Separating Personal and Business Assets in Wills: How Dual Wills Can Help

If you’ve begun the process of planning your estate, you’ve no doubt discovered that getting your affairs in order involves far more details than most people tend to expect. This is especially true for those who hold significant investments or business shares, as well as those who have recently come into a large increase in assets or funds. If either of these circumstances applies to you, it’s vital to ensure that your current Will reflects all of your assets and holdings appropriately in order to best protect yourself, your loved ones, as well as any business partners you may have.

Dual wills, also known as restricted wills, can be a valuable way to streamline the allocation of your assets, while also saving your loved ones significant headaches upon your death. At Paperclip Law, we’re happy to partner with individuals throughout Vancouver, as well as Squamish, BC, to make estate planning easy and accessible. Below, we’ll discuss some of the basic information to know about dual wills and how they can help you protect your estate. Read on to learn more!

What is a Dual Will?

A dual will means that, as you may guess from the term itself, you have more than one will in place to handle the allocation of your finances and property upon your death. Under WESA (Wills, Estates and Succession Act), dual wills are an effective way of sufficiently separating your estate, especially business and personal assets, as needed. Having a dual will can help both your family and executor navigate your assets, all while minimizing probate fees and more.

What Does Probate Entail?

Probate refers to the legal process of vetting a will upon the death of the holder. Once you die, your will must be verified by the Supreme Court of BC in order to grant the named executor the authority to proceed with handling the estate. While every province may handle this process differently, in BC it’s worth noting that the court requires the estate to pay a 1.4% probate fee on the value of the assets, before it will issue the grant of probate.

What is the Role of a Restricted Will?

As we mentioned above, dual wills can be extremely effective when it comes to reducing probate fees and general confusion for the executor. For example, if you own significant shares in your business, you can have a will that deals with any assets that don’t require probate to get involved, and another that clearly outlines your directive for business assets that will require probate to occur (generally for assets in excess of $25,000). By having a dedicated split between personal and professional, you’ll save your family time and money as they grieve and give your executor the best chance to uphold your wishes on both sides.

Need Making Estate Planning Assistance in Vancouver?

Planning ahead shouldn’t be difficult. Paperclip Law is here to help clients throughout the Greater Vancouver and Squamish regions face the future with confidence. Learn more about dual wills by contacting our team today!