Epilogue Wills Review
Epilogue’s straightforward online platform lets you create a legally-binding will starting at $139. In as little as 20 minutes, you can come away with a comprehensive will that covers all your bases, plus there’s the option to include incapacity documents for both finance and personal care.
- Complete estate planning (Will and powers of attorney/incapacity documents)
- Will that includes your RESP
- Couples estate planning
Founded by two former estate lawyers, Epilogue is a Toronto-based company that offers simple, fast and affordable online wills. With Epilogue, you can create a legally binding, comprehensive will in about 20 minutes. Epilogue wants to make estate planning as simple as possible, so there is no confusing legal jargon, and the platform comfortably guides you through the entire process. You just have to answer a few questions, wait a few seconds for the will to be automatically generated, pay and print (or have the documents mailed,) then sign it according to the signing instructions that come with your will—and voila! You have a legal will.
Here are some of Epilogue’s standout features:
- 100% online: Create a will online in less than 20 minutes from your own home. No need to visit a lawyer in person.
- Reliable: Epilogue’s legally-binding wills were designed by two professional estate lawyers.
- Multiple options: You can get a basic will or you can choose to include a power of attorney for property and a power of attorney for personal care. Both packages also allow you to select the option to create your will only (for a single person) or for you and your spouse/partner to each create your wills (for couples).
- Affordable: An Epilogue will costs hundreds of dollars less than creating a will in person with a traditional lawyer.
- User-friendly website: The website is well designed and easy to use. Prompts guide you through each step of the process, and you can save and go back to where you stopped at any point.
- Epilogue Learn Centre: The Learn Centre has in-depth resources that cover a wide range of topics, such as how to include pets in your will, the role of an executor, the role of a legal guardian, a glossary of estate planning terms and more.
Epilogue has two main will versions available: a basic plan that includes a will only and another plan that includes a will plus powers of attorney.
- $139 per individual or $229 per couple
- A customized will that includes your funeral and burial wishes
- Can update for free at any time in the future
Will + Power of Attorney
- $179 or $289 per couple
- Includes everything in the Will Only version
- You can appoint someone to take care of your finances on your behalf
- You can name a person to make healthcare decisions on your behalf
Pros and Cons
- Unlimited free updates — Make changes and alter your will anytime for no additional cost
- User-friendly — Easy-to-use website that guides you throughout the entire process
- Excellent customer service — Responsive customer service agents are available to answer your questions every step of the way as you do your online will
- RESP — You can include your RESP in your will
- Peace of mind — Legally-binding and just as valid as a will created with a lawyer in person
- Not yet available Canada-wide — Currently available in five provinces (Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba), and working on expanding to Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador by mid-to-late 2021. Epilogue is not available in Quebec, Yukon, Nunavut, and the Northwest Territories.
- Not ideal for complex financial situations — Ideal for people with simple estates. Complex cases may require you to consult a lawyer for independent legal advice.
- No legal advice — If you need a legal opinion you'll have to consult with a lawyer on your own. The site doesn’t offer legal advice and there’s no option for your will to be reviewed by a lawyer.
How Does Epilogue Compare?
Online wills are taking off in Canada and consumers have more choices than ever before. Willful, one of the most popular options, has a lot in common with Epilogue. Both have easy-to-use websites that can get you a legally enforceable will in about 20 minutes, and both allow free, unlimited updates.
Willful stands out for its availability. On top of being available in Ontario, B.C., Saskatchewan, Alberta and Manitoba, Willful is also available in Quebec (which most online wills in Canada are not), as well as Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Epilogue is not yet available in those latter three provinces. Willful also has a unique Family Plan option, which allows up to six people to do a full will with power of attorney and a living will at a reduced cost.
Epilogue scores points for the fact that it’s the only online will in the country that was created by experienced estate lawyers, so the documentation is very detailed and thorough. Epilogue also offers a resource-rich Learn Center that provides in-depth information on anything you want to know about wills. Finally, Epilogue is the only online will provider that lets you include an RESP in your estate plans, and the only online will provider that includes the appropriate affidavits with your will, depending on the province where you live (for example, the Affidavit of Execution in Ontario).
Additionally, the two companies offer their products at different price points. Epilogue’s standalone will costs $139 (or $229 for a couple), compared to $99 for Willful (Willful does not have a basic plan for couples). With Epilogue, a complete estate plan package, which includes a will, a power of attorney for property and personal care costs $179 ($289 per couple). Willful charges $149 for an estate planning package with power of attorney and living will or $250 for a couple if you choose the family plan.
Willful and Epilogue Price Comparison
Price for will only Price for will and powers of attorney Other plans Willful $99 for individuals; no basic plan for couples $149 for individuals; no couple rate Family Plan ($125 per plan, for 2-6 plans)
Epilogue $139 for individuals; $229 for couples $179 for individuals; $289 for couples N/A
Signing up for Epilogue
Signing up for Epilogue is easy. Just head to the home page and select the “Get Started” icon.
Next, you select the province you live in. Currently, Epilogue is only available in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario and Saskatchewan.
You’ll then be asked if you’re married or single. If you’re not sure how to answer because you’re not certain if you and your partner fall under “common-law” status then, for the purposes of creating your will, you just need to ask yourself whether or not you’re in a committed relationship. If so, click “Yes,” otherwise answer “No.” Epilogue will then ask you if you have children. Be sure to include any stepchildren that you consider part of your family.
The next step is to provide your email address, password and your full legal name in order to set up an account.
At this point, you’ll need to decide if you want just a will or if you also want to create incapacity planning documents (called Powers of Attorney in Ontario). A power of attorney is used in cases where you’re incapacitated through accident or illness and need someone else to make decisions about your healthcare and finances. It’s a good idea to have a power of attorney who you trust to take care of your interests when you can’t. With Epilogue, you can select a POA for your finances, as well as one for your healthcare.
Next, you confirm details like your marital status, birth date and gender.
You’ll also get the chance to make arrangements for your pets.
In the next section, you’re asked how you want to distribute and divide your money, belongings and other assets. You’ll also have the opportunity to donate to charity. You can also decide to divide up your assets and spread them between several people and charities.
At this stage, you’ll get into the nitty-gritty of your will, including all the specific individuals you want to leave things to, as well as the age at which your assets get passed on to your beneficiary, and if you have any particularly meaningful items you want to leave to someone.
You’ll also choose an executor. An executor is someone who will essentially manage your entire will and estate planning process.
If you’ve opted for a will and power of attorney package, this is where you choose who will act as your power of attorney. You will select a POA for property and a POA for healthcare. You can choose the same person for both.
Finally, you can determine whether you want life-sustaining treatment in an emergency.
Once completed, you can review your documents and pay. You must print out the documents and follow the detailed signing instructions for your witnesses. You will then have a legally binding will and power of attorney. You don’t need to send back the documents because Epilogue does not store the signed copies. Instead, it’s up to you to keep them in a safe place and tell others where to find them after you pass away.
Final Call: Is Epilogue Worth It?
While no one ever really likes to think about their own death, online wills can make estate planning as simple, affordable and painless as possible (much like online life insurance policies). Epilogue is an excellent resource for those looking to ensure a smooth estate planning process. With Epilogue, creating an online will is a straightforward process that gives you all the protection and peace of mind of a traditional will at a fraction of the cost.