All About Estates

Category: Family Conflict

Total 120 Posts

Estate Planning and Family Law: The Matrimonial Home Part II

In a prior blog, I began a discussion of the use of marriage contracts as part of an integrated estate plan to preserve and protect family wealth. In particular, that blog began a discussion of the legal regime that governs a “matrimonial home” under the Ontario Family Law Act (“FLA”),…

Continue Reading

You Better Think (Think)…About the Estate Planning Process

This blog was written by Lara Besharat In August 2018, renowned singer Aretha Franklin died of pancreatic cancer in her home in Detroit, leaving behind an illustrious musical legacy, a strong history of civil rights activism, four children, and an estimated $80-million-dollar fortune. One thing she didn’t leave behind, however,…

Continue Reading

It Ain’t Over Til It’s Over*

A “passing of accounts” refers to the process of formally preparing and presenting accounts to the beneficiaries and the court. The accounts are either approved (i.e., “passed”) in the form presented, amended by court order and passed in revised form, or not passed because the court is not satisfied with…

Continue Reading

Some Thoughts on Explaining Differences in Expert Opinions

Experts giving evidence in an Ontario court are obliged to sign an acknowledgement that they are independent, with their obligation being to the court and not to the party who retained them. Nonetheless, scepticism regarding objectiveness and discrepancies between expert opinions remains, as demonstrated in the reasons of Justice Mesbur…

Continue Reading

Passing of Accounts –Made to Measure (Law)Suits

A passing of accounts is the process whereby an estate trustee (or other fiduciary) provides the beneficiaries with a summary of all estate assets, liabilities, and transactions, in a given period. A passing of accounts can be done informally or through a court application. It provides transparency to the beneficiaries…

Continue Reading

Understanding the Role of Section 3 Counsel

The recent case of Sylvester v. Britton, 2018 ONSC 6620 (“Sylvester”) provides an excellent review of the law regarding incapacity, attorneys for property and personal care, capacity assessments, and other issues which often arise in estate/capacity litigation cases. While the decision addresses many interesting points, this blog will focus upon…

Continue Reading

When Cash is not King?

Most people keep their cash in bank accounts. However, to my surprise, some people still don’t, and for estate planning and administration purposes, this can be a real problem. Take the case of Temple v. Peddle, 2019 NLCA 2 in Newfoundland Labrador. Mrs. Peddle kept cash in a safe deposit…

Continue Reading

Estate Applied to Have Filings Made by Taxpayer Lacking Mental Capacity Set Aside

In Ntakos Estate v. The Queen, 2018 TCC 224, a family business was owned by the deceased taxpayer, Anna (after her husband passed away in 1995) with two brothers-in-law through a holding corporation. Anna’s mental and physical health declined from 1995 until her death in 2004. She was diagnosed in…

Continue Reading

Choosing an Appropriate Age for Young Beneficiaries to Inherit

This Blog was written by: Daniel Watts, Estate and Trust Consultant, Scotiatrust   A very common issue that arises in estate planning, especially when the clients have young children, is deciding when an appropriate age is for the children to receive their inheritance. Prior to this age, the inheritance will…

Continue Reading

To Remove or Not to Remove… That is the Question (with apologies to the bard)

Estates tell a million stories and the case of Ford v Mazman, 2019 ONSC 542, is just one of them. Mary died on April 3, 2017. Mary’s 2004 Will named her two nieces, Laura and Carleen, as sole beneficiaries. Mary appointed her close friend, Seta, as her estate trustee/executor. Laura…

Continue Reading