Tax And Financial Planning

Estate planning involves a lot more than just preparing a will. In fact, wills aren’t necessarily essential to an effective estate plan. Estate planning is about protecting the interests of your family and loved ones, while minimizing or eliminating estate taxes, inheritance taxes and probate fees. Our team of professional accountants in Hamilton is trained to give you and your family the most flexible options with respect to tax and estate planning. This includes reorganizing the existing business structure and/or setting up a family trust. Wescan Accountant  will work with you to facilitate minimizing taxes and other costs and expedite the healthy transition of wealth without a dispute.

Our Hamilton-based estate planning team provides individuals, families and business clients with comprehensive advice customized to their specific needs to ensure the smooth transfer of assets to the next generation, including reducing or eliminating probate fees and minimizing or deferring taxes on capital gains, income splitting through the use of spousal (for married or common law spouses) and testamentary trusts as well optimizing wills to enable charitable giving.

Planning for the transfer of assets on death requires careful consideration of the tax consequences that may arise at such time. Our expert accountants will analyze the different tax consequences that may apply in respect of various asset classes such as registered plans, non-registered investments, corporate assets, real estate and personal property.

Without proper planning, a Canadian taxpayer’s estate may encounter a host of legal issues if he or she dies intestate (without a Will). These include the application of probate tax on assets that may have been transferred without probate, triggering capital gains tax which may have been deferred and/or guardianship issues for minor children.

Our professionals analyze the facts specific to each client’s situation in order to recommend and implement an appropriate plan. We also help clients settle estates of Canadians who pass away owning real property in foreign jurisdictions. In preparing your estate plan, we will review your assets, beneficiaries and will, and then communicate with your lawyer, or we will refer you to one of our own legal contacts should a lawyer be required. Our estate planning services include:

  • Estate planning, including “estate freezes”, to ensure that the impact of taxation on asset transfers is minimized
  • Family budgeting and planning in order to help meet future financial goals
  • Coordinating with other professionals to ensure that your specific needs are met
  • Resolving estate beneficiary disputes
  • Financial and tax planning
  • Business succession planning
  • Wills and power of attorney
  • Advise on the use of trusts, including family, alter ego, and spousal trusts
  • Mitigation of double taxation exposure through post-mortem planning
  • Preparing financial statements for estates and trusts
  • Advise on charitable giving, including the use of private foundations

Estate planning can be a difficult process emotionally, but it is an important matter and there are many personal factors to consider. We may not look forward to making these types of decisions, but it is extremely important to have a solid plan in place. Estate planning is about planning for others – your family, your business partners, other special people in your life, and your favourite charities.

When you work with us we want to: ensure that you and your family have control over who oversees the estate, explain what you can expect to pay in estate fees and keep these fees to a minimum, allow your family to receive money and property from the estate in the least stressful and costly matter, review your Will with you and help you update or change the document according to your wishes, anticipate and avoid any family conflict that may arise after death, and implement a tax planning strategy that will minimize the taxes of the estate.

Preparing yourself and your family to plan for your estate can be a daunting task. We will guide you, step-by-step, through the process of establishing an effective estate plan.