Wills Variation: Court Criteria Between Disinherited Adult Children and Second Spouses

Wills Variation: Court Criteria Between Disinherited Adult Children and Second Spouses

R. (J.) v M. (JD) 2016 BCSC 2265 summarized the court criteria will consider when deciding the competing moral claim of a disinherited  adult independent child  and a second spouse who inherited  the entire estate. The adult child had been disinherited and had been estranged from… Read more

Gifts to Witnesses: S. 43 WESA

Gifts to Witnesses: S. 43 WESA

Witnesses of a will and declares that such gifts are void, unless the court is satisfied that the will maker intended to make the gift to the person even S. 43 of  WESA governs the issue of gifts to though the beneficiary or his or… Read more

"Survive By Five Days"

“Survive By Five Days”

S  10 of WESA provides for when a person does not survive a deceased person by five (5) days or longer when provided for in an instrument(  ie a will) is conclusively deemed to have died before the deceased persona for all purposes and thus will… Read more

Abuse, Neglect and Wills Variation

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

Fertility and WESA: Is This Reproductive Matter Property?

Fertility and WESA

A deceased husband’s frozen sperm at a fertility centre was declared to be personal property under WESA and previous case law and thus could be inherited by the widow on an intestacy. The court in KLW v Genesis Fertility Centre 2016 BCSC 1621 ordered to release of… Read more

Wills Variation and Long Marriages

Wills Variation and Long Marriages

Ciarniello v James 2016 BCSC 1699 is a good example on how the court treats the division of estate assets  at the end of  long marriages when the survivor brings a wills variation action on the basis that she was not adequately provided for in her… Read more

Assets Passing Outside of the Estate

Assets Passing Outside of the Estate

Assets Passing – Probably most people in North America die holding assets that pass from their name to others or their estate that pass both ” inside” and “outside” of the estate. A deceased’s will only distributes assets that were personally owned by the deceased at… Read more

Court Discretion In Wills Variation Claims

Court Discretion In Wills Variation Claims

In wills variation cases now brought under S. 60 WESA , the judge has “entire discretion” in deciding pro or against a claimant on its findings of fact. In Swain v Dennison 1967 SCR 7 the Supreme Court of Canada held that the jurisdiction of… Read more

Court Overturns Man's Will on Moral Grounds

BC Court Overturns Man’s Will on Moral Grounds

The British Columbia Court over turned and varied a will where his four daughters had been left with nothing. William Werbenuk died more than two years ago with just enough money in the bank to pay for his funeral. The 86-year-old widower’s will gave all… Read more

S 151 WESA - Court Allows Applicant to Sue as Executor

S 151 WESA – Court Allows Applicant to Sue as Executor

Werner v. McLean 2016 BCSC 1510 granted relief under S 151 WESA that the applicant be authorized to bring court action in the name of and sue on behalf of the personal representative of the estate as executor. The court approval was in order to litigate… Read more

Adoption Purposes

Adoption Purposes

Adoption is for all purposes. I advised a legal enquiry today that he could not claim against 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 Adoption… Read more

Disabled Adult Succeeds Wills Variation

Disabled Adult Succeeds Wills Variation

Willott v. Willott Estate 1997 CarswellBC 2016, [1997] B.C.J. No. 2073, 20 E.T.R. (2d) 211 is a 1997 wills variation action where a deceased parent’s estate was required to pay additional monies to a disabled son who unable to work, survived on a small disability… Read more

Will Varied to Give Daughter Entire Estate

Will Varied to Give Daughter Entire Estate

Hagen-Bourgeault v. Martens 2016 BCSC 1096 varied a will (S. 60 WESA) to give a 25 year old daughter with two young children on social assistance, the entire estate of $2,200 per month until 2025, instead of her husband of two years who was well… Read more

Public Policy Protects Wills Variation Claims

Public Policy Protects Wills Variation Claims

If a will contains a penalty provision, known as a forfeiture clause, threatening to impose a penalty upon a beneficiary if a will is contested, then in that event,  wills variation claims are protected by public policy so that such a clause is not enforceable in… Read more

Marriage Like Relationships

Weber v Leclerc 2015 BCSC 6550 reviewed the law relating to what constitute a marriage like relationship in a matrimonial dispute where the female was against the institution of marriage and opposed such a finding of being in a marriage like relationship.   The parties… Read more