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Having a properly drafted will is extremely important.  Aside from the fact that it may not affect the distribution of the estate as you wish, an improperly drafted will usually lacks some key elements needed to properly administer an estate.

One often overlooked area is the administrative powers included at the end of a will. There are two sources of these powers: statutory powers as set out in provincial estate statues, and the will. Statutory powers are very basic and simply give the trustee authority to preserve trust property, including some of these:

  •  To apply to the court for its opinion, advice or direction

  •  To invest and vary instruments

  •  To sell (where there is a trust for sales of power of sale)

  •  To employ agents

However, many other administrative powers are usually needed to administer an estate including some of the following:

  • The power to make spousal RRSP
  • The general power to make tax elections
  • The general power to deal with corporate securities
  • The power to pay taxes on behalf of a beneficiary to whom income has been  allocated
  • The power to limit or expand an estate trustee’s discretion
  • The power to enter into corporate reorganizations

It is important to include these additional powers in your will. Addressing the gaps ensures your estate trustee is able to effectively administer your estate including any appropriate post mortem tax planning on behalf of the estate.




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Wills and Estates lawyer

1400 Cornwall Road, Unit 11 Oakville Ontario L6J 7W5
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