Monteith Lawyers - Family- Wills - Estates - Real Estate- Russ Monteith


Family Law


We are always here to answer your questions. We take the time to listen and understand your unique situation.

You are using a browser that is not standards-compliant (possibly Netscape 4). The information on this Web site will be accessible to you, but for a list of Web browsers that comply with the World Wide Web Consortium standards, please visit our Web standards page.

Family Law - Wills
Estate Law - Real Estate
tel: 519.642.2500
fax: 519.432.0784

W. Russell Monteith, Q.C.




What is estate planning?
Estate planning involves the counsel of a professional estate lawyer who is familiar with our goals, assets, and concerns. The estate process covers the creation of a will and other legal documents that are designed to protect your investments and the people you love in the case of illness or death.

Do I need an estate lawyer to help me plan my estate?
Estate planning and will preparation is not a do-it-yourself project. The law is very complicated in these areas and can easily be misunderstood. If you make a mistake preparing or signing your own will or power of attorney, these documents may not function as you intended them to, or worse, they may not be valid at all.

What is a will?
A will is a legal document that sets forth your wishes regarding the distribution of assets and property, and the care of any minor children upon your death.

What is a trust?
A trust maybe created during a person's life in order to transfer assets to a beneficiary. When you create a trust you transfer assets to a person or persons whom you "trust." You no longer own the property, the trust does. The trust pays out any and all income to your during your lifetime, and on your death whatever is left will be transfer to a named beneficiary.

What is an executor?
An executor is he person named in a will or appointed by the court to carry out a person's financial affairs after death.

What is the difference between a will and a power of attorney?
A will only covers your affairs once you have passed on. A power of attorney can handle financial maters on your behalf even when you are still alive.

Why should I have a will?
There are many reasons why you need a will. A will gives you control over who will become the executor of your estate, your estate beneficiaries, and enables you to create trusts. A will allows you to set forth instructions for the care of minor children, and helps protect your assets from some taxation.

Why do I need a power of attorney?
A power of attorney authorizes someone to make financial or medical decisions on your behalf while you are alive. this is important when it comes to handling joint assets, like a house, that can't be sold without the consent of both parties. Imagine a scenario where you are in an accident and are unable to respond due to your injuries. Your spouse needs to sell the house in order to make ends meet, but since your name is on the title, he or she is unable to move forward without your consent. Having a power of attorney in place will ensure that your family never experiences this situation.

What is the estate trustee responsible for following the death of the deceased?
The estate trustee has three immediate tasks to complete:

  • Locating the deceased's will.
  • Ensuring the deceased's wishes for their funeral, as outlined in their will, are followed.
  • Cancel the deceased health insurance coverage, driver's license, credit card bills, club memberships, etc., and obtain any applicable refunds.


For help with estate law or to learn more about the duties of an estate trustee contact:

Wills - Estate Law
W. Russell Monteith, Q.C.
Suite 304 - 200 Queens Avenue, London, Ontario, N6A 1J3
T: 519.642.2500    

[back to top]