Death and taxes in Oak Bay

Time to sharpen the pencil, and make a will

They say the only sure things in life are death and taxes.

As Oak Bay council embarks on its discussions tonight about what property taxes in the community might look like, it’s also Make a Will week in B.C.

The purpose is to encourage the public to write a will or bring an existing will up-to-date.

Writing a will isn’t on the minds of most adults prior to their twilight years.

New research shows a significant gap between the number of British Columbians who own a home and those with a legal will in place, particularly among those under the age of 35.

A March 2017 omnibus telephone survey of 500 B.C. residents by Mustel Group showed that 48 per cent of adults in the province have a will, while another recent Mustel survey showed that 74 percent of adults own a home.

The discrepancy is even higher among those 18 to 34 years old, of whom 50 per cent own a home but only 13 per cent have a will.

I get it, we don’t like to think about death, but a will is the best way to ensure that the people, charities and organizations receive the benefit of an estate. The kindest thing someone can do is ensure they have completed up-to-date estate planning, so that loved ones don’t need to worry about it after they’re gone.

The other motivation is cost: administering an estate can get expensive without a will, depending on the complexity of assets at the time of death.

Having a will also helps ensure that important questions for parents – like who will raise young children if both spouses die – are answered.

Creating a will is a straightforward process with a notary or lawyer, but there are options for writing a will without professional input. Find a Canadian will kit online at the Self-Counsel Press (self-counsel.com).

If you play your cards right, you may get that will in place before council decides on this year’s taxes during next Wednesday’s final budget meeting.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Michelle Obama: In Conversation in Victoria, March 31

Former First Lady hosted by Victoria Chamber for moderated event at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre

Victoria veteran receives the National Order of the Legion of Honour

Lorne Frame was pilot for the Royal Canadian Air Force during the Second World War

Saanich homeowner creates petition to abolish unrelated occupancy limits

Unrelated occupancy limits give rise to duelling petitions

Saanich fire station to receive green remodel after more than 40 years

New facility to feature solar panels, space for more emergency vehicles

Cold water swimming a morning ritual for Willows Beach crew

Group turned heads when they slow-walked into the Polar Plunge

VIDEO: 2020 BC Winter Games wrap up in Fort St. John as torch passes to Maple Ridge

More than 1,000 athletes competed in the 2020 BC Winter Games

Massive early-morning blaze destroys Vancouver Island home

Firefighters from three departments called in to battle fire at unoccupied residence

Still six cases of COVID-19 in B.C. despite reports of Air Canada passenger: ministry

Health ministry wouldn’t comment on specific flight routes

Violent ends to past Indigenous protests haunt Trudeau government

Trudeau adopted a more assertive tone Friday, insisting the barricade must come down

VIDEO: Wounded Warrior Run leaves Port Hardy on eight-day trek down Vancouver island

The team’s fundraising goal this year is $250,000, which is double last year’s goal.

HIGHLIGHTS: Day one and two at the 2020 BC Winter Games

Athletes had sunny – but cold – weather to work with in Fort St. John

Most Read