All About Estates

Probate Forms are Changing…Again

Today’s blog was written by Yvonne Mazurak, Associate, at Fasken LLP

As my colleagues, Sandra Arsenault and Betty Laidlaw, have both described in posts earlier this year, Ontario Regulation 709/21 introduced significant changes to the probate procedure. Among the changes, which came into effect on January 1, 2022, was the introduction of new consolidated forms.

Recently announced updates, set to go into effect on July 1, 2022, will impact the new probate forms introduced in January. The updated forms can all be accessed on the Ontario Court Forms website, where a chart lists all of the Estate Forms under Rule 74 of the Rules of Civil Procedure, with the updated forms highlighted in grey.

Several forms have been updated. Here is a brief overview of some of the notable changes to Forms 74A and 74C:

Form 74A – Application for a Certificate of Appointment of Estate Trustee:

  • Part 3, Information About the Deceased’s Spousal Relationships, is now broken into sections, which are to be either filled out or deleted based on whether the application is with a Will or without a Will.
  • Where there are multiple applicants, the declarations under Part 6, Entitlement to Apply, must be reproduced for each applicant and any statements that do not apply can be deleted.
  • In Part 7, Beneficiaries, a beneficiary’s relationship to the deceased must be stated, and if a beneficiary’s name appears differently in the Will, the reason must be explained.
  • Two new sections have been added:
    • Part 9, Estate Administration Tax, where applicants can indicate whether they are seeking an order to defer payment.
    • Part 10, Bond, where applicants are to indicate whether a bond is required to be addressed, and if they are relying on an exemption form posting a bond.

Form 74C – Certificate of Appointment of Estate Trustee:

  • The form includes specific language to be included depending on if (i) the Will was executed remotely, (ii) the Certificate was issued following a court order, (iii) a person has renounced their right to a certificate of appointment, or (iv) a person named as estate trustee has died.

Though change is often not easy, I suspect these updates will be well received by many. The updates seem to respond to feedback from estate practitioners and bring additional clarity to some aspects of the forms, which is of course never a bad thing.

About Maureen Berry
Maureen Berry is a partner in the Trusts, Wills, Estates and Charities group at Fasken. Maureen’s practice is focused on wills, estate planning, domestic and international trusts, private corporation taxation, and executive compensation. Maureen also advises charities and non-profit organizations. Working with Canadian and international families, firms, corporations and charitable organizations, she provides advice on all aspects of private client matters. She is a leading expert in the fields of tax law and estate planning. As an Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School, she teaches Advanced Estate Planning. Maureen has previously taught corporate tax and international tax at the University of Toronto and Western University, along with the Bar Admission course for up-and-coming lawyers.

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