Estate Planning for Blended Families

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In today’s family, it is not unusual for spouses to enter a marriage with children from previous relationships. Parents work hard at getting these children to functionally blend together to create a happy family environment. Often overlooked is what happens on the death of one of the parents. In most cases, special consideration for estate planning is needed to avoid relationship loss and possibly legal action. Typically spouses leave everything to each other and when the surviving spouse dies, the remainder is divided amongst the children. The problem? Even with the best of intentions, there is no guarantee that the surviving spouse will not remarry and inadvertently disinherit the deceased’s children.

Estate Planning for Business Owners

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What happens when the children grow up and they are no longer dependent on their parents? What happens to your other "baby"- the business? Estate planning for business owners deals with the personal and business assets.

Having Your Cake and Eating it Too

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Investing in an uncertain stock market is not for the faint of heart. However, fortunately for Canadians, Segregated Fund products offered by many life insurance companies provide a safety net for nervous investors. Fund products present some interesting opportunities for people looking to get more security in their investment portfolios without sacrificing their potential for growth.

Pay Attention to your Beneficiary

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Naming a beneficiary is a valuable feature of life insurance and segregated funds policies so it is important to carefully choose your beneficiaries.

How To Protect Your Estate

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You have spent your life working hard and accumulating wealth for you and your family to enjoy. While you are living you pay taxes annually on both your earned and investment income. But did you know that your assets may also result in a tax liability upon your death or the death of your spouse? In Canada, a taxpayer is deemed to dispose of all of his or her assets at death. If the value of these assets exceeds their cost, then, without proper planning, taxes could be payable. But the good news is, it might be possible to reduce or at least delay the payment of this tax by organizing or re-allocating certain assets that would result in a tax liability at your death. There is also a way to cost-effectively accumulate tax-free funds to pay all or part of any taxes that may become due upon your death. Of course, every situation is different, so you should consult with a financial advisor before making any big decisions. Below is a simple guide that will help you structure your estate in the most tax-advantageous method.

Have You Overlooked Assets in Your Estate Planning?

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Digital assets are essentially anything that has inherent worth that is also in digital form. What establishes their status as an asset is the fact that they come with a “right to use” (e.g. a password). Without a right to use, they are just considered data. Digital assets could include family photos, air miles, hotel rewards, grocery store points, and especially cryptocurrency.

All in the Family: Estate Planning for Farmers

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Many farmers find it difficult to get any interest from their children in continuing to run the farm business – which can cause some complications when developing the best estate plan for farmers looking to retire. In general, farmers are in an interesting position: they are asset rich due to the increased value of their land but struggle with the increasing costs related to their farming activities. However, if the farm holds significant value but the children are not interested in working the land, what is a farmer to do?

Impact of Recent Events On Your Estate Plan

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A year ago, the projected deficit for 2020 was estimated to be $20 billion. Shockingly, as a result of Covid-19, this projection has risen to over $380 billion by the end of the year. So, what does that mean for tax rates and how will this affect your estate plan?

Business Owners: 2020 Tax Planning Tips for the End of the Year

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It's a great time to review your business finances now that we are nearing year-end. We have listed some of the critical areas to consider and provide you with some helpful guidelines to make sure that you cover all the essentials. We have divided our tax planning tips into four sections: - Year-end tax checklist - Remuneration - Business tax - Estate

How Many Wills Do I Need?

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It is important to have a valid Will to avoid the challenges of intestacy – dying without a Will. Indeed, eventually, everyone ends up with a Will of one sort or other, either the deceased gets to decide how assets are distributed by writing one before death or the provincial authorities get to decide based on intestacy rules. So, it’s always best to get a Will written in advance. The question is, do you need more than one? Getting one Will is trouble enough, so why would anyone want to have two?