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Snowbirds – What Happens if you Die Away from Home?

Travel Protection Insurance Plan

Snowbirds, have you stopped to consider what happens if you die away from home? This is not a very pleasant topic to think about, but it does happen. How would your family deal with this? If you have not made your funeral arrangements in advance including the Safe Return Travel Assistance coverage, then your family will have a lot of work to do to get you home. Read more

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Snowbird Traveler’s Check List – 15 Things to Consider

secure return travel assurance plan Are you a snowbird? How wonderful it is to be able to travel south to warmer weather over the winter. Before you fly or drive away, peruse the checklist of 15 items below to be sure you have your health and hearth protected. Read more

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Process for Assessing & Collecting Ontario Estate Administration Tax

Ontario Estate Administration Tax

In the 2011 Ontario budget, the Ontario government indicated that they would tighten the probate filing rules to enhance compliance by transferring administration of the Estate Administration Tax from the Ministry of the Attorney General to the Ministry of Revenue and Finance. This change received royal assent in 2011 and was announced in force January 1st, 2015. Effective January 1st, 2015, the Ministry of Finance now has a more defined process for assessing and collecting the Estate Administration Tax (EAT). Read more

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Ontario Estate Administration Tax Filing Rules

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In our last blog we spoke about Ontario Probate becoming the Estate Administration Tax, the Certificate of Appointment of Estate Trustee and the importance of this certificate to confirm the appointment of an Estate Trustee. This certificate authorizes the Estate Trustee to work on behalf of the deceased and start the process of closing the estate. Further to this, effective January 1, 2015, the Ontario Ministry of Finance implemented new Estate Filing Rules for people acting as an Estate Trustee in Ontario, for estates valued at greater than $1,000.00. Read more

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Pre-paid Funeral Plan – Will I Get What I Paid For?

funeral preplanner Mississauga Oakville

During a recent presentation to a Lions Club a lady asked me “How do I know that the prepaid funeral will actually give me what I paid for – not something cheaper in the end?” When people have the courage to preplan and prepay their eventual funeral arrangements, they enter into a contract with the Funeral Home and a licensed Funeral Director. The binding legislation for the profession is the Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services Act. In this legislation, it is mandated that every funeral home must have a current price list, and all goods and services must be itemized on the prepaid funeral contract – exactly as these items are listed in the price list. Additionally the Ontario Board of Funeral Services has outlined how all prepaid funeral contracts must be organized. Read more

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5 Tips for Delivering a Powerful Eulogy

eulogy template

Today your best friend’s wife called and asked you to deliver the eulogy for her husband’s upcoming funeral. A eulogy is a speech or written tribute giving high praise to a deceased person. Immediately you agree to do this and feel honored to have been asked. Later that day as you sit down to write the eulogy you might find yourself feeling overwhelmed, have no idea where to start, and stare at the blank paper or screen for a long time. What do you say? What impact did this person have on your life and on the life of others? How do you begin to sum up the accomplishments and the influence your best friend had on you and others over the years? These are great questions and certainly not an easy task.  A well prepared and delivered eulogy not only helps the family but helps those attending the service who did not know the individual as well, have a great sense of who they were, what mattered to them and how they positively impacted other people’s lives. I thought it might be helpful to provide the following 5 steps to help you craft a powerful eulogy. Read more

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Can I be Cremated if I’ve had Hip or Knee Replacement?

funeral preplanning Mississauga Oakville

“Can I be cremated if I’ve had hip or knee replacement?” is a reasonable question and the answer is yes! Increasing people are choosing cremation as their choice of disposition. According to the Board of Funeral Services Ontario Quick Facts 2103, of the 93,102 registered deaths in 2013, 56,294 or 60.46% of the disposition was cremation. These figures are provided by the Office of the Registrar General and data from 2014 is not available. Read more

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Disabled Beneficiaries – Would a Henson Trust Benefit your Situation?

funeral preplanner Mississauga Ontario

Many Canadians are aware of the importance of having a valid will and powers of attorney document, yet, the importance of these documents is vastly underestimated in the special needs arena. Careful estate planning is necessary if persons with disabilities are to become beneficiaries of an estate. Individuals who live in Ontario should consider taking advantage of the Henson Trust when planning for their beneficiaries, who are recipients of ODSP benefits. Read more

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What to do Next When a Loved One Dies in Hospital

funeral preplanner Mississauga Oakville

I have had this question from a few people who have attended my seminars… “If my loved one dies in the hospital – what do I do next?”  The answer is – Your first call is to the Funeral Home.

The Funeral Home will ask you some initial questions and fill out what is called a First Call Sheet. The information needed will be: Read more

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What is a Coroner’s Certificate? 4 Situations Where it’s Required

coroner certificate Ontario

Many clients have asked me what a Coroner’s Certificate is and why they need it. Here are 4 situations where it is required.

1. Cremation application

Under the authority of the Coroners Act R.S.O. 1990 C.C. 37 a Coroner will investigate the death of all people who wish to be cremated. The Coroner’s signature is required on all Cremation applications. This is necessary as the Coroner has the highest authority in the province and must sign a cremation application to authorize the cremation of the deceased. The Coroner is literally signing off that the deceased did not die of a suspicious or unusual circumstance that would require further investigation. Read more