTHOUGH IT IS OPTIONAL:

_____if spouse and ALL children do not survive (entire family dies in a common disaster) the residue of my estate is to go to:

__________________________________________________________________________________

__________________________________________________________________________________

ONE OF THE FOLLOWING CLAUSES SHOULD BE CHECKED:

If a minor or infant person (‘minor’ or ‘infant’ in this province is someone under the age of 18 years) is entitled to share in your estate:
_____the minor's share is to be invested until he or she attains the age of majority with the income paid for the maintenance and education of the minor during the minor's minority.
_____if you wish payment to be made to a child or grandchild at some time AFTER the age of 18, check this box and the matter will be discussed with you when you give final instructions for drawing your will.

3. FRIENDS OR PERSONS WHO ARE NON-FAMILY MEMBERS
(These are the names of the person(s) to whom the residue of your estate goes when you do not have a spouse or children.)

(e) Miscellaneous Matters

1. ____Funeral or burial directions
    ____I have no directions for my funeral or burial.
    ____I desire cremation.
    ____I desire a simple funeral.
    ____I wish to be buried at:______________________________
    ____I have the following directions for my funeral and burial:

________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________

2. Tax deferred assets (RRSP, RESP, RRIF, etc.)
    ____I have no directions concerning tax deferred assets.
    ____I wish for my spouse to have my tax deferred assets if he or she survives me and if not, for these assets to be distributed in accordance with the residue provisions of my will.
I have the following directions:

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

3. Legal services
    ____I have no directions.
    ____I desire that the services of____________________________ be retained where any service of a legal nature is required with respect to my will or any of its trusts, provisions and administration.


4. Intention for the purposes of The Family Property Act
    ____I wish to include in my will a statement of my intent with respect to gifts to my children (but not to their spouses).

5. Accounting and financial services
    ____I have no directions.
    ____I desire the accounting services of:
    ____I desire the financial services of:

6. Other matters
    ____I wish to deal with the following other matters in my will:

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

7. Directions for safekeeping of original will:


    ____my will is to be kept in my safety deposit box at:_____________________

           _________________________________________________________________
    ____my will is to be kept with my solicitor:______________________________

           _________________________________________________________________
    ____I will advise my Executor(s) of the location of my will.