6 Steps to Settle an Estate Without a Notary
– Step 1: Determine if a notary is required
– Step 2: Search for beneficiaries
– Step 3: Search for creditors
– Step 4: Obtain a certificate of inheritance and death
– Step 5: Take the certificates to the deceased’s bank
– Step 6: Declare the estate received
It is possible to open an estate without the presence of a notary if certain conditions are met.
– As the heir, you must ensure that there are no other heirs and check for possible creditors.
– You must then obtain a certificate of inheritance and take it to the deceased’s bank.
– Finally, you will fill in an inheritance declaration to be sent to the tax office.
Here is a step-by-step procedure for settling an estate without a notary.
1. Determine if the presence of a notary is necessary
The estate includes at least one property
Regardless of the value of the real estate in question, it is necessary to use the services of a notary to proceed with the change of ownership.
Note: the heirs will have to pay transfer duties independently of the inheritance tax.
The succession follows a will or a donation between spouses
If a donation dictates the succession between spouses or a will, the intervention of a notary is mandatory.
2. Search for heirs
This step is only necessary if, as an heir, you suspect that the deceased may have had other children.
In this case, you must publish an official announcement in a local newspaper, inviting the heirs of the deceased to come forward.
3. Look for creditors
Check bank statements for the past three months
– Check the deceased’s bank statements, at least for the last three months.
– Look for credit card payments on the statements.
Look for evidence of loan insurance
The heirs will see if the deceased had taken out death and disability insurance by consulting the amortization schedule of the loans in question.
If so, they should call on the insurer to pay the remaining capital, thus relieving themselves of responsibility for the debts.
Contact the deceased’s bank
Contact the deceased’s bank branch to find out if there are any debts.
Good to know: if the heirs realize that the deceased’s debts are greater than the amount of the estate, they can refuse the inheritance or accept it only up to the amount of the net assets. In the latter case, they would not be responsible for the deceased’s debts.
4. Obtain a certificate of inheritance and death
Contact the town hall of the deceased’s last known residence to request
– a certificate of inheritance or a certificate of heirship;
– a copy of the death certificate.
5. Take the certificates to the bank of the deceased
Then go to the bank branch of the deceased and hand in
– the certificate of inheritance or a certificate of heirs;
– a copy of the death certificate;
– a bank statement of your current account and that of the other heirs.
Note: some bank branches may require more formalities.
6. Declare the estate received
Once the estate is received, all heirs must declare it to their tax office:
– within 6 months of the death, if it occurred in Canada;
– within 12 months of the death, if it occurred outside Canada.
There are many forms to fill out, depending on the situation. In the absence of a notary to assist with these procedures, it is recommended that the heirs consult the explanatory note from the Ministry of Finance.
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