Is Probate Necessary Before Property Can Be Transferred?
The old reference to “probate” in Ontario has been replaced with the Certificate of Appointment of an Estate Trustee. Probate referred to proving the Will in Court.
Naturally, the procedure is slightly different depending upon whether or not there is a Will.
The claims of the beneficiaries vest after three years. So, in that case, you may only need to register a copy of the Will. That is a much less expensive route than proving the Will. In other cases, a vesting Order can be sought, but that procedure is more expensive than simply making application for the Certificate.
While “probate” can be avoided, in most cases it is the “quick and dirty” way to resolve matters without problems. So, it is a fairly good solution.
It should also be noted that if property is held in joint tenancy either with a spouse or someone else, then it is only necessary to “register” a proof of death certificate. At one time, this was the death certificate produced by the Province under the Vital Statistics Act. Now, a Funeral Director's certificate will do.
Brian Madigan LL.B., Broker