A Will is your primary estate planning document and speaks to your wishes at the date of your death and outlines your instructions for how you intend for your estate to be distributed, who you wish to be in charge of such distribution, as well as who you wish to be appointed as guardians for your minor children once you have passed.
In certain circumstances, where a beneficiary is a minor child, a person with a disability or an adult where there are concerns with his or her ability to manage his or her financial affairs, creating a Testamentary Trust within your Will may also be appropriate. At Housen Law, we will fully discuss those circumstances with you and advise you as to the suitability of a Trust.
If you do not make a Will, your assets will be distributed according to legislation which may not align with your wishes and could result in higher administration costs.
It is important to review your Will on a regular periodic basis to ensure that it still reflects your wishes. It is also important to update your Will whenever circumstances in your life change whether that be your financial situation, marriage, the birth of a child, or any other significant life change.
At Housen Law, we will review your individual circumstances and wishes with you and then provide you with advice as to your best estate planning options based on your needs and the applicable legislation. We will then prepare your Will in accordance with your instructions and provide you with an opportunity to review and discuss your draft Will with a lawyer before you have to sign the document.
Powers of Attorney
A Power of Attorney is a document that allows you to grant someone the authority to make decisions on your behalf under certain circumstances. In Ontario, the law provides for your making Powers of Attorney for Property and Personal Care.
The person(s) you name in your Power of Attorney for Property will be granted the authority to make financial decisions on your behalf. This authority can be granted when you become incapable and also in situations when you are not incapable, but are unable to be present to make an important financial decision.
The person(s) you name in your Power of Attorney for Personal Care will be granted the authority, when you become incapacitated, to make decisions on your behalf regarding such issues as healthcare, where you reside and end of life decisions.
If you do not have Powers of Attorney in place when you become incapable, the process of getting one appointed is significantly more complex and costly. Furthermore, it is best to choose someone you trust and who knows your wishes rather than having someone appointed for you.
At Housen Law, we are experienced in the preparation of Powers of Attorney and will ensure that your documents accurately reflect your wishes.
However, in the event that someone should fail to prepare Powers of Attorney prior to becoming incapable, we also provide services in the following areas:
1. Application for Guardian of Property; and
2. Application for Guardian of the Person.
Thanks to Richet and Richard for the excellent service they provided recently with our Wills and Powers of Attorney – we were truly impressed!
Richard has represented my husband and I in several real estate transactions and with preparing our power of attorney documents. Richard explains things thoroughly to make sure we understand before signing any documents. He is very professional and also prompt in returning my calls. We will continue to use his services. I also referred clients to Richard and will continue to do so if any family and friends need legal assistance. I highly recommend Richard. – M.C.
From the first introduction and handshake, we felt comfortable in the offices of Housen Law. It is sometimes stressful to discuss life’s biggest decisions such as wills, powers of attorney, real estate, etc. but Richard and Richet explained and answered every question in a courteous, respectful, and professional manner. We were very happy with their services and highly recommend Housen Law.
My husband and I recently had our Wills prepared by Housen Law. We were very impressed with the professional manner we saw, and we were given excellent guidance that helped us through this process. The rate charged for doing the Wills was a very good rate compared to other law firms. We were also amazed at how fast the Will was prepared. The previous Wills that we had done by a different law firm did not compare to the Wills prepared by Housen Law. Both my husband and I would highly recommend Housen Law. We all need the peace of mind, that our wishes are carried out after we go, and I am confident that Housen Law will do that. – BJO
We had an excellent experience with Housen Law in preparation of a Will. Mr. Housen was very approachable and professional.
Richard Housen has been my lawyer for sixteen years. Over the years he has provided excellent service in a variety of legal matters. Housen Law continues to provide exemplary service and demonstrates a commitment to clients that goes above and beyond.
Richard and his team provided all round excellent and professional service. They made dealing with a lawyer an effortless necessity. Richard was calm and knowledgeable and made it comfortable and seemingly easy to get through the mountain of documents and legal jargon. His flexible hours made it very convenient for our busy schedule. Liz was also very attentive and responded in a timely manner to all queries, and paid great attention to detail as well. We definitely recommend Housen Law.
Recently I decided to revisit my will due to family changes and health issues. I decided to choose Housen Law knowing of Richard’s years of experience and his involvement in our community. I was pleased with the time Richard spent explaining the implications of each possible decisions re choosing executors and ensuring my beneficiaries are well looked after. I now understand the legal terminology much better and am confident that my will accurately reflects my wishes and will speak for me. – M.B.
Richard and his office have provided practical and reliable Real Estate and Estate law work to our family. If any problems occur Richard and his office are first to inform you, as their client, of the problem and their reasonable solution. We appreciate his honesty and informative advice.
Thank you Richard and Richet for your support, dedication, hard work and guidance throughout this difficult time. You guys are an amazing team. I am grateful to you both for being a powerful advocate for me throughout this difficult time and for ensuring the best possible outcome on my behalf. Thank you very much.