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Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Coming soon - DIY letters of administration kit for Newfoundland and Labrador

The latest addition to our bookshop is almost ready for purchasing!

We are pleased to announce that we have completed putting together a comprehensive kit for anyone in Newfoundland and Labrador who wants to apply to the court to become the administrator of an estate.

The kit includes an 82-page print guide, with detailed explanations and instructions for preparing and filing all of the documents you need to apply to the court, as well as full-size samples of all the documents. It also includes a flash drive with all of the documents for you to download and use. The book is 8.5" x 11" and is coil-bound. It will sell for $40.

The kit should be ready for purchase in about a week. We're just waiting for the box of books to arrive from the publisher. You'll be able to get one from our website or from

While I am a wills and estates lawyer and a large part of my work involves making applications to the court for clients, I don't believe that making a kit like this available cuts into the amount of work available to lawyers. I fully recognize that not everyone is going to hire a lawyer to do the work for them. Either they live too far away from a lawyer, or they can't afford one, or they just want to do the work themselves because they believe it will be simple. That's why we made this kit. And I have faith that most people who get started on something on their own will realize it if they get in over their heads and will ask a lawyer for help if they need it.


  1. On this site I have seen where you say a parent can give an adult child money because people are allowed to give away own assets if they want even if this somewhat impoverishes the estate.
    I have also seen where you say if a parent gives an adult child money it is legally considered a loan (whatever the parent's intentions) and the amount will be deducted from that child's inherited amount.

    Can you clarify a bit?

    1. Sure. Let's use an example. Let's say Sally has 2 kids, Joe and Jake. She gives Joe $30,000 to help him buy a house. She makes a will leaving her estate, worth about 200,000 equally to the two of them. If she does not say anything in her will about the gift to Joe, he has to repay the amount or receive less than his brother so that they come out equal. (Joe would repay $30,000, making the estate 230,000, so each son would get 115,000). However, if Sally's will says that she forgives all loans and advances, Joe doesn't have to repay it, so the estate is reduced by 30,000. The 200,000 estate would be split equally. Joe would end up with $130,000 and Jake would get $100,000.


  2. Excellent, thank you.
    "Forgives all loans and advances".
    People, both clients and lawyers, need to remember that phrase.

    Parents so often 'help' each kid as the kid needs it. Joe got $30,000 for the down payment on the house, but Jake got several small installments to offset his children's private school tuition. It may come to a little more, or a little less.
    Then there's the vacation money Joe got, and the swimming pool bought for Jake's kids. . . .

    If parents mean it as a loan, they ought to write it down and include mention of it in the will. Otherwise to spare everyone a lot of quarreling, if the parents' intention was to help out as needed, they need to put in their will "forgives all loans and advances", being sure to do so even if their lawyer forgets to mention it.
    Wills should state one or the other, -- what needs to be repaid, and what doesn't. Surprisingly this is often left out.

    Thanks again for your superbly succinct explanation.

    1. Yes, people should definitely document these things, and their intentions. When I mention it to families, the response I get is that it would be insulting to the child to document it. It would be like saying they didn't trust him or her. I'd risk the insult myself, and if it was that hurtful, maybe the child could look elsewhere for financing!



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