Wills & Estates
Edmonton Wills and Estates Planning
No matter what assets an individual may hold, he or she should have an estate plan, including an up to date will, to ensure that the person’s affairs are handled according to his or her wishes.
Stillman LLP has a depth of experience in both effective planning and administration of estates and wills. Our wills and estates lawyers assist clients in drafting estate planning documents including wills, codicils, personal directives, enduring powers of attorney, and trusts. We work closely with clients to ensure that family and assets will be protected and cared for in line with the client’s wishes and directions. We also advise on statutory and other legal obligations that may impact an individual’s estate planning.
We assist personal representatives (executors and administrators) in managing and administering estates, to ensure matters are resolved in an efficient and satisfactory manner, in line with any will or codicil. We also advise and assist with the administration of intestate estates (for those who pass away without any will) in accordance with the applicable legislation. We understand that administering estates can involve complicated issues and sensitive family dynamics, and we help our clients who are tasked with this important work navigate the process. Our approach is respectful, considerate, and professional.
Our experience includes:
- Wills, Enduring Powers of Attorney and Personal Directives
- Estate planning for business owners and farms
- Estate planning in consideration of matrimonial property claims
- Estate Administration and Distribution, including obtaining a grant of probate or grant of administration
- Compensation for Personal Representatives
- Passing of Accounts
- Advising on the distribution and administration of an intestate estate
We also advise and represent clients in contested estate matters, including acting on behalf of the personal representative or acting on behalf of a beneficiary, descendent, spouse/adult interdependent partner, or other claimants. For more information on these matters, please refer to our estate litigation practice area.
If you need to draft a new will or wish to revise or update an existing will, please contact one of our wills and estates lawyers to request a copy of our estate planning fee schedule.
A personal directive is a legal document that allows you to name the person you trust to make decisions on your behalf should you lose the mental capacity to do so. It also lists the areas that they have decision-making authority over.
If you have no will, the Alberta Wills and Succession Act will determine who will get your property after you are gone. You will have no say about which relatives get what, or about how much each gets and the Act has a system of distributing the property amongst your family. Additionally, if you leave something out of your Will, the Wills and Succession Act will apply to the property not included that was not included in your will.
If you have a Will but do not appoint an Executor in it, the court appoints an Administrator with Will Annexed. In this situation, the Administrator acts like an Executor and carries out the instructions in your Will.
An executor is a personal representative who is appointed to look after your personal affairs as stated in the will. Generally, an executor can be a relative or one of the beneficiaries. In many cases, spouses usually appoint each other as executors of each other’s estate. Your executor should be someone trustworthy and who is capable of managing your business affairs.
If you have any more questions related to wills, estates, or appointing an executor for your estate, contact Stillman LLP and we will help.