Estate Planning

David Tremblett - Oct 26, 2022


Getting started

Knowing where to start is often the hardest part of estate planning. To help you get organized, your BMO financial professional will supply you with a questionnaire that asks about your family; how much income your dependents need; if you have special bequests or obligations; and so on.
The questionnaire also provides a framework for recording assets and liabilities, indicating how they are registered and whether your spouse or another beneficiary will inherit.
Completing the questionnaire enables you to clarify ownership status, prioritize your estate objectives and provide your BMO financial professional with the necessary information to prepare your estate analysis.

Your personal estate analysis

Your estate analysis will provide important insight as to what would happen if you or your spouse were to die, such as:

  • your net worth at death;

  • assets to be distributed and estate shortfalls with respect to taxes and expenses;

  • probate, legal and executor (in Quebec, “liquidator”) costs that may be incurred before the estate is distributed;

  • an estimate of the Canadian income tax payable when the final tax return is filed; and

  • future assets and income of the surviving spouse; needs of dependent children or other dependent family members.

This comprehensive assessment of key estate planning issues will help determine whether your current estate plan requires further thought and, possibly, a discussion with other estate planning professionals (e.g. insurance advisor, estate lawyer).

Organize your information for your executor and attorney

Ensure that your attorney under a Power of Attorney for Property and your executor, know where to locate your Will, marriage certificate, life insurance policy(ies) and safety deposit box. Along with your estate analysis, your BMO financial professional will provide you with a tool that your executor will find invaluable – the Estate Information Organizer – which documents information such as:

  • your current sources of income;

  • your employer, and employee programs in which you participate;

  • your personal and professional contacts, club memberships and credit cards; and

  • the names of, and contact information for your financial advisors.

When complete, the Estate Information Organizer will assist your executor in the efficient administration of your estate by ensuring that nothing is overlooked. Your Power of Attorney or, in Quebec, your Mandatory will also find the Estate Information Organizer useful if you become incapacitated.

For more information, speak with your BMO financial professional.