Severance of Joint Tenancies

The severance of joint tenancies is an increasingly important issue in estate litigation and can occur without the registered joint owners even knowing it if their conduct is inconsistent with joint ownership.   We often assume that property, registered in joint tenancy, will automatically pass… Read more

Wrongful Death Damages Fail To Provide For Grief

Wrongful Death Damages Fail To Provide For Grief and Emotional Injury in BC One of the glaring inequities in wrongful death claims in British Columbia is the failure of our legislation to provide authorization for the courts to make an award for compensation for individual grief… Read more

Wrongful Death Claims – Loss of Financial Support

Wrongful Death Claims Yesterday I blogged about the Family Compensation Act of British Columbia which allows a spouse, parent, or child of a person whose death has been caused by the wrongful act negligence or default of another, to sue for compensation. There are several… Read more

Wrongful Death Claims and The Family Compensation Act

Tegemann v. Pasemko 2007 BCSC 1062 is a good case example of the principles for compensation under the Family Compensation act of British Columbia. In this particular case the deceased was a 50-year-old mother, who is survived by her husband aged 49 at the time… Read more

Capacity To Make a Will

Capacity To Make a Will   A person making a Will must understand:   The nature of the act of making a Will: a. That he will die; b. That the Will will come into operation on his death, but not before; and c. That… Read more

Do NOT Put Your Kids On Title Of Your Home

No Children On the Title Of Your Home After witnessing parents putting their children on title to their home as joint tenants for over 40 years, I have emphatically concluded that in almost every instance is a bad idea. While it sounds so simple that… Read more

Forced Sale of Jointly Owned Property

Forced Sale of Jointly Owned Property In Mowat v Dudas 2012 BCSC 454, the court exercised its discretion to refuse an order for a forced-sale of the Cypress Gardens condo development of 177 units owned by 135 different owners. Each was a co-owner of the… Read more

Mental Health Withdraws Support For Psychiatrists DSM-5

 Mental Health and The Controversial DSM5 Psychiatrists like to put labels on mental disorders and use the DSM for such use.The new DSM-5 seems to be causing controversy within the mental health business.Considering that not long ago, the DSM classified such things as homosexuality as… Read more

Joint Property Owners Can Force Sale

The Partition of Property Act   Joint owners of property whether as joint tenants or tenants in common can force a sale of the property using the Partition of Property act. It is common for parties to purchase properties together and register the property jointly,… Read more

Mental Capacity Required to Live Apart From Spouse Is Low, While Capacity to Instruct a Lawyer Is High

Fuhr ( Litigation Guardian of) v. Tingey 2013 BCSC 711 dealt with the issues of whether a claimant had sufficient mental capacity to instruct counsel in divorce proceedings. the claimant died before trial, and while the issue then became moor, the Court provided reason for… Read more

Testator Must Know General Value of Assets to Have Mental Capacity

Mental Capacity and Knowing the Value of  Testators Assets Part of the criteria in proving mental capacity of a testator involves showing that the testator understood the nature and the extent of the property being disposed of by the will. The question that is often… Read more

The Doctrine of “Suspicious Circumstances” In Mental Capacity Cases

Justice Ballance’s reasons for judgement in Laszlo v Lawton 2013 BCSC 305 contain a concise summary of this area of the law: 200] In Vout v. Hay, [1995] 2 S.C.R. 876 [Vouf\, the Supreme Court of Canada laid to rest the thread of confusion that… Read more

Almost Everything You Need To Know About Testamentary ( Mental) Capacity

Testamentary  ( Mental) Capacity The decision Laszlo v Lawton et al 2013 BCSC 305 is a series of stellar reasons for Judgement by Madam Justice Ballance, including a thorough review of the law of testamentary capacity. The deceased died in 2008 at age 84 years,… Read more

Joint Tenancy Transfer Between Parent and One Child Set Aside

Turner vTurner 2010 BCSC deals with a common thorny issue in estate litigation. In 1996 the deceased parent put title to her home into joint tenancy with one of her two children. The deceased died in 2007 leaving a will that left the sale proceeds… Read more

Will Upheld- No Suspicious Circumstances

Validity of a Will and Suspicious Circumstances Maddess v Racz 2009 BCCA 539 is a testamentary capacity case where the trial judge and the court of appeal both uphold the validity of a will and find no suspicious circumstances that would rebutt the presumption of… Read more