What Happens To My Estate If I Don’t Have A Will?

Intestacy is dying without a Last Will and Testament. Have you considered what would happen if you died intestate? What would happen to your estate?

Intestacy usually operates as follows (this varies by province or territory):

  • Everything passes on to the spouse and/or children
  • If the deceased had no children, everything passes on to the parents
  • In the event the parents have passed away, everything passes on to the siblings of the deceased
  • In the event no one is left, the government may acquire the remaining assets and estate

You can see where this issue grows complex especially if you have a common-in-law spouse, step parents, siblings and so on. How will a person’s estate and assets be divided up by the courts if you do not have a Will? Even if you believe that your estate and assets are too small to be worth something, the chances are that you at least own some property such as a house, car or have some money in the bank.

Putting a Will in place ensures that your assets and estate go to the people you would prefer.  With a Will you can also make charitable donations and leave things to close friends.  Moreover, what about the pressing issue of a Guardian? Who will raise and look after your children if you are not there?  Importantly, a Will allows you to name the precise people you would trust with being Guardians for your children.

If you still assume everything is going to be fine after you die intestate, the courts still have to step in and administer where all of your stuff goes. That costs money, which will come out of what is left of your estate.   Dealing with an estate where there is no Will is more expensive in terms of legal costs, more complicated, and time-consuming.  

Don’t let your Estate get caught up in expensive, complicated, and lengthy court hearings by not completing your Last Will and Testament.