How to create a legal will in Canada

Also called a holograph will, this document should include your beneficiaries, executor, guardian(s) if you have minor children, and any specific gifts. Note that with any of these options, it’s incumbent upon you to safely store the original signed copy of your will – and let the executor know where they can find it after you die.

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This is be­cause law­yers have the ex­pert­ise to write a leg­ally bind­ing Will and to guide you through the entire pro­cess quite easily. To find out more about the requirements of a legal will, read our comprehensive guide on legal wills in Canada.

To help find the best option for you, we’ve broken down the benefits and how you can make a will using each method. If any of the above situations apply to you, it is a good idea to create a will as soon as possible so you can have peace of mind that your assets will be distributed among your loved ones in the way you intended. Along with the rest of your important documents, your legacy drawer is exactly where to keep a will. It’s the ideal way to keep documents organized so your family can find the ones they need if something happens to you.

How long does the whole process take?

It is very important when writing your Will that you cover the “what if” scenarios. This may seem a little macabre or pessimistic, but all possible outcomes must be supported by your Will. You need to have a plan if you are involved in a common accident with your main beneficiary. You need to have backup appointments if your first choice Executor pre-deceases you. For example, if you are living in Canada and own Canadian assets, but you also own assets in the United States, you can use the MyExpatWill™ service to create a United States Will for your U.S. assets. A blind person can make a will, but a sworn statement will be required from one of the witnesses, confirming that, if the testator had not been blind, he could have seen the witnesses sign.

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A Will in NSW is a legally binding document that makes sure that, after you die, your assets will be managed according to your wishes. When you create a Will, you can trust you’re leaving behind a clear, actionable plan for your loved ones to follow. People sometimes confuse a living will and a power of attorney (protection mandate in Quebec). Where a living will say what your medical care wishes are, a power of attorney often just says who will make decisions, either for property or personal care.

Read more about will template here.

You should have some familiarity with legal language before attempting to write a will. If you use a DIY kit or template, much of this will have already been done for you. If you choose to write it entirely yourself, brush up on any legal requirements of your state and country before you do anything else. Each state and country may have different laws surrounding wills and estates and your document more than likely must meet these standards before it is considered valid. It is usually assumed that if you die without a will in place, your estate will go to your spouse, children or next-of-kin. For example, in Ontario, a common-law partner is not considered your beneficiary and isn’t automatically entitled to any of your assets. If you want your partner to be taken care of, you need to outline this in a legal will.

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