Wills & Power of Attorneys
What is a will and why should I have one?
A Will is a legal document stating what you would like to happen when you die. While you are still alive it has no effect. Surveys suggest that a majority (over 55%) of Canadian adults do not have signed, legally binding Wills.
Dying without a Will can have serious consequences for your family. Once you are dead you cannot decide who will manage the assets you have left behind and a court may decide for you. You will not be able to appoint a guardian for any minor children, and a court may decide for you. You will not be able to choose your beneficiaries (the people who inherit your money, real estate and possessions) and the disposition of your estate will follow standard rules created by the government, which might not be what you would have chosen!
Have a read of 6 Reasons You Need a Will for a more detailed account of why you should have a Will.
Creating a Will with Axess Law is a surprisingly easy process. For a low fee and a small investment of your time, you can ensure that your wishes are made clear and your assets are protected from interference. We bring you the peace of mind and security that only comes from knowing your intentions have been set out in a legally binding Will.
How do I create a Will with Axess Law?
Your appointment includes a full consultation with one of our lawyers, and will be printed, signed and witnessed ready for you to take home at the end of the hour. Our requirements are straightforward and few in number:
- We need 2 pieces of identification, one of which must be a government issued photo ID*
- You also need to know the full legal names and the location (city and province) of anyone you would like to name in the Will as a guardian of any minor children, as an executor or as a beneficiary
- You should have a clear idea of how you would like to distribute your assets when the Will takes effect, although you will also be able to discuss this with your lawyer
That’s it! Our flat fee includes everything you need; there are no hidden costs or extra fees whatsoever. Working with a trained lawyer ensures that nothing will be missed that might otherwise lead to unintended consequences. We offer you an affordable price, full consultation with a qualified professional, and offices and opening hours that are designed to work with your schedule.
Call us today or pop into one of our convenient Greater Toronto Area Walmart store-based locations. We’re open 7 days a week, from 10am until 8pm Monday to Friday, 6pm on Saturday’s and 5pm on Sunday’s.
* If you do not have a valid form of photo identification, we recommend obtaining the Ontario Photo Card, which you can apply for at any Service Ontario centre. For more information, please visit Ontario Photo Card on ontario.ca
A Power of Attorney is a written authorization which grants power to another person to make decisions on your behalf. It is in effect while you are still alive, unlike a will, which only takes effect upon your death.
There are three kinds of Power of Attorney in Ontario, which cover two areas; Property and Personal Care.
Power of Attorney for Property
- A Continuing Power of Attorney for Property covers your financial affairs and allows the person you name to act for you in all circumstances, including where you are mentally incapable.
- A Non-Continuing Power of Attorney for Property covers your financial affairs but can’t be used if you become mentally incapable. People often use this when they will be away from their home country for a long time and need another person to handle their affairs.
Power of Attorney for Personal Care
A Power of Attorney for Personal Care covers your personal non-financial decisions. These are usually healthcare related, but could also cover your housing and other personal matters.
Is a Power of Attorney the same as a “Living Will”?
No. A Power of Attorney is a legal document which must be written in a certain way, and gives another person the power to act on your behalf. A “living will” or “advance directive” is a document which expresses your wishes in the event of certain situations occurring, for example, where you are being kept alive by artificial life support. It does not need to be written in a particular way or name any person. If you have named an Attorney in a Power of Attorney document, that person is obliged to follow your wishes as expressed in your “living will” if it is possible for them to do so. Even if they are not written down, your Attorney must try to follow your wishes if you made them aware when you were capable.
Why do I need to name a Power of Attorney?
If you don’t make a Power of Attorney while you are capable of doing so and subsequently become unable to manage your own affairs, a family member has the right to apply to make your health care decisions or become your “guardian” of property. This might not be the person you would have wanted, and the process may be long, complicated and expensive. Where no family member or friend is able and willing to act for you, the government will act to appoint a suitable person.
Creating Power of Attorney documents with Axess Law is effective and inexpensive. You will have a full consultation with one of our lawyers, during which you will be able to ask questions and receive comprehensive advice. Power of Attorney is a serious matter which we do not take lightly; we ensure that it is the right decision for you.
Power of Attorney for Property and Power of Attorney for Personal Care each cost just $59. If you would like both we offer a package price of $79.