Are you worried about what will happen to your estate or your children after your death?
Many people put off writing their will - and for various reasons. Some prefer not to think about their ultimate fate, while others worry more about the legal costs.
Yet should the worst come to pass, the cost of not having a will can be severe.
Keep reading to find out when you need wills lawyers in Calgary to make your will.
What a Lawyer Does in Will Preparation
Wills lawyers play a pivotal role in the will-writing process.
Fundamentally, they bring extensive knowledge and expertise to the table and help you navigate the intricate world of estate planning.
Is There a Legal Requirement to Have a Will?
It isn't advisable, but you can go through life without ever writing a will.
Without one, you lose control over who gets your property after your death. Instead, the government steps in (according to Alberta's Wills and Succession Act) and decides for you - which may not align with your desires.
If you have underage children, a will is crucial for determining their guardianship should anything happen to you. Without one, the courts will decide, which may not align with your preferences.
Put simply, having a will helps avoid conflicts and disagreements among your loved ones after your demise.
Is a Lawyer Necessary?
You are not obligated to hire a lawyer for your will preparation.
However, writing a will without a lawyer is complex and can run you into legal difficulties that won't be apparent until it's too late, and will avoid mistakes that can make the entire will or a specific gift void.
First and foremost, a wills lawyer Calgary can explain the legal jargon that comes with wills and estate planning. They can guide you through the process, ensuring you are comfortable with the decisions you make.
Moreover, they provide invaluable advice in complex situations. Handling substantial assets, setting up trusts, and dealing with tax implications are all a part of their service packages.
Hiring a lawyer in these circumstances becomes a crucial matter.
When You Should Hire a Lawyer
In some situations, hiring a lawyer for your will preparation is virtually non-negotiable.
If you have substantial assets, a complex family situation, or estranged relatives, a lawyer's expertise is critical. Likewise, succession planning can be complicated if you own a business. A lawyer can guide you through the process and ensure your business is taken care of according to your wishes.
Finally, a lawyer's help is indispensable if you want to set up a trust.
This is particularly true if your trust has complex requirements, such as a special needs or generation-skipping trust. Such trusts come with specific, nuanced legal and tax implications that need an expert's touch.
Finding Wills Lawyers in Calgary
How do you find reliable wills lawyers in Calgary?
A good place to start is by asking for recommendations from friends and family members. There's a fair chance that many of them will have already taken care of their wills - and they might have had a good experience with a lawyer they can point you towards.
Don't hesitate to interview potential lawyers.
Remember, they're taking care of matters of great importance to your estate - so ask about their experience, fees, and how their expertise applies to your situation.
This will help you gauge their suitability and choose the best lawyer for your needs.
Find Top Wills Lawyers in Calgary
While there's no legal requirement to hire a lawyer for making a will, their expertise can prove invaluable.
They ensure your will is valid, provide advice on complex situations, and save you and your family from potential legal complications down the line.
First West Law LLP employs some of the best wills lawyers in Calgary. From will drafting to probate, adult guardianship, and trust agreements, we return the power of your estate back to you. Request a consultation here.