Independent Legal Advice and Rebutting A Presumption of Undue Influence?

Independent Legal Advice Modonese v Delac Estate 2011 BCSC 82 has a very interesting discussion on whether or not independent legal advice will rebut a presumption of undue influence where that presumption might exist. The function of independent legal advice is to remove a taint… Read more

Mediation Works In Estate Litigation

Disinherited.com concluded another successful mediation this week. While discussing the overall process of mediation with the mediator, we realized that 19/20 of our last mediations together have resolve successfully. That 95% success factor in mediation is in itself astounding as it is the approximate general… Read more

Sexual Abuse Cases Are Different From Other Victims of Crime

Sexual Abuse Cases After having done estate litigation cases for almost 40 years, and exclusively for the last almost 20 years, I am continually amazed at the number of disinherited adult children assert that they were sexually abused by a parent, usually a stepfather, adopted… Read more

Bequests To a Non Existent Person

Gertrud Eberwein ( Re Eberwein Estate 2012 BCSC 250) and her very deficient will, made a bequest to a non existent person. Yesterday’s blog related to what happened to her bequest to a Charity that she had previously donated to, but no longer existed at… Read more

Charity No Longer Exists, So Wills Bequest Lapses Into Residue

Wills Bequest Lapses Into Residue Our previous blog related to the wills interpretation issues related to the Eberwein Estate 2012 BCSC 250. One of the issues involved in the interpretation of this will related to a charitable gift to an organization called Aid to Animals In… Read more

A Summary of the Principles Relating to the Interpretation and Construct of Wills

Interpretation and Construction of Wills The Estate of Gertrud Eberwein 2012 BCSC 250 is an excellent example of a wealthy person dying with a poorly drafted will that needs interpretation and construction by the court. The deceased died in 2010 at age 85 years. She… Read more

Will Set Aside For Lack of Capacity re Delusions Towards Next of Kin

Will Set Aside For Lack of Capacity Re Fawson Estate 74 ETR (3d) 86 is an interesting Nova Scotia case to do with mental delusions that voided the deceased’s last will on the basis that she lacked testamentary capacity. The deceased had no children or… Read more

Court Orders Production of Public Guardian Investigation File

Disinherited.com does not usually report on court decisions from other jurisdictions, but the re Landry Estate case from Ontario ( 2011 CarswellOnt 8830) is one that I believe that would also be followed in British Columbia, if such a decision in fact does not already… Read more

Adopted Ex-Husband Not Entitled to Share of Gore-Tex Fortune, Delaware Court Rules

Novel and interesting estate dispsutes frequently make the news, especially when the fight is over family fortunes. The Gore-Tex water proof founder recently died leaving an  estate that has $3 billion in annual sales. The following was taken from the Globe and Mail,  May 24.12… Read more

Court Refuses Special Costs, But Awards Increased Costs On Scale C Due to Case Difficulty

In our previous blog we discussed the award of special costs made against an estate  administrator who breached his duties. In  Antrobus v Antrobus  2012 BCSC 613, the Court declined an award of special costs but instead ordered costs to be increased under Tariff C of … Read more

Administrator Removed For Misconduct -With Special Costs

  Sahota v Sandhu 2012 BCSC 552 is an example of a very straight forward court application to remove and replace a court appointed estate administrator who flagrantly acted in breach of his duties. His actions were clearly so egregious that there was little surprise… Read more

Mother’s Advancement of $50,000 to Son , Found to Be Loan and Not Gift

Mother’s Advancement of $50,000 to Son Who Died Found to Be a Loan and Not a Gift BY Appeal Court It is often difficult to determine the intention of the grantor when monies are advanced for no consideration from one party to another and it… Read more

Equity

In brief, equity is the conscience of our common law system. It is a series of rules and remedies developed by the English Courts of Chancery (aka  Courts of Equity) which historically grew up parallel to the English Courts of Law. Even after the merger… Read more

Law Firm Denied Fees For “Unclean Hands”

  Chudy v. Merchant Law Group, 2008 BCCA 484 illustrates the interplay of legal and equitable principles, and the role of equity in the doctrine of “unclean hands”. By way of background, Mr. Chudy was seriously injured, while a passenger, in a motor vehicle crash. … Read more

Disclaimer – “Thanks, But No Thanks”

Disclaimer- Thanks, but No Thanks What do you do when a formerly beloved relative dies, bequeathing to you a piece of swampland polluted by atomic waste?  Must you accept this “gift”? The legal answer is clearly “No” so long as you disclaim the gift in… Read more