Although it can be uncomfortable to think about dying or becoming incapacitated, it is important to plan for the future. Having your estate documents in order will not only give you and your family peace of mind, but it will also give you control over what happens to you and your estate.
A sound estate plan includes a Will, an Enduring Power of Attorney, and a Personal Directive.
A Will allows you to name a Personal Representative to manage your estate and to predetermine how your estate will be distributed and how your loved ones will be provided for. Without a Will, the Wills and Succession Act determines how your estate will be distributed and to whom.
If you have minor children, a Will is even more important because you can specify who their Guardian will be. At Grover Law Firm, we consider your individual circumstances to create a Will that reflects your needs and wishes.
Enduring Powers of Attorney
An Enduring Power of Attorney allows you to appoint someone as your “Attorney” to manage your finances, either immediately or upon mental incapacity. For example, your Attorney could pay your bills, authorize financial transactions, and sell property on your behalf. If you become incapacitated and do not have an Enduring Power of Attorney, your family may have to apply for Trusteeship in order to manage your financial affairs.
A Personal Directive allows you to appoint someone as your “Agent” to make personal decisions on your behalf, if you lose capacity to make those decisions yourself. For example, your Agent could make decisions about your medical care, accommodations, who you live and associate with, and your participation in social/educational/employment activities. You are also able to include guidelines for your Agent, to ensure they know your wishes when making these decisions. If you lose capacity and do not have a Personal Directive, then someone may be chosen to make those decisions for you, or your family may have to apply for Guardianship.
Having an Enduring Power of Attorney and a Personal Directive will relieve your family of the burden of applying for Trusteeship or Guardianship, help prevent family conflicts, and give you peace of mind knowing that your wishes are known and that someone you trust will be managing your affairs.
Grants of Probate and Grants of Administration
Depending on the type of assets in an estate, a Grant of Probate may be required to establish the validity of a Will, and if someone passes away without a Will, a Grant of Administration may be required to obtain authority to manage the estate. Our office can you help obtain Grants of Probate and Grants of Administration.