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

Leave to Appeal

Leave to Appeal

The legal test for leave to appeal was restated in Ho Estate v. Ho 2016 BCCA 253 , upheld at 2016 BCCA 378, where the decision of one appeal judge was upheld by a panel when he refused leave to appeal on the basis that… Read more

Entered Court Orders

Entered Court Orders

The Court does not have jurisdiction  to re open entered court orders but may vary the order where has been a change of circumstance. The court refused to re open or vary an entered court order in Sugrim v Sugrim 2016 BCSC 1644 when after entering… 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

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

Claim Dismissed For No Standing

Claim Dismissed For No Standing

Re Tomlinson Estate 2016 BCSC 1223 dealt with a nephew contesting his aunt’s will when he was neither a named beneficiary under the will or an intestate heir had his claim dismissed for lack of standing. Standing is a pre-requisite to advancing claims regarding a… Read more

Settlement Offers and Court Costs

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

Executor Can Be Liable For Unaccounted Expenses

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 held:… Read more

Severance of Court Actions

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 other… Read more

Summary Trial In Court's Discretion

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

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 a good idea for estate… Read more

Burden of Proof In Mental Capacity

Burden of Proof In Mental Capacity

Becker v Becker 2016 BCSC 487 nicely summarizes much of the law relating to mental capacity aka testamentary capacity including the law re the burden of proof in mental capacity cases.  THE  LAW 51      The burden of proving testamentary capacity is on the party propounding… Read more

BC CEAS Is a Wealth of Free Legal Information On Elder Law

The BC Centre For Elder Advocacy and Support (BC CEAS) website contains a Wealth of Free Legal Information on Elder Law Issues.   I have taken the liberty of copying their excellent article on basic Power of Attorney information as an example of the quality… Read more

Court Costs In Estate Litigation

It is very old fashioned thinking that court costs come out of the estate , win or lose, as costs are now an important factor in settlement considerations.   The decision Deuschmann Estate v Fallis  2011 BCSC 1009 at paragraph 95 sets out the general… Read more

Son May Not Inherit For Murdering Mother

Re Fenotti Estate 2014 BCSC 1533 reviewed the law and held that a murderer of the deceased, his mother, son may not inherit from her as a result of public policy that prevents a wrong doer from benefiting from his or her own crime. The personal… Read more