Dysfunctional Families: The Predator Spouse

Dysfunctional Families: The Predator Spouse

A disturbing and increasing  trend in dysfunctional families is the advent of the predator spouse who takes advantage of elderly victims and assumes control of usually  financial affairs and marries the victim in short order. Even if the family had been reasonably functional prior to… Read more

Dysfunctional Families – Emotional Manipulation

  Emotional manipulation refers to the attempt to  indirectly or directly influence or control someone else’s behavior or actions, and is commonly found in dysfunctional families. In estate litigation, I commonly hear my clients complain of being subjected to various forms of psychological manipulation, particularly… Read more

Relationship Between Parent and Child Is Fiduciary

A (LS) v A. ( WH) Estate 2014 BCSC  1910  ( Antrobus v Antrobus) discusses that the relationship of parent and child is fiduciary in nature, and that parents have an obligation to care for, protect and rear their children . This line of authority was… Read more

Financial Abuse of the Elderly

Elderly people are  more susceptible to financial abuse and  fraudulent schemes such as telemarketers  and contest frauds . Due to medical, technological and public health advances, the life span of a typical North American male or female has increased from age 68 in 1950 to approximately 80++… Read more

Abuse , Neglect and Wills Variation

In my four decades of experience most wills variation claims  bring with them an individual or even sibling collective  story of abuse, neglect, and  other dysfunctions that result in a disinheritance to top it all off. It is settled law that the wills variation act ( now… Read more

Dysfunctional Families – Shunning

Of the many dysfunctional families cases that I have handled, the most insidious was that of a teenage girl who accused her grandfather of molesting her only to find out that she became  shunned by her entire family, all while continuing to live in the… Read more

Adoption Purposes

Adoption is for all purposes. I advised a legal enquiry today that he could not claim aginst the estate of his natural father (birth  parent”) since he had been adopted by another party and that for estate claims, his adoption was for “all purposes”. Section 3 WESA re… Read more

Dysfunctional Families – Scapegoat Child Sues Parents and Wins

Scapegoat Child Sues Parents and Wins. I came across a case from 1994 where a 20 year old plaintiff who was abused, neglected and generally “scape- goated “throughout his childhood successfully sued his parents for their infliction of years of physical and mental abuse upon… Read more

“Family Cottage” Inheritances

I appeared along with Dawn Schooler of Jericho counseling on CBC radio Almanac show on July 18.16 for a discussion of the inherent problems of family inheritances of  the family cottage or any other recreational property. I prefaced my remarks by commenting that a recreational… Read more

Dysfunctional Families Produce Dysfunctional Adults

Dysfunctional Families Produce Dysfunctional Adults I mean no offence to anyone born into a dysfunctional family, but in my experience many of my clients are from such families and often carry many of the same attributes of dysfunction as a result. Understanding  the dynamics of… Read more

Dysfunctional Families – How To Recognize Them

As a boomer growing up in the Leave it to Beaver age, it was not until I practiced estate litigation exclusively  that I learned  to recognize dysfunctional families and the mess that they leave behind. ( typically my clients).  In discussing the family dynamic with many clients,… Read more

Who Should Be Appointed Committee (Guardian)

The vexing problem of who should be appointed the committee ( legal guardian) of a demented person under the Patient’s Property Act  RSBC often involves the worst of family ” tug a wars” over the financial  and personal affairs of a loved one.   The… Read more

Dysfunctional Families Result In Disinheritances

Forty  years of litigating contested estates has led me to conclude that dysfunctional families are much more inclined to result in disinheritances The reason is rather simple-dysfunctional families are toxic. I have no statistics to back up this assertion other than anecdotal as I venture… Read more

Dysfunctional Families and Birth Order

Studies have shown that the birth order of children plays a significant part in their development in functional families that can be exacerbated in dysfunctional families given their extreme dynamics. It is common for families with more than one child to joke about the innumerable photos… Read more

Favourtism In Dysfunctional Families

While applying favourtism with children can also occur in functional families, it is often more prevalent in and  to further extremes in dysfunctional families. Favoritism has negative effects on both the favored child and the unfavoured ones that have long-lasting effects throughout life. For example, while the… Read more