What is Probate In Ontario

What is Probate in Ontario

When someone passes away in Ontario, their assets and property need to be distributed to their beneficiaries. Probate is a legal process that validates a deceased person’s will and confirms the authority of the executor to distribute the estate.

In Ontario, probate is handled by the Superior Court of Justice. The process ensures that the deceased person’s wishes are carried out and their assets are distributed according to their wishes.


Why is Probate Required in Ontario?

Probate is required in Ontario because it provides a legal mechanism to validate the deceased person’s will and ensure that their wishes are followed. It also provides protection for the beneficiaries, creditors, and the estate. 

During the probate process, any outstanding debts and taxes are paid, and the remaining assets are distributed to the beneficiaries according to the will.

What Does the Probate Process Entail?

The probate process involves several steps, including:

  1. Filing the application: The executor files an application for probate with the Superior Court of Justice. The application includes the original will and other documents, such as an inventory of the estate’s assets.
  2. Notice to beneficiaries: The executor must provide notice to all beneficiaries named in the will.
  3. Notice to creditors: The executor must also publish a notice in a newspaper, providing notice to any creditors to file a claim against the estate.
  4. Court review: The court reviews the application and issues a Certificate of Appointment of Estate Trustee with a Will, which authorizes the executor to act on behalf of the estate.
  5. Administration of the estate: The executor is responsible for collecting the assets, paying any debts or taxes owed by the estate, and distributing the remaining assets to the beneficiaries.
  6. Accounting: The executor must provide an accounting of the estate’s assets, liabilities, and distributions to the beneficiaries.

Overall, probate is a necessary process in Ontario to ensure that a deceased person’s wishes are followed, and their assets are distributed according to their will. While the process may seem complex, working with a probate lawyer in Ontario can help ensure that the process is completed efficiently and effectively.

Do all estates have to go through probate in Ontario?

Not all estates have to go through probate in Ontario. If the estate consists of joint real estate registered as joint tenants, joint accounts, or small assets such as a vehicle valued at less than $5,000.00, probate may not be necessary. It’s important to note, however, that the threshold for when probate is required may vary depending on the financial institutions and other parties involved in the estate.

In general, if an estate involves assets such as real estate or joint accounts, or if the total value of the estate is above a certain threshold, probate will likely be required.

It’s important to remember that even if probate is not required, the executor is still responsible for administering the estate and distributing the assets according to the wishes of the deceased person. Additionally, some financial institutions or other parties may still require legal documentation or a court order before releasing assets, even if probate is not required.

Overall, the need for probate in Ontario depends on the specific circumstances of the estate. For example, if you are an executor of an estate, it’s crucial to consult with a lawyer to determine whether probate is necessary and to understand your legal obligations and responsibilities.


Free Consultation

At our Law Firm we beleive in giving our client’s an oppourtunity to learn more about our expertise and experience before deciding to retain us. We offer 15 minutes free legal advice in Ontario. Call us, email us or use the form below to book your free consultation with a lawyer.

If you are based out of Ontario, please email us to book your appointment. 

Cheap real estate lawyers

Call us

(905) 795 7757 (647) 812 6938


(905) 795 1271

We Serve Clients Across Ontario

Multiple Meeting Locations

Call Now ButtonCall Now