They say only two things in life are certain: death and taxes. And of course, most of us would like to ensure that when we die, most of our assets go to loved ones, not to taxes.
That’s why naming a beneficiary to your account is critical. If you were to pass away without naming a beneficiary, all of your assets would become part of your estate and would be subject to applicable estate taxes. Find out more about the importance of naming a beneficiary here.
In this article, we’ll explain everything you need to know about designating beneficiaries on your eligible registered WealthBar accounts.
You can assign beneficiaries to your account fully online. Simply login to your WealthBar account through a web browser (on desktop or mobile), and click on your name at the top right corner.
Once you’ve named beneficiaries to your account, we’ll keep those details on record indefinitely, or until you decide to update them.
The following accounts are eligible:
Other account types should be considered through your estate planning and will.
What is a successor?
If you have a TFSA or RRIF, you can name your spouse or common-law partner as your successor. When you pass, a successor can take control of the account directly as the annuitant, allowing the money to remain within the registered plan.
What is a beneficiary?
A beneficiary can be anyone you choose to name (including your own estate) to receive the proceeds of the account upon your passing. Money is paid out of the registered plan. In the case of retirement accounts, withholding taxes may apply.
What is a contingent beneficiary?
In the case where a beneficiary or successor is not living at the time of your passing, the proceeds will be divided equally to the Contingent Beneficiaries listed when you designate beneficiaries through your WealthBar account.
If you do not want the proceeds to be divided equally among your contingent beneficiaries, and instead wish to assign specific percentages of the proceeds to various recipients, then you’ll need to fill out a Beneficiary and Contingent Beneficiary Designation form and mail it to WealthBar:
#490 - 1122 Mainland Street
Vancouver, BC, V6B 5L1
This is not required, but is recommended as it does help with identifying the beneficiary after you have passed.
No worries! Simply go back to the Beneficiaries feature under My Profile. You can click Change to imitate a new form, and we’ll keep the most recent copy on record.
You’ll be able to view and download a copy of your Beneficiary form in the Documents section under the Other tab. Look for the form called Beneficiary Designation.
Beneficiary forms will take priority over the instructions in your Last Will and Testament. However, you should ensure that your will has the same instructions to avoid that aspect of your estate goals being contested.
If you live in Quebec, you are not eligible to complete the Beneficiary form. Consult provincial rules for estates.
That depends on a number of factors, such as your tax residency and estate laws in the country where you pass away. We recommend that you still have a Canadian Last Will and Testament. We also recommend speaking with an Estate Planner in your country of Residence.
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