What happens if you pass away without a will? Well, if you were to die in Ontario without a will, you would have died intestate. In other words, you have died without specifying how your property should be distributed or divided. Of course, there are processes put in place by the Ontario Succession Law Reform Act to ensure that, in such cases, your property is still divided and distributed in a proper manner. However, expenses and delays generally follow such a process. That’s why it is always recommended to have a will to mitigate such issues.
That said, if you want to know more about what happens if you die without one, keep on reading:
What Happens to All My Assets If I Die in Intestate?
In Ontario, if you die without a will, your estate will be distributed according to the rules of intestate succession. This means that your assets will be distributed to your next of kin in a predetermined order.
The first people who will inherit your assets are your spouse or common-law partner and your children. If you are not married and do not have any children, your parents will inherit your assets. If your parents have passed away, your siblings will inherit your assets. If you do not have any surviving siblings, your grandparents will inherit your assets.
The rules of intestate succession can get complicated, so it is always best to consult with a lawyer to ensure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes.
Who Is Responsible for Administering an Ontario Estate without a Will?
The first step in administering an estate without a will is to determine who the deceased’s next of kin are. The next of kin are the people who are entitled to inherit the estate, and they are determined by blood relationship. The next of kin are the deceased’s spouse, children, parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, and so on.
Once the next of kin are determined, the estate is divided among them according to the rules of intestacy. The spouse is entitled to the first $200,000 of the estate, plus one-half of any balance. The children are entitled to the remainder of the estate, divided equally among them. If there are no children, the estate is divided between the deceased’s parents. If the parents are deceased, the estate is divided between the grandparents. This process continues until a next of kin is found.
Suppose there are no living next of kin. The estate escheats to the Crown. This means that the deceased’s property goes to the provincial government.
The process of administering an estate without a will can be complex, and it is advisable to seek professional legal advice to ensure that the estate is administered correctly.
Put simply, without a will, you may never know what will happen to your property should you pass away, let alone hope that your assets are distributed the way you want them to be. So, to save money and time and ensure that your loved ones can move on without too much worry, we highly recommend that you get one made. In addition, work with a lawyer to ensure your will is made right!
Ontario Wills offers quality legal advice from lawyers by video conference. If you are looking for will and estate lawyers in Kanata, work with us today!