Daughter Awarded $5.5 Million
The Wilson v Lougheed Estate case, 2010 BCSC 1868 is one of a few cases only in BC that deal with a large wills variation award in favour of a disinherited child, that involved a very large estate
The plaintiff was a 47 year old only child of the deceased who was left 1.4% of her mother’s $20 million dollar estate under her will.
The husband, who was the source of most of the wealth, received the balance of her estate, plus assets worth $6.5 million outside of the estate, to give him total assets of $50 million.
He had adopted the plaintiff as a young child.
The plaintiff had received $2 million in income from the family trust over the previous 20 years, and had joint assets of $1 million with her husband. She had been a stay at home mother and lacked education and work experience.
In long and detailed reasons for judgement, Madam Justice Ballance found that the deceased had failed in her moral duty to provide for her only child in a manner ” consistent with her pattern of ensuring a lifestyle of financial security and privilege while she was alive.”
Accordingly, the Court varied the will to add a specific bequest of $5.5 million dollars.
This is one of the largest, if not the largest, Wills Variation award ever made in BC for a child of the deceased, and shows a trend of the Court to award significant variations in wills relating to large estates, where the facts make it appropriate to do so.