NoticeConnect makes it easy and inexpensive for estate trustees to advertise for creditors by letting them post notices online rather than in print papers. Our court-approved platform is now the standard practice in Ontario. Can estate practitioners in Alberta use us too? This was discussed in a recent article by lawyer Stacy Maurier on Estate Connection.
3. Print newspapers are disappearing, making it impossible to comply with the rules
In Ontario, the Trustee Act doesn't specify how notices to creditors must be published. That's left up to the common law, which has confirmed that NoticeConnect satisfies the legal requirements for advertising to creditors.
In Alberta, notices to claimants are governed by the Surrogate Rules of Court. Section 38(2)(a) states that:
A notice to claimants must be published in a newspaper that is published or circulated in the area where the deceased usually lived ...
But print newspapers are disappearing. Readership of print papers has fallen dramatically and print papers may disappear entirely in the next five to ten years. In June of this year, Postmedia announced that it's closing the Camrose Canadian and the Strathmore Standard, and reducing the print schedule of the High River Times.
This makes it impossible to comply with the Surrogate Rules.
2. Lawyers and trustees in Alberta already want and use NoticeConnect
In her article, Stacy Maurier discusses how she was approached by a client who brought up NoticeConnect with her:
One of my clients recently asked me why they couldn't advertise on the site and directed me to the website for NoticeConnect.
The online service is cheaper, more efficient, user-friendly, available 24/7, and powered by Google so they can easily be searched now and in the future. Better yet, If you are a creditor, you can register your debts with the site, and they will notify you if your debtors die and as a result have an ad placed through the service.
This sounds great, right? Why haven't Alberta lawyers started using this service?
In Alberta, our Surrogate Rules of Court, which is akin to an estate lawyers workplace bible, doesn't allow it. We need to advertise in an old-fashioned newspaper. A newspaper ad that will cost about the same as a flight from YEG to YVR and that the local community will never read.
Some Alberta lawyers and trustees are already publishing on NoticeConnect because there is no print option available.
1. Our system is effective, affordable and ready-to-go in Alberta
NoticeConnect is already on estate administration software used by practitioners in Alberta.
Publishing a notice to creditors/claimants on NoticeConnect costs a one-time flat fee of $130 plus tax. We offer commissioned affidavits of publication for $40 plus tax. Our notices are connected with creditors across Canada via direct mail, email lists, search-engine optimization, and social media. Creditors prefer our system because they can find relevant notices in one place.
We're trusted by governments, law firms of every size, individual trustees, and trust companies. The demonstrated success of our platform - for practitioners and creditors alike - means that Alberta can count on NoticeConnect to improve estate administration.