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What Happens if I Don't Have a Will?

If you die without a Will, you will be deemed to have died "intestate" (i.e. without having left instructions as to how your property and assets are to be divided and distributed).

In such situations, your property and assets will be distributed according to the intestacy rules per the Succession Law Reform Act, which provides for a regimented distribution of your property, beginning with your spouse, then your children, and so on, rather than according to your wishes.

This can cause challenges for common-law spouses, spouses from a second-marriage, and others. This also means that your property and assets will not necessarily be divided as you would have wanted it to be divided and in the proportions you would have wanted it to be divided in.

In addition to creating significant problems for your family and other intended beneficiaries, dying without a will can also introduce substantial time delays and considerable costs to managing and distributing your estate.

Not having a will means you are essentially surrendering control over your property and assets to the courts and to the government and allowing them to decide how your estate will be divided and to whom it will go to.

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