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The Best Will and Estate Lawyers for Wills in Alberta

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wills in Alberta

If you want someone to help you with estate planning, litigation, or give you professional advice on assets – you’re going to need the best will and estate lawyers in Calgary. However, finding the top professionals for wills in Alberta might not be an easy feat considering the number of law practices and lawyers you have to go through.

To help you in your search for the top will and estate lawyers in Calgary, we’ve come up with the ultimate guide. Today, we’ll help you understand just how these attorneys can help you, what to look for, and how to prepare for your meetings. Let’s get right into it.

What Do Will and Estate Lawyers Do?

Estate lawyers practice trust and estate law, handling all aspects of the processes used to protect and pass along assets after a client’s death. They work with their clients, tax professionals, and financial advisors to create customized estate plans based on an individual’s needs. 

While estate lawyers’ duties and tasks are varied, here are what they most commonly do and how they help their clients.

Estate Planning

Estate planning requires a comprehensive understanding of Canada’s and Alberta’s estate trust laws. It also requires knowledge of family and tax law. As part of their job descriptions, estate lawyers will listen to clients’ concerns and goals for passing assets to family, friends, and organizations.

During estate planning, lawyers will help clients develop a plan to accomplish their estate goals. What’s more, they will advise their clients on ways to minimize the various taxes (gift, estate, income) associated with estate transfers.

Another part of estate planning deals with setting up and using trusts and wills in Alberta to maximize the benefits of each. Lawyers will also counsel clients who have businesses on how to best structure their estates to allow their businesses to continue operating even after they’ve passed on.

Another part of estate planning includes discussing and preparing advanced health care directives, as well as health care power of attorney relationships. These will provide authority and guidance to another party to make sure they’re carrying out the client’s health care decisions.

Finally, during estate planning, lawyers will draft wills and trust documents to carry out a client’s wishes while conforming with Canada’s probate law.

Updates to Estate Plans

For most people, estate planning isn’t a simple singular event, which is why the plans need to change to reflect a person’s life changes. Some common events that require an updated estate plan include:

  • Acquisitions or sales of assets
  • Marriage or divorce
  • Retirement
  • Death of an heir or executor
  • Birth or adoption
  • Children reaching the age of maturity

Advising Executors

When a person dies without a will in Alberta, a court has to appoint an executor to act as their representative. The executor needs to assist the court in wrapping up all of the person’s affairs and distributing property.

An executor will also have to prepare the estate’s tax returns and pay off the estate’s taxes if there are any outstanding ones. They will also have to pay outstanding debts and bills, sell personal property and real estate, and maintain the deceased’s home or other properties.

The role of an executor also means having to collect account information, distribute bequests, and pay the estate’s expenses. 

When you choose a friend or relative as the executor, it will likely be the first time they’ve ever been put in this position. To ensure everything runs smoothly and in accordance with the law, the executor will need assistance. Typically, they’re assisted by financial advisors, accountants, and lawyers who are experienced in the matters of estate law and wills in Alberta.


Estates and their administration can often cause disputes, which need to be resolved by estate lawyers. Disputes will typically center around the application or interpretation of probate laws. That means only the best will and estate lawyers are uniquely qualified to advocate for the interests of either the estate or the challenger.

Some typical disputes that come up during estate administration include:

  • Contested wills
  • Disputes among heirs
  • Tax issues
  • Disputes over instructions in a trust or will
  • Disputes between heirs and executors
  • Disputes between the estate and creditors or an estate’s debtors

How to Choose the Best Lawyers for Wills in Alberta

Here’s everything you need to consider when looking for the best lawyers for wills in Alberta.


Creating wills in Alberta and doing estate planning can be a very complex experience, which requires a lawyer who is familiar with these specific laws. The best will and estate lawyers in Alberta will help you better understand the law surrounding wills and estates. They will be able to provide you with accurate legal advice and help you navigate the often-complex processes.

Working with someone who has extensive experience also means having peace of mind and a person to guide you through the process. They will be able to use their knowledge and resources to protect your interests.


All of the best will and estate lawyers in Calgary have a reputation in the legal community. One of the best ways to learn about it is by asking around, talking with others who’ve been through the process, reading reviews, and checking websites.

Online reviews can give you a good idea of what others have said about the lawyer’s services and how much effort they put into client relationships. 


When it comes to planning your estate and doing your will, it’s always best to use local trusts and estate lawyers. Someone local to your area will be more familiar with the laws in your jurisdiction and the local court system. 

Another benefit of hiring estate lawyers is that they will be more accessible to you. It will be much easier to schedule in-person meetings and get them on a call when you have questions or concerns.


You should always ask about their fees when meeting with a wills and estate attorney for your free consultation. Make sure that you’re comfortable with the lawyer’s fee structure and everything included in it.

Depending on your case and the law firm you choose, you might get charged an hourly or a flat rate. Some lawyers will also offer contingency fees, meaning they only get paid if they win your case.

Preparing For Your First Meeting

Once you’ve settled on who you want to be your attorney, you need to prepare for the first meeting. The first step is getting organized and gathering the relevant documentation that provides a comprehensive image of your assets. The three main categories to cover are:

  • Statements of assets: Bank accounts, investments, brokerage accounts, pensions, and retirement accounts;
  • Policies and declarations: Life insurance, real estate deeds, titles to vehicles, beneficiary designations, divorce decrees, pre or post-nuptial agreements, birth and adoption certificates, business ownership documents, intellectual property, trademarks, patents, and copyright documents;
  • Accounting of debt: Mortgages, loan documents, and credit card statements;

If possible, you should also consider creating digital copies of all of your documentation. In case anything goes missing or gets misplaced, you will have a digital backup at your fingertips.

With all of your documents in place, you should ask yourself some important questions regarding your family and estate. Consider who will manage your money, care for your children, make critical healthcare decisions if you’re unable to, and become your executor. 

There are also lots of questions you need to go over with your lawyer and they will vary from one person to the next. However, some most common questions clients ask include:

  • How can you ensure my will is carried out correctly? 
  • How long does the estate planning process take to complete? 
  • What are the tax implications of my preferred estate plan and how can I minimize my tax burden? 
  • How will you handle updating my estate plan and do you conduct periodic reviews?

Create Wills in Alberta with Lawyers Direct Online

Lawyers Direct Online is the premier source for lawyer-reviewed wills in Alberta. The online platform guides you through making your legal will from the comfort of your home. 

Partnering with some of the best will and estate lawyers in Alberta, Lawyers Direct is a safe and secure service that comes with three pricing plans

With the No Review Plan, you can make your final wishes known, distribute your assets and property, and plan for your family. It allows you to create a legally valid will for a fraction of the cost.

The most popular Lawyer Review Plan comes with three documents: Will, Personal Directive, and Enduring Power of Attorney. It also allows you to make an emergency medical care plan.

If you want to create your will with your spouse or family member, you can also take advantage of the Two Adults Plan. 

To learn more about how Lawyers Direct Online can help you prepare for the future and protect your assets, contact us today.

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