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Estate administration: Beneficiaries in multiple jurisdictions

In this technological world, things change at a rapid place and people can get from one side of the world to another in no time. Many people don't stay in one place for long. When it comes to estate planning and estate administration in Canada, it might be wise to know how the rules change for those beneficiaries named in wills who change locations a lot and perhaps even marital status. When there is more than one jurisdiction involved, beneficiaries would be wise to find out how to manage taxes and assets in various provinces or countries. 

Even terms like spouse or dependent could take on different meanings, depending upon the area in which those terms are used. For instance, it could mean a dependent merits financial support in one jurisdiction, but not in another. Interpretations of the law can vary from locale to locale, especially internationally.

Laws in different countries develop differently even though they may be based on the same system, like common law. Those nuances in the law can be the defining factor when it comes to a beneficiary actually getting an inheritance and running into glitches when it comes to claiming it. That is why people need to be mindful of the applicable estate laws of the province or country involved.

A lawyer experienced in wills and estates law in Canada can help a client with estate administration issues. The attorney could also provide the names of experts, such as accountants and appraisers, who may be able to help. Whether named as the executor of a will, the trustee of a trust or the beneficiary of an estate, a savvy attorney is an invaluable asset.

Source:, "Don't let your inheritance get lost in translation", Avi Charney, Accessed on Nov. 28, 2017

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