All About Estates

Gillian Fournie

Total 22 Posts Website

Gillian is a lawyer with de VRIES LITIGATION LLP. Her practice focuses on the area of trusts and estates litigation.

Lost Wills – More Complicated than Losing Your Keys

Nobody is perfect – sometimes you lose your keys. Other times you lose your will. The problem is, by the time your estate trustee realizes the will is gone, you won’t be around to help look for it. The inability to find a testator’s will does not automatically result in…

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The Living Hands that Control the Graves

As a law student, my trust law professor brought in a “dead hand” to help us remember the rule against perpetuities. The prop was effective: I have not forgotten that the rule stops trust property from being governed indefinitely from “beyond the grave.” While principles of trust law helpfully prevent…

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Consolidate, for Efficiency’s Sake!

The 2014 Supreme Court decision, Hryniak v Mauldin, directly addressed the need to increase access to justice. In that case, the Supreme Court clarified and broadened a court’s fact-finding powers on summary judgment motions with the goal of providing litigants a faster procedure in appropriate cases. In the same spirit,…

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Triumph of the Trustee Act

You may be forgiven for thinking that the expression “clear as mud” was created specifically to describe limitation periods. The policy rationale behind limitation periods is to create certainty and predictability by establishing a firm deadline by which a claim must be brought or else the claim is lost forever….

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Friends Helping Friends – Then Forgetting About It

When asking a friend for a financial favour, people often fail to document their actions and decisions as thoroughly as they should – the trust people have in their friends frequently translates into a belief that they do not need to pay attention. Regardless of whether the trust was deserved,…

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Issue Estoppel – Stopping a Second Kick at the Can

The discovery of holographic wills always send up red flags to estates litigators, especially when the holographic will is a dramatic departure from the prior distribution of the estate. While questions of fraud immediately come to mind, there may also be a limitations problem if the holographic will is found…

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Medical Emergency Cards – A Logical Follow-up to POAPCs

As regular readers know, we occasionally invite guest bloggers to contribute to All About Estates  Today’s blog was written by Norman Bowley, a partner and chair of the Estates and Succession Group at Low Murchison Radnoff LLP . In my wallet you will find a plastic card the size of a credit…

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The OPGT and the Case of the Missing Estate Trustee

As regular readers of this blog well know, not everyone dies with a will. When this happens, the Succession Law Reform Act (Part II) sets out who are the beneficiaries of the estate, while the Estates Act (section 29) ranks in order of priority who may apply to be estate…

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Don’t Look a Gift House in the Mouth

“A resulting trust arises when title to property is in one party’s name, but that party, because he or she is a fiduciary or gave no value for the property, is under an obligation to return it to the original title owner.” Pecore v Pecore (SCC). In 1969, Luisa immigrated…

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When Business Agreements Masquerade as Trusts

Trusts are tricky – they can arise in circumstances where none of the parties involved ever use the word “trust.” There is good reason for this; often the settlor of the trust and the trustee are laypeople who can describe the type of relationship they wish to create, but are…

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