An Angus Reid survey conducted last year found that 51% of Canadians do not have a will. This includes lawyers as it’s estimated that the percentage of lawyers without a will is about the same as the general population. Reasons for not having a will included being “too young to worry about it” (25%), not having any assets (23%) and not wanting to think about dying (8%).
It’s statistics like these that drive the need for “Make a Will Month”, the annual November campaign to raise awareness about the importance of having a well-drafted and up-to-date will.
In Ontario, the OBA’s Make a Will Month program gives its members the opportunity to promote their expertise and educate their clients and the public about the benefits of having a properly-drafted will. Throughout November, the OBA is hosting free information sessions presented by wills and estates practitioners at public libraries and community hubs across Ontario. In addition, the OBA website features timely information on how lawyers can help with complex estate issues, such as blended families, dependents living with disabilities, cross-border matters and digital assets.
Make a Will Month also gives us the opportunity to highlight some of the valuable tools we make available to help Law Society licensees in drafting wills for their clients.
Here’s a selection of current will drafting resources available through the Great Library:
- Lexis Practice Advisor – Wills, Trusts and Estates Ontario (available online in the Library)
- features will drafting checklists, precedent wills and clauses, as well as practice notes contributed by leading estates practitioners
- O’Brien’s Encyclopedia of Forms – Wills and Trusts (available online in the Library)
- includes sample wills, clauses and brief commentary to provide context for these precedents
- Law Society CPD papers from recent estates law programs (available free on AccessCLE), such as:
- Estate Planning Precedents: A Solicitor’s Manual by Lindsay Ann Histrop (available online in the Library)
- includes a wide variety of precedents covering all aspects of wills and estates
- Drafting Wills in Canada: A Lawyer’s Practice Guide, 2nd ed. by Robyn Solnik, Mary-Alice Thompson, Brian Gillingham. KF 755 S645 2016, Practice Collection, 2nd Floor.
- guidance and best practices for drafting wills, powers of attorney and other estate planning documents
Need more information about our wills and estates materials? Just ask us!