Toronto estate planning lawyer Seher Goderya says that a will can be a very important document for a young couple, particularly when young children are involved. Parents should create their wills to ensure the future protection of their children.
Goderya, associate with Basman Smith LLP, says that where neither parent is alive to take care of their young children, a will can give appointed family members or friends the proper legal authority to manage the family’s property and finances for the benefit of those children.
She says that because it’s fairly standard for couples to share income, own joint assets and pay for each other’s expenses, it makes sense for both parents to create their wills at the same time within the same estate plan. In particular, it is common for each parent to leave their assets to the other and select a trusted individual or individuals to act in their absence.
“The first and most important issue is to select an appropriate executor,” she tells AdvocateDaily.com. “An executor can be a family member or a friend, and generally is someone that you trust to carry out your wishes and your instructions as outlined in the will.”
Goderya says that if no such executor is selected, there may be a situation created where no one is willing to step up to the responsibility of handling the finances, which can cause confusion and create even more problems. Naming the executor in the will allows them to obtain access to the family’s bank accounts, investments and real estate property (subject to probate requirements).
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