HOW IT WORKS
Are you preparing a will, or sensitive documents that you would like to share with people? Want to avoid unnecessary awkwardness or sensitive disagreements that may result because of this. What if there was a way for you to make sure your loved ones can get the documents you prepared for them, after your passing?
One Less Worry
TIME SECURED will save you those sleepless nights wondering if they have the most up to date documents, or if they lose or forget any hardcopies you had given them. It will also save you from sharing sensitive wishes or instructions before really having to do so.
The TIME SECURED App is the first app dedicated to this type of service. Just set up an account to upload your information and document into “vaults”. These vaults will be accessible to you and to people you select, at a time of your choosing.
You set when and how they have access. In case you are not around, they will be able to request access to your “vault” and upon confirmation will get all the documents you had intended for them.
Ensuring Easy Access
All the beneficiary has to do is submit a request for access and validate, through a set process. An alert will be sent to you to confirm if this is ok with a wait period determined by you. You can choose to reject the request or simply do nothing to allowing access as intended – no hassle, no problems.
The TIME SECURED App makes everything from creating the document vaults, to adding beneficiaries and setting the access timelines a simple process. The easy to use App is your tool to make sure your loved ones get the information you want them to have, when you want them to.
Write your own will in 5 easy steps
Can’t afford a will? The truth is you can’t afford not to have a will. Writing a will is the only way to retain control of your assets and nominate the beneficiaries upon your passing. It is nowhere near as difficult as many would have you believe. So, where do you start? How do you protect your assets upon your death? It is fair to say that estate planning BC has changed over the last couple of years with the introduction of electronic wills and electronic storage. Where you have a relatively complex estate, you may require a degree of legal advice, while others may require little or no input from the legal profession. Whatever your situation, writing your own will is still relatively straightforward and something you should consider. Estate planning issues You must discuss estate planning issues with your advisers before attempting to write your own will. Even though there are several online wills BC, including the popular Staples will kit, you must be careful and ensure everything is in order. Online wills BC work well for those who have a reasonably simple estate. However, if your estate is a little more complicated, you should seek at least initial guidance. Probate tax Canada While there is no probate tax Canada, your estate will be charged a fee based upon the value of your assets. In British Columbia, the situation is as follows:- Estates valued at less than $25,000 will not attract any probate feesEstates valued between $25,000 and $50,000 will be charged a probate fee of six dollars for every $1000 worth of assets, or part thereof, between $25,000 and $50,000Estates valued in excess of $50,000 will be charged $14 per $1000 worth of assets by which the estate exceeds $50,000Those estates valued in excess of $50,000 will also attract an additional probate fee of $200 Any probate tax Canada due will be taken from your estate, reducing the amount available to distribute. If you decide to use a probate solicitor, you will probably be looking at additional fees of between 2% and 5% of the estate’s value plus VAT. Consequently, some people will take general legal advice and use this to write their own will. The easiest way to write a will BC The Staples will kit could be an interesting place to start if you have a moderately complex estate. As you will see with a quick Internet search, each Staples will kit offers a different degree of flexibility to suit your scenario. However, it is possible to write your own will without any third-party documentation. Step One: Decide who will be your beneficiaries Estate planning BC is critical, because without a will the courts will become involved, creating added expense and reducing the value of your estate. First, write a list of beneficiaries and what assets you would like to gift them on your death. If you decide to split your estate equally between numerous people, there is no need to specify individual assets. Step Two: Appoint an executor The appointment of an executor is an integral part of estate planning issues and something you should decide upon at a relatively early stage. Many people have friends and family as executors, while others choose those from a more formal profession, such as a solicitor. You will also need to appoint a backup executor in the event that your original choice is unable to fulfil their executor obligations. Step Three: Create a formal document It is essential that your will is marked as such and clearly revokes any previous wills in existence. Unless the document is titled explicitly as your will, it could be taken as advice with the courts potentially becoming involved. The online wills BC market is relatively large, with packages such as the Staples will kit proving very useful. In addition, many examples are available online to give you an idea of the format and specific wording. Step Four: Specify miscellaneous provisions While the distribution of assets is the central part of any will, there is also the opportunity to add specific miscellaneous provisions. This may include the appointment of a guardian for your children or someone to look after your pet. Unfortunately, many people retain these miscellaneous provisions in their minds but fail to add them to their will. Consequently, this is one of the estate planning issues which is often overlooked. Step Five: Notarize and register your will Under normal circumstances, your will would be signed off in the presence of a notary in British Columbia. This will involve two witnesses, at least 19 years of age, and the notary signing your document as a legal instruction. At this point, your will is live, although you will need to register the document with the British Columbia Vital Statistics Record Office. Storing your will There are numerous options when looking to store your will, one of many estate planning issues you will need to address. For example, you could keep a physical copy at home, with a friend or leave it with your local bank or solicitor. Recent changes to regulations now allow you to store (and write) your will in electronic format in the cloud. Wherever you decide to keep your will, make sure there are clear instructions about executing your instructions on your death! Simplifying estate planning issues In light of Covid, we saw several changes concerning estate planning issues, including the introduction of electronic wills and remote witnessing. This meant that two individuals (one of which would need to be a lawyer/notary public) could witness the document while being in electronic contact but without physically being in the same room. Many people expected these changes to be temporary, but they have been brought into BC law and are now part of estate planning BC. Then there is the ability to store your will in electronic format, with several will cloud storage companies now emerging. This has injected a degree of competition into the estate planning BC market, which will eventually lead to a more competitive charging structure. Are you ever too young to have a will? When looking at estate planning BC, you must be over the age of 16 and of sound mind to make a will. Traditionally, those who die young without a will would typically see their assets distributed amongst immediate family. However, there is nothing stopping anyone over the age of 16 from writing their own will, in line with the relevant legal procedures, and allocating existing and future assets as they so wish. However, this issue could be controversial if a young person was left a significant amount of money/assets as a beneficiary, for example, of their parent’s will. Even if the beneficiary was over the age of 16, some parents might decide to appoint a trustee to manage their inheritance. It will depend upon the individual situation, but it is possible to leave assets for a beneficiary under the short-term control of a third party. Avoiding family feuds While wills and inheritances are not the easiest of things to discuss across the dinner table, unfortunately, they can lead to long-lasting family feuds. Consequently, many people now look to write and register their wills away from family and friends, relying on executors. Some people have used family friends as their executors, but this can lead to issues with:- Biased opinions on asset allocation If an executor has a connection with one of the potential beneficiaries, or someone frozen out of your will, this could place them in a difficult situation. Even with the best intentions, it can be challenging to maintain an unbiased opinion in these situations. Is it fair to put a friend/acquaintance in such a position? Negating gift instructions to an executor The more detailed your will, the less chance it will be challenged in the courts. Leaving a gift in your will to an executor may raise some eyebrows in some situations. Where you influenced? Were you in a fit state of mind when preparing your will? Rightly or wrongly, these questions could form the basis for a legal appeal against your will. Whether you seek the assistance of a friend, distanced from the scenario and not a beneficiary, or a close adviser will depend upon your situation. Retain control of your estate! Whether you are considering using something similar to the Staples will kit, writing your own will or taking advice from a solicitor, you need to retain control of your estate. If you don’t have a will, the courts will make the decisions; you will lose control of how your assets are distributed while potentially building up significant additional costs. Failure to act today may see your loved ones stripped of their rightful inheritance tomorrow; those assets it took you years to build up. This is your chance to provide for them in your absence.
Simple 10-Step Estate Planning Checklist￼
The sooner you start, the simpler you will find estate planning! The longer you leave it, the more complex and the greater the chance you will miss out on regulatory and tax breaks. So, where do we start? By breaking down the process into simple bite-size bits…. Estate planning BC is simple in principle but can be pretty complex in practice, especially with no preparation. Essentially, you need to know your starting point, where you want to be, and the most efficient way to get there. Our estate planning checklist walks you through the process, prompts you to think about specific areas in isolation, and brings everything together at the end. Whether looking at online wills BC, trustees, beneficiaries or the ever-changing regulatory environment, there is much to consider. 1. Review Your Assets and Liabilities The first stage of estate planning BC is to review your assets and liabilities, employment, investment and other sources of income. Even though many of us have an idea in our head as to what we are worth, liabilities and plans for the future, when written down on paper they may differ significantly. Therefore, every element of your financial life must be noted in this review. This ensures you can make plans for the efficient structure of your estate and gives you a starting point, a foundation going forward. 2. Appoint Financial Advisers When you have a list of your assets, liabilities and income sources, this is the time to approach a professional financial adviser. They will sit down with you; look at your assets and liabilities in more detail and your hopes and aspirations for the future. While you will likely need some legal representation to complement your financial adviser, the degree of additional assistance will vary. If you have a relatively simple estate, it should be reasonably easy to keep the cost down when looking at estate planning BC. Those with business interests and assets spread across Canada and the rest of the world may need specialist assistance. When it comes to business interests, there may already be pre-existing arrangements with directors/partners which need to be respected. In many ways, advice is the key in the early stages, as this will guide you in the appropriate direction. 3. Identify Your Goals As we touched on above, if you don’t know where you wish to go, how will you know when you get there? Typically, people leave the vast array of their estate to family and close friends. Indeed there are rules and regulations regarding estates; if no will or instructions exist, assets will be shared out amongst spouses/partners, children and the wider family. So it is essential to recognise how you wish your assets to be shared at a relatively early stage. Would you like your partner/spouse to receive everything and manage part on behalf of your children? If there are significant assets available, it may be an idea to set up a trust fund for your wider family. Do not automatically assume that those “left behind” are in synch with your thoughts. They may not know about your goals and wishes for your assets. You must leave no element of confusion! 4. Create an Estate Management Plan The only way that estate management BC looks simple is because you have done the groundwork; you have started relatively early and taken it piece by piece. Now that you know your assets and goals for the future, it is time to establish a formal estate management plan. This will incorporate several individuals such as trustees, lawyers, financial advisers and beneficiaries. You may require additional assistance in some cases, such as a particularly complicated personal/business life. The next stage of the estate planning checklist is to appoint the relevant people and build on the foundations with the legal paperwork. 5. Appoint trustees/executors Whether we are talking about online wills BC or the more traditional written will, you must have trustees and executors in place. This prompts the question, what is the difference between a trustee and an executor? A trustee is in charge of managing the estate before it is passed to the beneficiaries. An executor is an individual/company appointed to carry out the deceased’s wishes. They will be involved in many activities, which can include any of the following:- Applying for probateValuing the estateSettling inheritance taxRegistering the deathArranging the funeralClosing relevant accountsCollating assetsDistributing funds/assets Many people are misguided and automatically assume that the executor and trustee have similar roles. This brings us to other questions, such as; can an executor be a beneficiary in British Columbia? While legally, there is no reason why not, from a moral/simplification point of view, the easiest thing to do is to appoint executors that are not beneficiaries. 6. Complete the Relevant Paperwork Now that you have your team in place, your list of assets/liabilities and have begun taking formal advice, now is the time to complete the relevant paperwork. When we say “paperwork”, many will be aware that online wills BC are now recognised under the law and legally binding. Consequently, this section applies to both online and physical wills. When it comes down to placing your instructions on paper, there is a growing trend toward excluding immediate friends and family from discussions. This allows the individual to remain focused on what they want, not being overly influenced by the hopes and aspirations of others. Unfortunately, even relatively quiet, unassuming people can turn into hard-nosed individuals if they feel they have been “wronged” in someone’s will. Therefore, you must add as much detail to your will as possible, leaving no room for different interpretations or legal wrangling. Failure to create a watertight will can, and often has, resulted in legal action. This not only drags the individual’s family through the courts but can also lead to significant costs, which may be taken out of the estate. In this situation, nobody benefits. 7. Register Estate Documents Even though there are numerous ways in which you can leave instructions after your death, many people still use the Canada Will Registry. This is a handy starting point for family and friends on your demise. The registration document will note executors and trustees, those allowed access, and details of how your estate should be split. While there is no legal requirement to register estate related documents prior to your death, if they are lost or destroyed, this can cause serious problems. 8. Store Estate Documents There are numerous methods of storing estate documents to ensure they are to hand upon your death. These include:- LawyersBanksFinancial advisersTrusted partiesCloud services It is also essential that out of date wills and estate related documents are correctly destroyed. Failure to do so will only cause confusion which could lead to more legal challenges and significant costs. In addition, you will make the situation much more transparent so that everyone knows where they stand. In recent years we have seen the emergence of virtual storage facilities for legal documents. These services also ensure the timely release to trustees and executors. Due to a change in British Columbia regulations, it is now perfectly legal to store your will and last testament in the clouds. While slowly starting to be appreciated by the wider public, this is a significant development. 9. Adapt and Maximise Regulatory Changes The idea that your estate planning checklist is a one-time visit, a one-off event, is a fallacy. As we have all seen, governments in British Columbia, across Canada and the globe are regularly changing financial regulations, including estate laws. While dependent upon the type of government, new rules may emerge which are beneficial, while others may increase the government’s tax take from your estate. Whatever the situation, it is vital that you adapt your estate planning checklist to make the most of often complex regulatory changes. Your advisers should rubberstamp any significant adjustments to the structure of your estate. 10. Annual Review of Your Estate Planning It is good housekeeping to review your finances and your estate planning checklist on an annual basis. Sometimes, you may require additional advice throughout the year, while other scenarios may require a simple box-ticking yearly meeting. However, you must sit down with your advisers regularly. It may be that your personal circumstances have changed, your finances have exceeded initial expectations, or there may be family issues. An annual review ensures that there is regular communication between advisers and clients. It also allows all parties to discuss any issues at hand or potential challenges going forward. Do not underestimate the importance of an annual client meeting! Fail to Prepare, Prepare to Fail When looking at our estate planning checklist, everything appears simple, straightforward and obvious. This is the whole point of the checklist, breaking down a potentially complex task into more manageable bite-sized chunks. Focusing on specific issues instead of the broader picture encourages a high level of detail and greater understanding. It is essential to have peace of mind while also exerting control of your assets before your death. This ensures that an estate that may have taken decades to build is directed at your preferred beneficiaries. By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail; it is as simple as that!
Your personal digital vault, and your best shot at making your cherished documents a legacy.
Time Secured first started as a solution to a problem we as developers faced. We lost loved ones, family members, and best friends that left us lost and overwhelmed, and wishing we had something to remind us of them. This included important documents, old pictures, writings, and sensitive secrets - Small but important things that belonged to them and that if we had access to, would make their memory live forever, enabling us to have material tokens of cherished moments available every time we miss our dear ones a little more than usual.
As the forward-thinking developers we are, we went straight to the drawing board with one simple concept in mind: Create a secure, cloud-based vault for people to store every file, document, and image in to make their memory last forever.
And that’s exactly what we created: a platform that you have complete control over, that can keep your documents of choice and your will safe and sound decades after your passing, and that your loved ones get the memories and the closure they deserve.
Complete accessibility on all mobile platforms.
When developing Time Secured, we also wanted to make sure that whatever you leave behind, truly looks and feels like you, and can be accessed by any of your loved ones no matter their age, their technical knowledge, or the device they’re using. This is why Time Secured is completely customizable, with different themes, color palettes, and separable into multiple vaults. Time Secured is also available on the Apple store and Google play, and only takes a few minutes to set up and start storing. Because time, as life constantly teaches us, is of the essence.
Time Secured started when there was a noticeable gap for tools that allow a person to share their final will, or other important documents, after they pass.
For a number of reasons people may not want to share some sensitive information with their loved ones while they are alive, but they want to make sure they have this information once they pass.
Time Secured was created to solve this problem, helping both the person who is creating the documents and those who receive it, with an easy process.
A passing vault is the main reason for the app. It allows you to share the vault and its contents in a way that makes sure your beneficiary or beneficiaries can get the files in the vault you created, even after you pass away.
If you pass away, the chosen beneficiary can request access to the information through a link in the email they receive; which will be sent to them after you add them to the vault.
When the request is made, the user who created the vault will get an alert. The user can reject access to the file request within a defined number of days, if they are still alive or don’t want to share the documents just yet. The number of days duration is chosen by the user when the vault is created by them.
But if there is no rejection, the beneficiary will be sent all the files in the vault through the selected beneficiary email.
The trigger vault is an added feature to the Time Secured app. It allows the user to create a vault and set a date and time to share the vault with the selected beneficiary.
There is no email request required, when the time for the vault arrives, the documents will be automatically shared with the beneficiary by email.
It is a great way to share information if you know the exact time you want to do so. Once you set the time trigger, just forget about it and Time Secured will make sure the documents are sent on time to the chosen beneficiaries.
This can be useful if you want to share documents to children once they reach a certain age or after a certain event. It can also be useful for sharing signed documents and agreements at a specific time for example.
An email will be sent to them with instructions on how to access the vault if it is a “Passing” vault. They They will request access and if the creator of the vault does not reject their request, they will be able to access the vault and download the documents.
For a “Trigger” vault they will be sent the documents at the specified time automatically.
Depending on the subscription level; for “Standard Subscription” users can upload up to 10MB worth of documents and files such as word, text, excel, and PDF files.
For “Premium Subscription” users, they may upload up to 100MB worth of files permitted in the Standard Subscription, plus a number of multimedia files such as pictures, audio and video.
We might expand this if there is a need to do so in the future.
You will be able to upload a scan copy of your final will, much alike any other file. Please note that uploading a final will to Time Secured may not be enough for a court to determine that the will is valid. In many places they still require to see the original document of the final will, and having an email or scan may not be enough.
Please check with your local area to see what the requirements are, including whether a will needs to be notarized or not.
You may still upload copies of your final will to Time Secured where it will be kept safe, along with confidential instructions of where your original final will document is located. For example you may provide the safe access number if your will is located in a particular safe box, the login information if it is nationally registered, or a instructions on the location if it is in the house.
They will be kept so long as the subscription fees are made. If the subscription payment is not made, a warning will be sent to the user by email to make payment within a month. If a payment is not made, the account, vaults and documents will be deleted.
If the user cancels the account at any time by choice, the account and its contents will be deleted within a two-week period.
Time Secured will delete all the relevant files from the database. Time Secured will not keep any future copies of deleted vaults and the files contained within them.
All new users will receive a free 1 month trial period, following which they will have the option of a either a monthly subscription of $1 USD or a yearly flat fee of $10 USD for a “Standard Subscription” which allows document uploads up to 10 MB.
For multimedia uploads, such as audio, pictures and video, in addition to documents with our “Premium Subscription” the monthly rate is $3 USD and a yearly flat fee of $30 USD. A maximum file size of 100 MB is permitted under this subscription.
We are looking to adding existing additional features in the future such as increased file size uploads and creating a more streamlined process and interface.
This is an app for you, so any comments or feedback you may have would be welcome. If you would like any additional features, we would be happy to look into it and respond back on where we end up.
GET IN TOUCH
If you have a question or need support, we are here for you. We are ready to answer your questions and look forward to recieving any feedback you may have. We treat your concerns and comments as a priority.