In Ontario only married spouses have a right to share in the estate of their spouse if their spouse dies without a will. This is called intestate succession. Common law couples are not included in intestate succession rights, no matter how long their relationship has lasted.
Common law spouses can ensure that their spouse receives part or all of their estate on death by having a valid will that provides for this. A common law spouse will only be excluded from sharing in the estate if their spouse dies without a valid will that makes provision for them. Michele Gordon, lawyer in Barrie, Ontario offers wills and advice for couples in a common law relationship.