Holograph wills vs Notarial wills, Dying Without a Will in Quebec, notary, Will-in-Quebec-notary.jp


Dying without a notarial will (registered at the Chambre des Notaires of Québec) or other type of will (before witness or holograph) will result in the legal devolution of your property. This will be influenced by your family situation.  According to several studies, more than 70% of Quebecers do not have a will.  Many think it is too expensive and even unnecessary.  However, a death without a will can have consequences for your family.

Sharing of Assets and Possessions If you die, but you did not have your will draw up, the division of your property will be done according to the articles of the Civil Code of Quebec.  Of course, no one knows your last wishes.  Then the sharing will be done through the law.  The heirs, in this case, will also be the liquidators of your possessions.  Generally, the property is given to the deceased’s partner (united by the bonds of marriage or civil union) and blood relatives such as children, parents, brothers and sisters, etc.

For common-law partners, the consequence is that they receive nothing as inheritance because, legally, they are considered without legal bond between them and the deceased.  Thus, in terms of inheritance, children have priority over common-law partners.

Depending on the situation, the spouse, the children or and the family will inherit and will split the assets between them, according to the proportion established by law.

The question of succession It is possible for heirs to refuse what is due to them.  In the event that the deceased dies and has a lot of debts, the heirs can accept or refuse the succession and their choice must be made 6 months after the person’s death.  From the date of death, the heirs must make an inventory with the deceased’s assets and debts, and also, very importantly, do not confuse the estate’s assets with their personal property, because in this case, they are supposed has accepted the estate, or to be held liable for the debts of the estate, beyond the value of their inheritance. If an inventory had already been taken, the heirs must pay the debts until the value of the assets is equalized.

Without an inventory and in the event that the heirs accept the estate, they will become liable of the entire debt, even if the assets of the succession do not have sufficient value.  In other words, the heirs will have to pay the balance of the deceased’s debts with their own assets….

At the Fiscal Level From the outset, the tax rules state that the heirs become liable of the deceased’s assets once the death has occurred.  Therefore, some assets (e. g. REER, business or income property) may give you a capital gain or income.  So, you will absolutely have to include it in your tax return to avoid problems.


Dying without a testament can affect your heirs, including the division of your property, liabilities, fiscal consequences, and so on.  This is particularly disadvantageous to common-law partners.  In addition, the heirs will have to consult a notary before accepting a succession with debts.  But overall, it is best to have your will drawn by your notary so that your last wishes can be fulfilled as you would like.

Dying Without a Will in Quebec

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