4 min read

The Ins and Outs of Will Creation for Business Owners

Written by
Willfinity Team

Greetings to our fellow Canadians! Have you ever pondered about the unique considerations that business owners face when drafting their wills? If you’re an entrepreneur, this topic is especially pertinent. At Willfinity, our commitment is to simplify complex processes, and today, we shed light on creating wills for business proprietors.

Is Willfinity Suitable for Business Owners Like Me?

As someone who took the entrepreneurial plunge and founded Willfinity—an online platform dedicated to will writing—I resonate deeply with the concerns of fellow business owners. My journey through the intricate world of estate planning inspired the birth of Willfinity, and I've always been passionate about ensuring that my peers in the entrepreneurial realm have access to comprehensive information.

The initial question that many business owners approach us with is: "Is Willfinity the right fit for me?" The short and sweet response is a resounding yes. Your business assets, much like your personal belongings, deserve to be accounted for, and Willfinity is designed to accommodate those needs.

“Carry on Business” Clause Explained

One notable feature in the wills we curate is the "carry on business" clause. This provision is nestled within the executor powers section. Its primary purpose? To grant the executor the express authority to, metaphorically speaking, walk in your shoes and make pivotal decisions concerning your business interests. This can range from selling the enterprise, offloading shares, winding down the venture, and other related actions.

However, there's a limitation to bear in mind. While the executor can make decisions regarding the business's operations and assets, they cannot assume the role of a Director. For instance, if you have a seat on a Board of Directors, your executor cannot replace you in that capacity.

Diving Deeper: Do Business Assets Require a Separate Corporate Will?

The concept of a "corporate will" often surfaces when discussing estate planning for business owners. Essentially, it's a distinct will that encompasses solely the business assets, separate from personal assets.

The need for such a will varies. In some cases, crafting a dual will—one for personal assets and another for business-related assets—can be beneficial from a tax perspective. Yet, it's crucial to note that Willfinity currently doesn’t cater to tax planning through dual wills or specialised succession planning. For those with intricate business requirements or those seeking tailored professional counsel, consulting with a tax expert or attorney might be a prudent step.

Understanding the Nuances: Business Succession Planning

While wills play a significant role, business succession planning is a broader topic that delves into the future of your business once you’re no longer at the helm. It encompasses aspects like who will take over, how transitions will be managed, and how the business's legacy will be preserved.

Here's a fundamental truth: Life is unpredictable. As business owners, we invest not just our money, but our dreams, time, and passion into our ventures. Ensuring a smooth transition and a secure future for the business is not just a financial consideration—it's a legacy matter.

Willfinity's platform, while comprehensive, doesn't delve into the intricacies of succession planning. If you have unique wishes or require a tailored approach, seeking out specialized professionals in this realm might be beneficial.

Additional Points to Ponder

  1. Executor Selection: The choice of an executor is paramount, especially for business owners. This individual should be adept at making informed decisions regarding the business's future. It's also wise to have a conversation with your chosen executor ahead of time to ensure they're up for the task.
  2. Shareholder Agreements: If your business has multiple shareholders, it's worth revisiting any shareholder agreements in place. These agreements often have stipulations regarding the transfer or sale of shares upon a shareholder’s death.
  3. Business Valuation: Regularly valuing your business can be advantageous. This not only provides clarity on its worth but also aids in tax planning and informs decisions in your will.
  4. Tax Implications: As previously mentioned, there are potential tax benefits in crafting dual wills. It’s worthwhile to explore this with professionals to optimize your estate's value.
  5. Keeping the Will Updated: Businesses evolve, as do personal circumstances. Regularly revisiting and updating your will ensures it remains aligned with your current situation and wishes.

In Conclusion: The Willfinity Promise

Embarking on the journey of estate planning, especially as a business owner, might seem daunting. Yet, with the right resources and guidance, it can be a smooth and enlightening process. At Willfinity, we're committed to demystifying will creation and providing a platform that resonates with the needs of many.

But remember, while Willfinity is a robust platform, it might not encompass every unique need. It's always a good idea to seek professional advice when in doubt.

Stay informed, plan ahead, and protect the legacy of your entrepreneurial journey.

Table of Contents
Create a legal will online in as little as 10 minutes.
Illustration of a man sitting next to a typewriter.
Start for free

Ready to finally tick your will off your to-do list?

Create a will
Bottom mask