In Ontario, if you die without a Will, most people assume that your assets will automatically go to your spouse. However, this is only true for a portion of the assets. The balance are shared between the spouse and any children. There is also a lot of administration involved in the administration of resolving estates with no Will.
It is really important to get a Will done, and ensure your beneficiaries are appropriately designated on any policies of life insurance, investments and/or that your accounts and property are owned jointly with your intended beneficiary (where applicable). This will cut out a lot of “red tape” for your surviving spouse in what is already a difficult time.
Sometimes we hear from clients that “they don’t have anything” so why spend money to get a Will? This is simply not true. Even if your estate is as simple as a bank account, a car, and personal effects, you need to ensure your survivors have the authority to handle the wrapping up of those items. To ensure this is properly done, you need a Will.