Your family is not a math equation nor a gamble. But if you die without a will, that is exactly what the law says they are. Discuss your needs with one of our estate planning lawyers.
To avoid rolling the dice, make a will.
In Alberta, the intestacy (no will) part of the Wills and Succession Act legislation applies an arbitrary set of formulas and rules. This decides how your property and hard earned money will be distributed.
For a typical family of two spouses and one to three children, the legislation would give the entire estate to your spouse first. Your children will not receive anything.
The default law assumes that your spouse will leave the property to your children or that the default rules when your spouse dies would do so. That assumes a lot. Plans can change, and there isn’t any guarantee your children will get their share in such a situation.
For two spouses without children, the entire estate goes to the surviving spouse. That is often what people want. But it might not be what you want, depending on your own family circumstances.
For a blended family, the distribution of your estate becomes much more complicated. The intestacy rules set out a formula for how the estate is to be divided between a current spouse and children of a prior marriage. While the formula is created to provide some certainty to beneficiaries of an estate, the intestacy rules do not take into consideration the present circumstances of your current spouse and/or your children. The formula may not leave adequate provision for your spouse, minor children, or Dependant Adults. If a member of your family is not adequately provided for, they are entitled to commence an action against your estate for further support – significantly increasing expenses to your estate, and also depleting estate assets before any beneficiaries receive their share.
Do not gamble with the future of your money! Create your own plan. Your plan will decide how your money and property gets shared with your family and children.
Contact us today to create your plan, your way.