We get it, the thought of sitting down to craft a will isn’t exactly a walk in the park. But when it comes to safeguarding the future of your loved ones and your hard-earned assets, it’s absolutely worth it.
Allow us to guide you through the steps to creating a will in Manitoba – we promise, it’s less complicated than you think!
Step 1: Get Started (Don’t worry, we’re here with you!)
First things first, take a deep breath. Understand that you’re taking a crucial step towards ensuring security for your loved ones. Now grab a pen, some paper, and let’s gather a list mentioning all your assets (like your house, car, savings, investments) and personal items of real or sentimental value (items of jewellery, art, or even your well-cared-for houseplants!). We’ll send you an intake form to start thinking about these things, if you’d like.
Step 2: Choose the Beneficiaries
Next, think about who you want to pass these assets onto. These folks are known as your beneficiaries. They can be anyone you wish – your kids, other family members, friends, even a good cause that you feel deeply about.
Step 3: Name Your Executor
Now, choose a trusty person to carry out the terms of your will. This is your executor, (kind of like that reliable friend you’d nominate to water your plants while you’re away). This should ideally be someone you trust, who’s organized and impartial. See our hints on choosing an executor, here.
Step 4: Guardianship Decisions
If you have children under 18, it’s crucial to think about who you’d like to take on guardianship duties should something happen to you. If you have kids this is likely the main reason you’re making a will, so this decision needs careful thought and plenty of discussions with potential guardians.
Step 5: Create the Will
Ready to get going? Great! We’ll meet with you to take instructions from you regarding what you might want in your will. We’ll have lots of questions for you, but if you’ve done a little light prep work we won’t be asking anything that you won’t already know the answer to. It’s a conversation, not a quiz!
Step 6: Sign and Witness
In order for a will to be legally valid in Canada, it must be signed in the presence of two adult witnesses, who aren’t beneficiaries or the spouse of a beneficiary. Typically that’s two people from our office who are there to make sure that the witnessing complies with the law around wills.
Step 7: Keep it Safe
Lastly, we’ll send you home with your will. Find a safe and secure place to store your will where your executor can access it when needed. Make sure to tell your executor where you’ve kept it. This is often just a secure spot in your house.
And voila! You’ve successfully crafted a will. Remember, setting up a solid will is all about making things as easy as possible for your family and friends – let us help make that process a little easier for you.