Interim Payments Under Wills Variation

Interim Payments Under Wills Variation Grant v Grant estate 1997 Carswell BC 3773 allowed a widow in need of funds to receive interim payments under the wills variation provisions of WESA. The Grant and Hecht cases are only a few reported cases of the ability to… Read more

Quantifying Special Costs and Contingency Fees

Norris v Burgess 2016 BCSC 1451 stated the law for quantifying special costs and then applied that amount towards the plaintiff’s contingency fees. Norris was an ICBC case where the judge in a Jury trial found fault on the insurer for the late production of… Read more

Settlement Offers and Court Costs

Norris v Burgess 2016 BCSC 1451 deals with settlement offers and court costs, that is how courts adjust cost upwards or downwards either in favour of one party or against the other party depending on the parties conduct and the terms of any formal offers… Read more

Removal of Executor

 Re Kolic Estate 2016 BCSC 1312 contains an excellent summary on the criteria for the removal of executor.   In Kolic the court ordered the removal of executor for basically choosing sides in the litigation concerning the very will that she was to remain impartial… Read more

Executor Can Be Liable For Unaccounted Expenses

Jackson v King 2003 BCSC 328 is a good decision on a passing of accounts and held inter alia that an executor is entitled to be indemnified expect for unaccounted or excessive expenses for which the executor can be held personally liable.   The Court… Read more

Severance of Court Actions

Severance of Court actions joined together may occur in civil litigation.   The Public Guardian and Trustee for BC v Johnston 2016 BCSC 1388 has an excellent review of the law as to when the courts will order that court actions be severed from the… Read more

Court Pleadings

Court pleadings must briefly limit the issues of fact and law with certain clarity so as to give the opposing party sufficient notice of the case to be met at trial. The law relating to pleadings was reviewed in the Public Guardian and Trustee BC… Read more

Standing In Public Interest Concerns

Standing In Public. The issue of public interest concerns standing, being the capacity through proper connection  to bring a court action, was canvassed in Trial Lawyers of BC v BC Attorney general 2016 BCSC 1391 by Hinkson CJBC:   [8] The defendants assert that the… Read more

Summary Trial In Court’s Discretion

Whether or not a case is suitable or not to be decided by way of a summary trial is a matter of the court’s discretion depending on an a number of factors. Cotter v Point Grey Golf and Country Club 2016 BCSC 10 summarized the… Read more

Promissory Estoppel Revisited

The BC Appeal Court in Cowper-Smith v Morgan 2016 BCCA 200 allowed an appeal in part to over turn the successful  the claim brought for promissory estoppel at trial by finding that the claim should not be allowed where a non owner of property gave assurances… Read more

Witness Credibility

Witness credibility is essential to winning at trial as if a Judge does not believe your client or the witnesses then you will most certainly lose the case. I have joked for years that the competing stories in estate dispute cases are so diverse that I… Read more

Rebutting the Presumption of Resulting Trust

Rebutting the Presumption of Resulting Trust was discussed in Mac v Mak 2016 BCSC 1140: [122]     If the presumption of resulting trust arises, it may be rebutted by evidence of the transferor’s intention at the time of transfer to grant beneficial ownership to the recipient… Read more

Special Costs Not to Include Pre Litigation Conduct

Abuse of Process in BC Estate Litigation

Many estate litigation claims and counterclaims contain far too much emotional distortion so as to become frivolous, vexatious, unnecessary and otherwise an abuse of process that upon application, may lead to those portions of the claim found to be such to be stricken or dismissed entirely…. Read more

Mutual Wills Create Constructive Trusts

Mutual Wills Create Constructive Trusts Mutual wills  as opposed to mirror wills, are not very common, but when they exist and  breached, that breach creates a trust that can be used to trace the assets into the hands of third parties. Mutual wills are not… Read more

Interpretation of Court Orders

Interpretation of Court Orders occasionally arises in estate litigation where poorly drafted previous orders may require subsequent interpretation. Basically it is the same basic law as interpreting a contract. In Athwal v. Black Top Cabs Ltd., 2012 BCCA 107 (B.C. C.A.) [ the Court of… Read more