Are clients overlooking power of attorney?

By Staff | April 4, 2014 | Last updated on April 4, 2014
2 min read

Half of Canadians have a will, while a third have a power of attorney for property and 8% of those surveyed by Scotiabank say they don’t know what POA is.

The incidence of a power of attorney increases with age. Some 58% of those 55 years old and over have appointed a power of attorney, while just 15% of those between 18 and 34 have one.

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That’s similar to the trend for having a will 19% of 18-34 year olds have one, while 30% of 35-44 year olds do; 50% of 45-54 year olds; and 86% for those 55 and older.

People who don’t have a will say they don’t have enough assets to justify making one (29%), or they don’t know where to start (24%), or they’re too young. Another 23% say they just don’t know why they don’t have one (both 23%).

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For those who do have a will and a financial plan, 77% had a lawyer or a notary help them create it, while 14% did it themselves and 7% used a financial advisor.

Just over half (54%) say they have spoken to their family about their intentions for their will. Of those who haven’t spoken to their family about their will (46%), their top reasons are: they haven’t thought about it (64%); their will is a private matter (17%); and that it is too soon to speak with them (11%).

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Atlantic Quebec Ontario Man./Sask. Alberta B.C.
Has a power of attorney for property 33% 30% 33% 35% 32% 35% 26%
Has a will 50% 44% 54% 53% 45% 49% 42%
Have spoken to family about intentions for will 54% 55% 51% 56% 52% 57% 56% staff


The staff of have been covering news for financial advisors since 1998.