Removal of a Committee or Litigation Guardian

Removal of a Committee or Litigation Guardian

The applicable case law and test for the appointment and removal of committee or litigation guardian of a patient’s estate is the Supreme Court of Canada decision of Gronnerud v Gronnerud (2002) 2 SCR 417, which essentially was a useful statement of the parens patriae… Read more

Witness Credibility Assessment

Witness Credibility Assessment

Robledano v Jaconto 2018 BCSC 152 reviewed the law relating to the criteria to be used when assessing the truthfulness/credibility of a witness. The case involved a claim of same sex marriage where it was disputed between the parties that such a relationship existed prior… Read more

Transfer of Property Registered After Death Valid

Transfer of Property Registered After Death Valid

Chung estate v. Chan 1995 BCJ 2195 was a decision of the BC Court of Appeal that held that a transfer of real property from a deceased person to himself and another person as joint tenant, was valid despite the fact it was registered at… Read more

Dysfunctional Families: Depersonalization Disorder

Dysfunctional Families: Depersonalization Disorder

Most of my clients at disinherited.com come from what generally might be described as dysfunctional families that ultimately result in a disinheritance for a number of complex reasons. Part of my job as an estate litigation lawyer is to try and understand the complexity of… Read more

The "In Law Suite" - Unjust Enrichment

The “In Law Suite” (Unjust Enrichment)

A common source of estate litigation is the contribution of funds towards an “ in law suite”, that ultimately does not work out over time, and the in-laws sue to recover the monies that they contributed to their child, and his or her spouse’s home…. Read more

Executor's Remuneration

Executor’s Remuneration

A beneficiary has the right to challenge a claim by the executor for remuneration by compelling the executor to pass his or her accounts before registrar of the Supreme Court of British Columbia. The decision in re Sangha 2018 BCSC 54 outlined the various criteria… Read more

Proprietary Estoppel (SCC)

Proprietary Estoppel (SCC)

In a significant win for disinherited individuals who were promised to inherit an asset, the Supreme Court of Canada in Cowper-Smith-Smith v. Morgan , 2017 SCC 61 reversed the BC Court of Appeal and allowed a claim for proprietary estoppel. FACTS: The trial judge had… Read more

Mental Capacity is a Legal Test, Not Medical

Mental Capacity is a Legal Test, Not Medical

The test for testamentary  mental capacity is a legal test and not a medical test. It is very common in testamentary capacity cases to have a conflict not only between the evidence of the medical practitioners, but also between the evidence of the medical experts,… Read more

Interview: Ask & Answered With R. Trevor Todd

Interview: Ask & Answered With R. Trevor Todd

Trevor Todd was recently interviewed for an article in the Verdict (issue 155). View the original article here.   (1) the Verdict: With regard to both law clients and the legal system in general, what does the word justice mean to you? Trevor: Justice. As… Read more

Predatory Marriage

Predatory Marriage

Probably every experienced estate litigation lawyer has had court actions involving a predatory spouse. The phenomenon is disturbing and increasingly common in our society as individuals both live longer and accumulate more wealth. In simple terms, predatory spouses take advantage of elderly victims and assume… Read more

Unsigned and Undated Will Valid (S.58 WESA)

Unsigned and Undated Will Valid (S.58 WESA)

An unsigned will was found to be valid under section 58 WESA as representing the deceased persons fixed and final testamentary intentions that varied an earlier will in the decision Skopyk Estate 2017 BCSC 2335. The application to cure the will, under the provisions of… Read more

Enforcing Settlement Agreements

Probably most litigation lawyers have experienced the situation where a settlement is made on behalf of their client who then subsequently changes his or her mind. I have found this to have occurred on several occasions in recent years after a mediation of many hours… Read more

Rights to Purchase vs. Rights of First Refusal | Disinherited

Rights to Purchase vs. Rights of First Refusal

The distinction between a right to purchase as opposed to a right of first refusal was addressed in the Ontario decision of 2284064 Ontario Inc. v. Shunock 2017 ONSC 7146, which followed the Ontario Court of Appeal decision of 2123201 Ontario Inc. v. Israel Estate… Read more

Jury Trials

Jury Trials

Rule 12 – 6 sets out nine types of court actions that cannot be heard by a jury. A few of them are the administration of the estate of a deceased person, the dissolution of a partnership, foreclosure actions ,partition of property, custody and guardianship… Read more

Safeguard Your Original Will

Safeguard Your Original Will

It is important to safeguard ones originally signed the will as a presumption of revocation may arise if the original is lost that may result in expensive litigation with an uncertain outcome. Historically lawyers wanted to and did keep their client’s original wills, both as… Read more