Estate planning is everybody s issue. If you don t plan for what happens to your money, your children, your house and other assets upon your death, the government will make those decisions for you. In these turbulent financial times, planning for the future is more important than ever, especially when it involves the financial security of those you love.
Completely revised and updated in its fifth edition, this national bestseller continues to be the definitive resource on the financial, legal and human issues around estate planning.
- Covers all areas of estate planning: financial and tax planning, wills and powers of attorney, life insurance, guardianship of your children, trusts and living wills, and funeral planning, as well as new information on current legislation and emerging trends such as estate mediation, and much more.
- Prepares you for dealing with your financial adviser or lawyer and may even help you to save hundreds of dollars in professional fees and taxes.
- Features practical examples, tips, and question–and–answer boxes.
The Estate Planning Checklist.
Chapter 1: What is Estate Planning?
Building Your Estate Plan.
When Should You Prepare an Estate Plan?
Is It Worth Preparing an Estate Plan?
The Six D s of Estate Planning.
The Modern Estate Plan.
Chapter 2: Dying Intestate: Distributing Your Estate without a Will.
Who Gets What.
Delays in the Distribution of Your Estate.
Higher Cost of Administering Your Estate.
Additional Income Taxes Payable.
Lost Investment Opportunities.
Appointment of Guardians.
Underage Benefi ciaries.
No Provision for Joint Disaster.
Chapter 3: Distributing Your Estate with a Will.
Who Gets What.
Reducing the Cost to Die.
Making the Gift More Tax–Effective.
What is Fair?
Chapter 4: The Format of a Will.
Handwritten, Software–Based or Formal Wills.
Keeping Your Will Up to Date.
Chapter 5: Giving Away Your Estate Now.
Advantages and Disadvantages to Gifting While Alive.
Giving Away Personal Possessions.
Giving to Your Adult Children.
Gifts to Young Children.
Chapter 6: Probate.
Provincial Probate Taxes and Fees.
Strategies for Reducing Probate Tax.
Chapter 7: Power of Attorney for Finances.
Offi ce of the Provincial Guardian and Trustee.
What Might Be in Your Power of Attorney for Finances.
Preparing a Power of Attorney for Finances.
Chapter 8: Death and Taxes.
Transfers to a Spouse or Partner.
Assets Not Left to a Spouse (not including your RRSP/RRIF).
Tax Implications When Making Bequests in Your Will.
Capital Gains and Losses.
Registered Plans: RRSPs and RRIFs.
U.S. Estate Taxes.
Chapter 9: Filing the Final Income Tax Returns.
Due Dates Or Should I Say Deadlines?.
Tax Returns for the Estate and Testamentary Trust.
Chapter 10: Family Law and Your Estate Plan.
Support and Maintenance.
Marriage and Remarriage.
Family Law for Ontario Residents.
Chapter 11: Life Insurance.
Common Uses for Insurance in Estate Planning.
Buying Life Insurance.
Life Insurance Worksheet.
Too Much or Too Little?
Purchasing Life Insurance.
Naming a Benefi ciary.
Life Insurance Premiums versus Income Tax.
Joint Life Insurance Policies.
Living Benefi ts.
Chapter 12: Trusts.
The Trust Agreement.
Inter Vivos Trusts.
Trusts and Taxes.
Costs for Establishing and Maintaining a Trust.
Dealing with the Family Cottage.
Chapter 13: Business Succession Planning.
Is Your Business Highly Dependent on You?
Selling the Business.
Keeping it in the Family.
Needs of Business Partners/Shareholders.
If Your Business is a Farm.
Chapter 14: Gift Planning.
Maximizing the Tax Benefi ts of Gift Planning.
Ways to Make Planned Gifts.
Gifts through Life Insurance.
Gifts to Foundations.
Gifts to Government.
Other Types of Gifts.
The Process of Gift Planning.
Chapter 15: Documents Concerning Health Care.
Power of Attorney for Health or Personal Care.
Considerations When Preparing Power of Attorney for Personal Care.
Chapter 16: The Final Gift.
Organ and Tissue Donations.
Donating Your Body for Medical Research.
Chapter 17: Planning Your Funeral.
Executor s Responsibility.
Chapter 18: You Can t Take it with You.
Steps in Developing Your Estate Plan.
Getting Organized and Keeping Records.
Working with Professionals.
Chapter 19: It s an Ongoing Process.
Moving through the Stages of Life.
The Six D s Revisited.
Talking with Your Family.
Now Do It!
Appendix 1: List of Duties for an Executor or Estate Trustee.
Appendix 2: List of Duties for Your Representative When Making Financial Decisions.
Appendix 3: List of Duties for Your Representative When Making Personal and Health Care Decisions.
About the Author.