Manitoba Estate Law
Wills & Power of Attorney in Winnipeg
Your Family matters
At Visionary Law Corporation, we understand that planning for the future can be both a sensitive and daunting task. That’s why our dedicated team of compassionate legal professionals specializes in Wills and power of attorney matters, helping you navigate the intricacies of Canadian and Manitoba laws with ease.
We believe that everyone deserves peace of mind when it comes to protecting their assets and ensuring their loved ones are cared for. With our expertise and deep knowledge of local regulations, we are committed to providing personalized solutions tailored to your unique circumstances.
Whether you need assistance in drafting a comprehensive Will or appointing a trusted representative through a power of attorney, our firm is here to guide you every step of the way. Let us help you secure a stable and empowered future for yourself and your family. Contact us today for a consultation, and take the first step towards safeguarding what matters most.
Creating Your Will
No one wants to contemplate their own mortality. However, by creating a sound estate plan, you can ensure your loved ones are taken care of when after you have passed. At Visionary Law, we are proud to help families throughout Winnipeg and the surrounding areas to create lasting legacies.
We recognize that you may be intimidated or overwhelmed by the estate planning process. We will walk you through the steps, answer any questions you have, and assist you in creating a sound plan so that you can rest easy knowing your family is protected if anything happens to you.
Understanding wills in Manitoba
Simply put, a will is a document that provides instruction for how your property and estate should be distributed after your death. A common misbelief is that you do not need a will –however
if you die without a will, your assets will be distributed based on intestacy
laws, not your wishes.
A skilled estate planning lawyer at our firm can sit down with you and help you draft a document that specifies how your estate should be distributed. We can ensure that your will reflects your wishes. Further, we can help you update your will every time a major life event occurs such as a marriage, divorce, birth or death in the family, or the acquiring of a substantial sum of money.
What is Included in a Will in Manitoba?
In Manitoba, a will is a legal document that allows an individual (referred to as the “testator” or “testatrix”) to outline their wishes regarding the distribution of their assets and the appointment of an executor to administer their estate after their death.
When creating a will in Manitoba, there are several key components to consider:
The testator must have the mental capacity to understand the nature and consequences of making a will. This includes being aware of the nature and extent of their property, understanding who may have a claim on their estate, and being able to make rational decisions.
The testator should name an executor in their will, who will be responsible for carrying out the instructions outlined in the will and administering the estate. It is important to choose a trustworthy and capable person or a professional executor, such as a lawyer or trust company, who is willing to take on this role.
The testator can specify how their estate should be distributed among beneficiaries, who can be individuals, organizations, or even charities. It is essential to clearly identify beneficiaries by their full names and include alternative or contingent beneficiaries in case the primary beneficiaries are unable to inherit.
Specific Gifts and Residual Estate
The testator can make specific bequests, where particular assets or properties are left to specific individuals or organizations. The remaining assets not specifically mentioned are referred to as the residual estate, and the testator can determine how it will be distributed among the beneficiaries.
Guardianship of Minor Children
If the testator has minor children, they can use their will to appoint a guardian who will assume responsibility for the care and upbringing of the children in the event of their death.
Signatures and Witnesses
A will in Manitoba must be in writing, signed by the testator, and witnessed by two individuals who are present at the same time. The witnesses must also sign the will, and they should be individuals who are not beneficiaries or spouses/common-law partners of beneficiaries named in the will to ensure impartiality.
It’s important to keep the original signed and witnessed will in a safe and accessible place. Informing the executor and loved ones about the will’s existence and its location is crucial to ensure its proper execution after the testator’s passing.
While these are general guidelines for creating a will in Manitoba, it’s advisable to seek professional advice from a lawyer experienced in estate planning and Manitoba’s specific laws. They can provide personalized guidance, ensure compliance with legal requirements, and help you create a comprehensive and valid will that reflects your wishes and protects your loved ones.
Power of Attorney Lawyers in Manitoba
A Power of Attorney gives your family the tools they need to help you during your lifetime when you are no longer able to help yourself. Executing a well drawn Power of Attorney before it is needed avoids the need for the Public Trustee or costly Committeeship Applications and ensures your family can manage your affairs on your behalf.
What is a Power of Attorney in Manitoba?
In Manitoba, a power of attorney (POA) is a legal document that allows an individual (the “donor” or “grantor”) to grant authority to another person (the “attorney” or “agent”) to make decisions and act on their behalf in matters related to property and personal care.
Under Manitoba’s laws, there are two types of powers of attorney: a power of attorney for property and a power of attorney for personal care. A power of attorney for property gives the attorney the authority to make decisions about the donor’s financial affairs, such as managing bank accounts, paying bills, and selling or buying property. On the other hand, a power of attorney for personal care grants the attorney the power to make decisions about the donor’s healthcare and personal well-being, including medical treatments, living arrangements, and other personal care matters.
How do You Create a Valid Power of Attorney?
To create a valid power of attorney in Manitoba, certain requirements must be met. The donor must have the mental capacity to understand the nature and consequences of granting the power of attorney. The document must be in writing, signed by the donor in the presence of two witnesses, who must also sign the document. Additionally, one of the witnesses must be someone who is not a relative or spouse of the donor, nor someone named as an attorney in the document.
It’s important to note that a power of attorney in Manitoba ceases to be valid upon the donor’s incapacity, unless it is an “enduring” power of attorney. An enduring power of attorney remains in effect even if the donor becomes incapacitated, allowing the attorney to continue acting on their behalf.
If a person becomes incapacitated without having a power of attorney in place, Manitoba’s laws provide for the appointment of a “committee” by the court to handle the person’s property and personal care matters. The committee is similar to a guardian or trustee and is responsible for making decisions in the best interest of the incapacitated person.
Consulting a qualified legal professional who specializes in Manitoba law is crucial when creating a power of attorney to ensure compliance with all legal requirements and to tailor the document to your specific needs and circumstances.
Health Care Directives
A Health Care Directive, or Living Will, gives you the comfort of knowing that your loved ones will be making sensitive health care decisions on your behalf when you are unable to do so. Clearly setting out who should be making these decisions will avoid family disagreements and delays in treatment at a time when you need timely and important decisions to be made regarding your health.
We Can Help
When you work with our will and power of attorney lawyer in Manitoba, you can expect attentive, personalized service at every step in the legal process. Whether it’s planning for your family’s future or executing a loved one’s will, our professionals are ready to help.
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