Deceased Beneficiary May Claim Wills Variation (WESA)

A Wills Variation Action  ( S. 60 WESA) may Be commenced even after death of Disappointed Beneficiary by his or her personal representative as per Currie Estate v Bowen ( 1989) 35 BCLR (2d) 46. In that case the husband died six weeks before his… Read more

The Executor’s Duties and Powers Under a Will

  Reznik v Matty 2013 BCSC 1346, a wills variation action in BC, has a very succinct summary of the executor’s duties and powers of under a will.     The trial in Reznik was inter alia related to a Wills Variation action where 4… Read more

Winning an Undue Influence Case

In my experience in estate litigation, probably the most difficult issue to win at trial is that of undue influence. A review of case law makes clear the majority of such allegations are dismissed at trial due to insufficient proof. Frequently the court simply finds… Read more

What the Court Needs to Know to Win a Wills Variation Action

S 60 of WESA allows the court to exercise its discretion re the claims of spouses and children against the assets of a deceased’s estate, on the basis that they were not adequately provided for in the estate.   The right to bring a Wills… Read more

Wills Variation Act Not Affected By WESA

The original plan for WESA was to restrict the right of an independent adult child to bring a claim against his or her parents estate on the basis that he or she will was not adequately provided for. A great deal of discussion took place… Read more

Mistakes In Wills and How To Fix Them

    Mistakes in wills are frequently made and then subsequently not discovered until typically many years later after the passing of the will maker. The usual types of mistakes  break into two areas- that the will was not properly executed in accordance with established… Read more

Interest Is Claimable on Lump Sum Wills Variation Awards

While it is much more common for courts to award a percentage of the residue of an estate to a wills variation claimant, it does on occasion occur where the court will order a lump sum award which may include interest..   That is a… Read more

Court Divides Estate Equally Between Son and Neighbours -Wills Variation Act

The Court Divides  Estate Equally Between Disinherited son and a long time friendly neighbour in wills variation action: Moore v. Drummond, 2013 BCSC 1762   [4] The new will, dated January 18, 2010, said : 7. My reasons for providing for my neighbours, CASEY MOORE and CLARA… Read more

Appeal Court Upholds Will Not Specifically Made In Contemplation of Marriage

2010 BCCA 374 MacLean Estate v. Christiansen COURT OF APPEAL FOR BRITISH COLUMBIA Citation: MacLean Estate v. Christiansen, 2010 BCCA 374 For many years, marriage has revoked a will unless the will was made in contemplation of that marriage this has caused untold hardships and… Read more

Where There Is a Cult, There Is Undue Influence

Undue Influence and Cults In recent years there have been a rash of news stories about people who have escaped from various cults, sects, communes or other extremely private organizations ,such as Scientology. Today’s news brings the story of a Marxist commune in South London… Read more

The Doctrine of Ademption By Conversion

  The doctrine of ademption by conversion — a rule of the law of wills whereby a specific bequest “adeems”, or fails, if at the testator’s death the specified property is not found among his or her assets — either because the testator has parted… Read more

Legacies – General or Specific

Re Wood Estate 2004 BCCA 556, contains a good discussion on the differences between general and specific bequests, aka legacies. There are generally two classes of legacies — specific and general. Halsbury’s Laws of England (4th ed. 1998) describes the categories as follows: A specific… Read more

BC Court Rules Sperm Freezer at UBC Was Like a “Warehouse Rental”

  Lam vs the University of British Columbia 2013BCSC 2094, involved a class-action suit brought by hundreds of sperm donors that had stored their sperm with the defendant University, and their sperm was damaged as a result of the sperm freezer malfunctioning. At issue was… Read more

30 Year Commonlaw Spouse Awarded $150,000 More Than His Half of the Assets

Griese v Syvret 2013 BCSC 1601 is a wills very action trial involving a couple that lived in a commonlaw relationship for 30 years before the death of the commonlaw spouse in 2010 at age 84. Her major asset was the matrimonial home which they both… Read more

What Happens to Your Data After You Die?

Reprinted From Forbes Magazine. When you die, you’ll leave behind a digital presence – dead data, or a graveyard in the cloud. The only things certain in life are death and data. Data After You Die? Every year, Facebook cheerfully suggests I reconnect with some friends… Read more