If you are the executor of a Will in BC and need assistance to probate a Will, or if there is no Will and you need assistance in administering a BC estate, contact Mary-Jane Wilson, a Surrey, BC lawyer

 

Probate Video Primer

 

Wills and Estates - Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is probate?

Probate is having the court establish that a Will is valid. Check out our online Probate Video Primer.

2. How much are probate fees in British Columbia?

(a) $200.00 on the first $25,000.00
(b) $6.00 per $1,000.00 on the next $25,000.00
(c) $14.00 per $1,000.00 or part thereof on assets over $50,000.00.

3. What happens if I die without a Will?

If you die without a Will in BC, the Wills, Estates, and Successtion Act sets out who will be the beneficiaries of your estate. It depends on who is in your family to determine who will receive what in BC: spouse and children receive first, if there is no spouse or children, then grandchildren take, then parents, if no parents, then brothers and sisters, etc. The estate goes to the government only if there are no nieces and nephews.

4. What does it cost to probate a Will?

The cost to probate a Will will vary depending on the size and complexity of the estate. We offer a free initial consultation to obtain all the facts to enable us to provide you with a fee estimate.

5. What does it cost to prepare a Will?

 
Fees
Fees & Disbursements

One (1) Standard Power of Attorney
Appointing one attorney

$200.00
$225.84
One (1) Standard Will $400.00 $470.25
One (1) Standard Will and
One (1) Standard Power of Attorney
Appointing one attorney
$600.00
$696.09
Two (2) Standard Power of Attorney
Appointing one Attorney
$400.00 $453.52
Two (2) Standard Wills $450.00 $550.71
Two (2) Standard Wills with
Two (2) Standard Powers of Attorney
Appointing one Attorney
$850.00 $998.71

Please note that the quotes are for simple Wills.

Our fee changes for more complicated Wills where special drafting is required (ie: discretionary trusts for children with disabilities, or if you plan to exclude a legal spouse, partner or child (even if an adult) from the distribution of your estate).

Of course, GST(5%) and PST(7%), photocopies and the cost of filing Wills Notices are added to our accounts as shown in the second column.

6. What is a Power of Attorney?

A Power of Attorney is a document wherein you can appoint someone to take care of your financial affairs. It is not a health care document in British Columbia. The Power of Attorney, unless an enduring Power of Attorney, ceases on the incapacity of the donor.

7. What is an enduring Power of Attorney?

An enduring Power of Attorney is a document wherein you can appoint someone to take care of your financial affairs. It carries on after your incapacity. The enduring Power of Attorney survives any mental infirmity on your part.

8. What is a Living Will?

A Living Will is a health care directive that expresses your wishes with respect to whether or not you want any “heroic measures” to keep you alive. A Living Will can be helpful to your loved ones when making difficult end of life decisions.

9. What is a Representation Agreement?

A Representation Agreement is a document wherein you can appoint someone to make decisions about your financial matters as well as your health care decisions.

10. Why do I need a Power of Attorney if all my assets are held jointly with my spouse?

An enduring Power of Attorney should be considered even if your assets are held jointly because you have no signing authority for the other joint tenant in a property transaction without being appointed as an attorney under a power of attorney or appointed as a representative under a representation agreement. The property will pass to the surviving joint tenant on death but the joint tenancy itself gives you no power to sign for the other joint tenant while he or she is not capable and alive.

11. What is a Committeeship?

If you did not plan for incapacity by making an enduring Power of Attorney or a Representation Agreement, someone can apply to be your Committee under the Patients Property Act. This is a court application whereby two doctors must swear affidavits to attest to your incapacity and the Public Guardian and Trustee must be notified.

12. How often should I review my Will?

Generally speaking, you should review your Will every five years. If there are substantial changes in your life; births, deaths, change in financial circumstances, then your Will should be reviewed at that time.


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