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Making a Will in British Columbia (Recorded Webinar)

Recorded on: 
October 8, 2020
60 minutes

Summary: Lawyers Michael Scott and Brandi Stocks and notary public David Watts answer common questions about making a will, including questions about how to choose an executor, provide for your children, take steps to prepare a will, and more. 


Viewing this recorded webinar you will learn:

  • How preparing a will is part of estate planning, and how a power of attorney and representation agreement fit into your planning. [4:10]
  • What a will typically covers, common reasons for creating or updating a will, and what to do if you don’t have one. [5:35]
  • The role of the Public Guardian and Trustee, including how they may become involved in administering an estate involving minor children or incapable adults, and how with advanced planning you can increase certainty and reduce the risk of costly procedures to ensure your dependents are adequately provided for after your death. [9:50]
  • The factors to consider when choosing an executor, including whether to choose a family member, friend or professional (such as a trust company), which other roles the executor may have (for example: beneficiary), how the executor will be compensated, and whether there are tax or other consequences in choosing a non-Canadian resident as your executor. [16:00]
  • What the law provides generally about how you treat your children under your will, and factors that would support unequal treatment in the will — such as gifts made outside of the will, or the circumstances of one child relative to others, like disability or financial hardship. [26:00]
  • Options “outside” of your will for leaving assets for your children. [28:10]
  • The importance of advanced planning to create your desired outcome and avoid additional administration costs after your death, particularly where there are vulnerable parties, like minor children, involved. [32:00]
  • The formal requirements for making a will, the impact of COVID-19 on witnessing will documents, and factors to consider when choosing a lawyer or a notary. [34:20]
  • What is meant by a living will and why you might use a representation agreement instead. [39:40]
  • Whether you need separate wills when you own property in Canada and in another country. [40:45]
  • Factors to consider in deciding whether to use a make-a-will kit. [45:55]
  • Whether you can name multiple people as caretakers for your children. [52:40]
  • Steps to take to leave a legacy, like a university scholarship in your name. [53:50]
  • How much it might cost to prepare a will. [54:40]

Attendee feedback


"Excellent presentation, the panelists explained in ways we can understand, and gave some examples in scenarios. Thank you."

"Enjoyed hearing from various experts and their perspectives. Thank you!"

"Was very informative and presented very well. Thanks to all the panelists."

"Mix of structure and Q and A was great, and combining similar answers was helpful."

"Thank you — good info and well organized and presented as always."

Additional resources 

Resources from People’s Law School: 

Public Guardian and Trustee:

Clark Wilson’s blog

David Watts Notary Public blog