Langley and Surrey Estates & Trusts Lawyers
At Taylor & Taylor Law, we assist clients in Langley, Surrey and the BC Lower Mainland in the areas of estate administration, probate and trust law. We also assist with estate litigation matters and court applications.
Estate Administration involves resolving the assets and liabilities of a deceased's estate. The individual appointed in the will to resolve the estate, known as the personal representative (or executor), may need to obtain a grant of probate from the BC Supreme Court establishing the validity of the will.
Often, financial and government institutions require a grant of probate before they will allow the executor to manage the affairs of the deceased. In most cases, estates greater than $25,000 in value will need to obtain a grant of probate, however, there are several exceptions.
Obtaining the grant of probate itself can be a time consuming and complex process, particularly if the estate is significant in value or contains a variety of different assets such as personal effects, bank accounts, investments, land, or life insurance (to name a few). In particular, the grant of probate can be significantly delayed if one or more beneficiaries contest the will or the proposed distribution of assets.
A consultation with a probate lawyer can help you to identify whether probate is required, and if so, how to successfully achieve a grant of probate in a timely fashion.
A trust is not a separate legal entity, but instead a relationship where property is legally owned by one party for the benefit of another. Trusts can be set up to exist either inter vivos (during life) or testamentary (after death). Often, but not always, trusts are created as part of a tax planning strategy determined by your accountant.
Trust can serve a variety of purposes. Trusts are an important planning tool used for estate planning, particularly when your estate involves blended families, family law matters or disabled children. Trusts can be drafted to set up specific funds for individuals or charities as part of your estate in life or after your death. Trusts can also be used to modify the distribution of assets to your beneficiaries outside of your will. Alter ego trusts can be created as part of a plan to reduce probate fees incurred to your estate as part of estate administration.
If you have questions about setting up a trust, you may wish to contact a trust law lawyer to discuss.