Alberta Probate Law: Understanding the Basics
In all estate matters in the province, Alberta probate law helps set out what happens when someone dies with a will. When a person dies, it can sometimes be difficult to know how to legally distribute assets to family members. In addition, people need help understanding how to handle outstanding debts of the estate, and how to deal with other matters regarding executing the terms of the will. Fortunately, in February of 2012, Alberta put into effect the Wills and Succession Act. The effected changes to Alberta probate law. The probate law lawyers at Kahane Law Office assist clients in and around both Calgary and Edmonton, Alberta help get a grant of probate.
What Is the Wills and Succession Act?
This single act united the Wills, Survivorship, Dependents Relief and IntestateSuccession Acts. These four laws formerly acted to govern estate law in Alberta. It includes Alberta probate law. This act brought together elements from those four acts and made important changes to other acts. This happened to provide a better legal guideline for the smooth and proper administering of estates.
The entire Wills and Succession Act can be read here. It is easy to see that this act contains a lot of information, detailing the complex requirements included in estate and surrogate law under Alberta probate law. Depending upon the size and intricacy of the estate, not all of these regulations will be relevant to every case.
The Wills and Succession Act outlines the following issues regarding estate law in the province of Alberta:
- Submitting applications to the courts
- Creating a legally valid will
- Making modifications to a will
- Distributing the estate among beneficiaries
Important Changes Made to Alberta Estate Law in 2012
When created, the Act implemented some important changes that went into effect at this time. For example, these changes include:
- Protections for Surviving Spouses and Partners. Surviving spouses and partners have the benefit of a temporary place to live. This happens if they do not already have ownership of the property that was shared with the deceased partner.
- Handling Multiple Deaths. If two related people die at or around the same time, the estate distributes assets as if each person passed before the other. The previous laws would treat the younger of the two people as a survivor.
- Extrinsic Evidence. Evidence that was not originally included in the will can be admitted to and considered by the court in order to determine the intentions of the deceased.
These are just a few examples of important changes that took place regarding Alberta estate law at this time. To fully understand the laws, and how they might impact your family, it is wise to refer to the Act. In addition, executors often consult with an experienced estate attorney. If the do, the estate pays for this service, not the executor.
Introducing the Surrogate Rules for Alberta Probate Law
The Surrogate Rules were developed as yet another result of the enactment of the Wills and Succession Act of 2012. These rules outline the duties and responsibilities of the personal representative of the estate, which could be the executor or the administrator of the estate. These rules detail how the representative must proceed when taking care of all matters relating to the estate. This includes everything from submitting the appropriate applications to handling the accounting for the estate to the passing of the estate accounts. This also sets out probate law for an Alberta probate of a will form another province.
Getting Professional Assistance In Calgary & Edmonton
Even if probate can be avoided because the estate is small and/or there is a surviving spouse who will take ownership of property, it is important to understand Alberta probate law. There are many confusing components involved. There are even misconceptions such a probate certificates. An estate may seem small or simple enough to forgo probate. However, a financial institution holding the assets may require probate under Alberta probate law.
Anyone involved in the probate process, whether they are writing a will or have been named the executor of an estate, must understand the many steps that must be followed and the steep requirements that must be met when administrating an estate in Alberta. An estate attorney can help lift much of this burden, making the process more comprehensible.
The Calgary and Edmonton probate lawyers and estate lawyers at Kahane Law Office help you when a family member or loved one has passed away and you are executor for them. Our goal is to make the process easy for you a this emotional and challenging time. To make connecting as easy as possible email us directly here. Alternatively, call us for help in and around Calgary on this number 403-225-8810. To reach our Edmonton office for help please call (780) 571-8463. For more information, click here to watch our video on probate and probate lawyers.