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Under Ontario law, a person must be at least 18 years old in order to make a legal will. In addition, he or she must be of sound mind, which means that the individual has no mental disability that prevents him or her from understanding the full nature of the document he or she is signing. We would be happy to meet all your estate planning needs. Our Wills and Estates lawyer serves Greater Toronto Area, Peterborough, Port Hope and Cobourg.
There are three most frequent methods of will preparation in Ontario:
Holographic Will: A holographic will is basically a hand-written will, and it is considered valid in Ontario, provided that all of the material provisions of the will are handwritten by the person leaving the property. The will must also be dated and signed by the person formulating the will. A handwritten will does not have to be notarized or witnessed, but having it signed by witnesses will add a lot of weight to it in court, should it go that far.
Form/Fill-in-the blanks will: The form will is designed for people with modest estates. It allows a person to leave the estate to his or her children or spouse, and also allows the person to give money to one other person or charity. Nevertheless, while you may be able to prepare a will through an automated service or a Will kit, there are no guarantees that this documents will protect you in the ways that you planned.
Third Party Will: A will can be prepared by a third party, usually an attorney. A lawyer who prepares wills also can give advice regarding the many ways to leave property and the tax consequences. This type of will must be signed by the testator in the presence of at least two people who are not beneficiaries under the will. These witnesses also must sign the will.
If you have recently married, recently divorced, had a child, inherited money, purchased a home, or experienced another major life change, now is the perfect time to create or revisit your will to make sure that it reflects your current circumstances. As your final planning document, you want to have complete confidence in the legality and strength of your will or estate plan. Our estate and wills lawyer in Toronto is experienced in drafting wills for families throughout Ontario.