Visit our blog for posts on special topics.
This month’s blog post is about wills for artists and other creators. Rich or poor, creative people have assets, their creative output, that need special attention. – Link to post: The Artist’s Will
Every Will does at least two things, it appoints someone to look after your things (an Executor) and it names your next of kin or others you are close to and wish to name in the Will (beneficiaries). If you don’t have much in terms of earthly posessions, these are still important to settling your affairs. We offer a basic service for a low fixed fee to gather your information by email, prepare a Will and a few days later you come in to sign it.
They say there is no such thing as a simple Will and our experience confirms this. Every life is special and there are stories to be told. That said, there are many standard things every Will does that we provide for a reasonable fixed fee. Our Standard Will package includes time for meeting twice, once at the beginning and once for signing, and advice about listing assets, identifying beneficiaries and designating what goes to whom.
In some cases, there are circumstances that need special attention, assets that can be protected from tax, family situations that call for careful handling, children who will need a guardian and trust arrangements. In these cases, we charge a reasonable hourly fee on top of the Standard Will fee for advice and drafting of unique Will clauses to meet your needs.
A continuing power of attorney for property designates someone to look after your things should you become incapacitated. A power of attorney for personal care (a.k.a. living will) gives someone you trust authority to make decisions for you about medical care and living arrangements. We charge a modest extra fee to add these important documents to your Wills package.
Our research shows that many people get stuck in the process of making a will: finding an Executor, naming a Guardian or just the rigamarole of having to sign before witnesses. We will help you get past these obstacles.
If you’re ready to get started, please contact us to make an appointment.
P.S. – We make house calls.
There are four questions that hang people up when they think about getting their Will done. 1. Do I really need one? 2. What’s involved? 3. How much does it cost? 4. I’m too busy.
The short answers to these are:
A Will gives someone authority to manage your affairs when you’re not going to be there to do it. A Will appoints an Executor, identifies your things and the people you want them to go to. It can also do useful things like identifying your next of kin and how to contact them, express funeral preferences and give special gifts to people or causes that would otherwise be left out.
Typically we will meet with you at least twice. We need to understand your circumstances, any special wishes or arrangements, and how you want your things to be distributed. Wills language need not be complicated but it does need to say exactly what you want. Signing is the final and critical step. It has to be done right for your Will to be valid.
A good Will eases grief by relieving doubt about what to do next, who makes decisions, etc. Good planning will give you peace of mind and can also save costs in administration and tax. It also builds confidence, that you have looked after things as best you can for those you care about.
We are pretty good at keeping our clients motivated to complete their Wills. And if you get stuck, we will patiently help you get unstuck if you let us. Completing your Will has corollary benefits too: you’ll be closer to family and friends with whom you’ve discussed things and you will feel the kind of confidence that comes from knowing you have taken care of things for the people you care about.
Many people facing serious illness are confronted by the urgent need to create a Will to look after their affairs but are without resources to do so. Other people living precariously have become disconnected and isolated and need help knowing how to handle their affairs and stay connected to their families. We are partnering with other organizations to bring our services to these individuals.
We are located in Toronto, Ontario Canada at the Centre for Social Innovation – Regent Park.
Our wills practice is restricted to Ontario.
SimplyWills.ca is a project of Social Enterprise Advocates.