David G. Tremblett

Trust and Estate Consultant

Tel: 416-359-5245


BMO Private Wealth
BMO Trust Company
100 King Street West
39th Floor
Toronto, ON
M5X 1A1

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Will and Estate Planning

Pros and Cons of Owning Property: Joint Tenants with Right of Survivorship

Couples commonly hold property as Joint Tenants with Right of Survivorship (“JTWROS”).* In certain circumstances, there are several benefits to this ownership structure, including: • Each spouse has the ability to manage the property without written consent of the other; • Upon the first death, the surviving spouse automatically owns 100% of the property that was held JTWROS; and • Probate tax is payable on the value of the property only once (i.e., at the time of the second death of the joint tenants)

Estate Planning for Beneficiaries with Disabilities

Preparing your estate plan to accommodate the needs of a beneficiary with a disability, requires a thoughtful approach to ensure they will be properly accommodated and supported upon your death. Above all, it is important to consider the individual situation of the beneficiary(ies)

Why Pets Belong in your Estate Plan

Pet owners generally view their pet as a faithful companion and a member of the family. But have you considered what will happen if your pet outlives you? Without proper planning, your pet may face an uncertain fate

Death of a Spouse or Common-law Partner

The death of your spouse or common-law partner is a very difficult and emotional time. You may be overwhelmed with grief over losing your partner, as well as trying to understand what your rights and obligations are as the surviving spouse. On top of all of that, your spouse likely named you as the executor of their estate and you may not be familiar with the responsibilities and tasks involved in administering an estate.

A Look at Recent Changes to Ontario Estate Law

If making changes to your estate plan is on your “to-do list,” it is important to be aware of several amendments that were introduced as of January 1, 2022 to estate legislation in Ontario. The Ontario government recently passed the Accelerating Access to Justice Act (“Bill 245”) which includes changes to the way Wills are interpreted and how your Will can now survive you after saying “I Do” at the altar.

Wills That Work

Estate planning is an essential component of a successful wealth management program. A good estate plan will provide you with the peace of mind that comes from knowing your family will be taken care of, and your financial affairs will be in order and administered according to your wishes. An important key element of any estate plan is a Will.

Estate Complexity – Agent for Executor Tool

Agent for Executor services are offered through BMO Trust Company and can assist an executor with their estate administration responsibilities In many cases the executor may not have the time or expertise to manage the estate administration. By answering the questions below about the executor, beneficiaries and estate assets and ‘scoring’ the answers, it will help you to determine whether the executor could benefit from Agent for Executor services. The Will is a good source of information to assist with answering some of these questions.

Support for Executors

Organizing a loved one or close friend’s life is not a simple task. Understanding that grief can make even the simplest things seem difficult, BMO Trust Company can assist you with the duties and financial tasks that are required of the Executor. We have the resources and expertise to help ease the worry during this time.

Estate Planning

You have devoted yourself to providing for your family and saving for a comfortable retirement, but have you also planned for what would happen if you were no longer around to take care of things? While there are a number of legitimate reasons for avoiding the issue – ranging from “I don’t have time” to “it’s depressing” – estate planning is too important to ignore.

Designating Beneficiaries- Tax Free Savings Account

Introduced in 2009, a Tax-Free Savings Account (“TFSA”) is a registered account in which Canadians aged 18 or over may save and invest tax-free within defined contribution limits. While annual contributions to a TFSA are capped, unused contribution room can be carried forward indefinitely. Income earned on contributions, including interest and capital gains, is not taxable and the account holder (“holder”) may withdraw funds from the account at any time without restrictions or tax consequences. However, unlike Registered Retirement Saving Plans (“RRSP”), contributions to the account are not tax-deductible.

Incapacity Planning in a Mobile World

The pandemic notwithstanding, our population is getting older and travelling more than ever before. Whether you travel for work, own property in another jurisdiction, or are considering a move away from your home province or territory, specialized planning will help ensure that your assets, as well as personal and health care decision making, are properly managed should you become incapable of making decisions while outside your home province or territory.

Human Reproductive Technology: The Great Uncertainty for Estates

For certain, there have been many advantages gained through the advances in technology, and reproductive science is no exception. Countless wishful parents have fulfilled their dream of a family using assisted reproduction. Louise Joy Brown, the world’s first test tube baby was born in 1978, and it is estimated another eight million babies, like her, have been born since. However, reproductive technology has also created some challenges in the world of estate planning and administration.

What Happens When a Canadian Resident Dies?

At the time of death, how will the estate of a Canadian resident be distributed? Also, what are the tax consequences and requirements on a Canadian resident’s assets immediately prior to death? This publication provides an overview of the implications from a tax and estate perspective and outlines the tax treatment and estate consequences of assets owned by a deceased Canadian resident.

Estate Planning For Your Worldwide Assets

More and more Canadians own assets in multiple provinces and countries. Whether you have a family property, vacation villa or securities in a local business overseas, specialized estate planning is necessary to ensure ease of administration of these assets on your death.

Executor's Task List

Executors are responsible for a variety of tasks ranging from funeral arrangements to filing income tax returns with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), to the final distribution of estate assets. If you are appointed Executor, our Task List will provide you with some guidance by describing the types of duties you will be required to perform.

Planning for Incapacity with a Protection Mandate

Laying out your wishes should you become incapacitated can enhance your quality of life and make things easier for your loved ones should the time come. This article explains a protection mandate and its benefits, and is intended for Quebec residents only.

Appointing a corporate executor

Achieving your personal and financial goals takes careful planning and expertise. One element of your wealth management strategy should be your estate plan.

Designating Beneficiaries: Life Insurance Policies and Registered Plans

Naming an individual, a charity, a trust, or a corporation to receive the death benefit of your life insurance policy (“Policy” or “Policies”) or the funds in your registered plans (“Plan” or “Plans”) at death, is called designating a beneficiary. This type of beneficiary designation is different from making a gift in your Will to a named beneficiary or to a specified class of beneficiaries.

Estate Planning and Dependant’s Relief Claims

Canadians generally enjoy testamentary freedom, meaning that a person may freely decide who will inherit their estate. However, provision must be made for persons who are financially dependent on the deceased. Failure to include such persons in the estate plan may lead to a successful claim against the estate and may disrupt sophisticated planning strategies.

Top 10 reasons to consider a corporate executor

Choosing the right Executor is a very important step in the estate planning process.

“Stress Testing” Your Estate Plan in a Time of Crisis – With Additional Special Considerations for Business Owners

A crisis can be a catalyst for action if you don’t have an estate plan – or even a Will.

Some ramifications of appointing an executor who is a non-resident of Canada

After you pass away, the executor will have the task of administering your estate. Examples of what that role entails include taking an inventory of and securing your assets, making investment decisions, filing tax returns and following the instructions that you have set out in your Will. In other words, your executor will be the person who controls and manages the assets that you leave behind upon death, and who will have the legal obligation of carrying out your estate plan.

The Consequences of Dying Without a Will

It is estimated that one third of Canadians do not have a Will, and many others have Wills that are inadequate to give effect to current wishes and intentions, because their assets or family situation has changed since the Will was drawn up. This article provides information on the risks and consequences of dying without a Will

The Mighty Power of Attorney for Property

A comprehensive estate plan addresses important issues related to your property that impact you and your family throughout your lifetime, as well as after your death. Such comprehensive planning includes addressing your potential incapacity during your lifetime. The granting of authority to someone else to manage all of your financial affairs, and property worldwide, while you are unable to make decisions regarding the management of your property and financial affairs, is critical related to your property and financial affairs.

Estate Information Organizer

The BMO Wealth Management Estate Information Organizer is designed to help your family, executor (referred to as a “liquidator” in Quebec), or Power of Attorney for Property (referred to as a “mandatory” in Quebec) locate all of your important documents and other information needed to administer your estate or act as your Power of Attorney for Property. Using this resource, you can specify where documents or accounts are located, identify appropriate contacts and provide security access details for your online accounts. The Estate Information Organizer can be invaluable in helping to ensure that nothing is overlooked in the administration of your estate.

Estate Planning for Unique Assets

Whenever interesting, unusual and unique assets pass from one generation to the next on death, special care may be required to manage that process. An executor may need to verify the precise nature of a certain estate asset and prevent it from harm, while preserving its value for the beneficiaries. Ascertaining a special item’s value can be a journey in itself, as can determining how to dispose of, or transfer a unique asset legally and safely. Some thoughtful preplanning for special items and preparations for your executor will pave the way for a smooth estate administration and transfer of the asset.

Planning for Gifts to Adult Children

Parents are often interested in making substantial gifts to their adult children to give them a good start in life, to mark a significant occasion or simply to enjoy seeing their children benefit from their accumulated wealth. However, you should plan in advance to ensure any gift does not suffer unintended consequences.

Granting Power of Attorney

While a Will ensures that your assets are dealt with according to your wishes at death, only a Continuing (or Enduring) Power of Attorney for property can provide for the proper management of your property and financial affairs during your lifetime, should you become mentally incapable or have to be absent for an extended period of time. Accordingly, a Power of Attorney is an important part of a complete financial plan.

Estate & Succession Planning

Trustee Services

A trust is an arrangement where money or property is managed by one person for the benefit of another.

Life Insurance Trusts: The Whys and Whens

A life insurance policy offers a simple solution to some complex estate planning issues, by creating a pool of funds available to the beneficiaries of the policy shortly after the death of the policyholder. A life insurance trust is a lesser known, but sophisticated wealth management tool that can amplify and diversify the benefits of a life insurance policy on the death of the insured.

Estate Planning For Spouses and Children Using Testamentary Trusts

A testamentary trust provides a means of transferring and holding property under the terms of your Will. When structured properly, it can provide protection from creditors, guide the management and use of your wealth after death, and serve as a strategy to minimize or defer various taxes.

Days of Wine and Roses … and Prenups

For recently engaged couples the future looks promising, filled with wedded bliss and happily-ever-after. However, in love and marriage, the law giveth and the law taketh away. This article discusses how a prenuptial agreement (also referred to as a marriage contract) can help protect your assets from being “taken” in the event of a divorce.

An Ounce of Prevention Keep Your Business Agreements Current to Ease Estate Surprises

Predictability and continuity are the gold standard of business operations. Nothing is more disruptive than an unplanned event that sends shock waves throughout the enterprise. One of the greatest disruptors is the death of a principal owner or employee. Having solid business agreements in place provides better clarity and certainty for you and all stakeholders, including business partners, family members, employees, customers and suppliers. Regardless of the size and structure of your business, understanding and strengthening agreements, with contingencies in the case of your incapacity or death, is a vital part of estate planning for all business owners.

Informal or “In-trust” Accounts: Friend or Foe

Grandparents and other loving relatives often wish to make a gift of money to a minor child, whether it’s to start an education fund, purchase that first car or just allow the workings of time and money to benefit the child in the long term. To keep things “simple,” these gifts are frequently set up as informal trusts in “in-trust” or “in trust for” accounts (“ITF”). While these accounts are less complex and expensive than traditional trusts, there are certain things that should be considered when these types of accounts are set up.

Estate Planning for Physicians

You’ve been devoted to establishing your medical practice, providing for your family and saving for a comfortable retirement. As busy professionals, doctors may overlook the potential impact on their family and practice if they were to become critically ill, incapacitated or pass away unexpectedly. That’s why it’s important for physicians to prioritize estate planning within their wealth management planning.

United We Stand: Planning by Spouses

The old-age axiom “the devil’s in the details” applies on several levels to the drafting of Wills. Whether a beneficiary receives a gift outright or in a trust, whether or not an adult beneficiary must wait to receive the entire trust capital at a specified event or upon attaining a specified age, whether or not an individual is a member of a class of beneficiaries, can depend on a single word, a phrase, punctuation or the interaction among these “details”, written in a Will. The drafting lawyer works her craft to reflect the intentions of the testator (the individual whose Will is being drafted) with respect to various “WHAT IFs”, in the context of certain plausible circumstances.

Estate Planning for Blended Families

Family structures have changed significantly in recent years and it is not uncommon for people to enter a second, third, or even fourth marriage. Some who have been through a traumatic divorce may decide not to marry their current partner, but instead to live in a common-law relationship. If one or both partners have children, the family dynamic may become quite complicated, so it is important to have a proper estate plan in place.

“Letter of Wishes” for Wills and Discretionary Trusts

When a trust is established, a trustee is appointed and the terms under which the trustee is to administer the trust property are specified. Sometimes the terms of the trust are quite straight-forward: the trustee is to keep the capital of the trust invested; distribute the income to the named beneficiaries on a prescribed basis; and distribute what is left of the trust property to identified beneficiaries upon attaining a specified age or upon the occurrence of a specific event. However, other trusts provide the trustee with broad discretion in administering the trust. This article will discuss the role that a “Letter of Wishes” (or “Precatory Memorandum”) can play in providing guidance to the executor of a Will or trustee of a discretionary trust.

Estate Planning for Indigenous People and Implications for Reserved Lands

Estate planning requires special considerations for Indigenous people who are subject to the laws set out by the Indian Act1(therein referred to as status “Indian”.2 ) and other relevant legislation.

Different Ownership Structures for Real Estate Investment Property

Investing in real estate has always been a popular investment strategy for building wealth, particularly in active housing markets and big cities like Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal. No matter where you choose to invest, the decision to purchase real estate should be reviewed with your tax and legal advisors to understand the tax and legal issues applicable to your particular circumstances, and to determine whether it is a suitable option for your situation.

Estate Planning for Digital Assets

When developing a comprehensive estate plan for the transfer of assets, it’s important to understand and obtain informed guidance on an often overlooked group of assets: your digital assets. These assets are constantly and rapidly changing, and are increasingly subject to cyber threats. That’s why it’s so important to understand not only how digital assets work, but also the best way to finalize and safely dispose of them once you are gone.

Alter Ego and Joint Partner Trusts

Alter-Ego Trusts, which are set up for individuals, and Joint-Partner Trusts, which are set up for spouses (including common law couples), are often used as Will substitutes by many high net worth families. These Trusts are inter-vivos trusts, created during the lifetime of the settlor (the person who sets up the Trust). They offer complete confidentiality while providing important tax benefits, creditor protection and incapacity planning.

Planning for the Family Vacation Property

Many Canadians appreciate the benefits and joys of owning a cottage, cabin or chalet (“vacation property”), and wish to pass the ownership and enjoyment to the next generation. Designing a succession plan for the future ownership of your family vacation property can be challenging, especially because these properties often hold tremendous sentimental and monetary value. In addition, it is likely that more than one child may want ownership; however, the asset cannot be divided. As a result, it’s important that your estate plan take this asset into consideration to ensure that it is properly accounted for and, if applicable, transitioned based on the needs and desires of the family.