All About Estates

Category: Powers Of Attorney and Guardianship Disputes

Total 34 Posts

Statutory Guardianship of Property vs. a Continuing Power of Attorney for Property: They are not the same!

My June 2017 blog described that most seniors appoint a continuing power of attorney for property (CPOAP), partly to avoid having the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee (OPG&T) assume the role of statutory guardian of property under the Substitute Decisions Act (SDA) or the Mental Health Act (MHA)…

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Undue Influence by “Unwitting Proxy”

Undue influence results in benefits to a beneficiary/donee which would not have occurred except for the undue influence imposed by the beneficiary/donee upon the testator/donor. Undue influence can be conceptualized into two distinct types: (1) “actual” undue influence and (2) “presumed” undue influence. Actual undue influence is concerned with coercive…

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POA: Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place

This blog is written by Sue Norloos, LLB, Will and Estate Planner at Scotiatrust. No one wants to be caught between a rock and a hard place.  It’s awkward and uncomfortable.  Consider the following family scenario: An adult child has benefited from period payments and has also been promised generous…

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Capacity Evaluation of an Expressed Choice

In law, expressed choices are not necessarily a reflection of capable decision making. For example, regarding testamentary capacity, the Ontario Court of Appeal in Hall v. Bennett Estate (2003)[i] stated in paragraphs 15 and 16 that it is not sufficient simply to show that a testator had the capacity to…

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Can We Prevent Elder Abuse?

I had the pleasure of attending last week’s Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners’ conference, titled “Elder Abuse and Manners of Protecting the Elderly”. It focused on financial abuse which is the most common form of elder abuse. It provided an excellent overview with a panel discussion presented and moderated…

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Death, Loss and Hope For Another Year

While the New Year starts in January, Jews around the world celebrate another New Year, the birth of the universe, 5778 years ago based on the Hebrew calendar. While it is the first of the High Holidays, for many who may not attend synagogue, it may still be recognized and…

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What Gets Your Spidey Sense Tingling?

If an older individual was brought to your law office by a non family member and they wanted to appoint the individual as POA for Property and Personal Care, would you be suspicious?  Or what about if the request was to either change a will or to make a will,…

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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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Capacity Assessments and Biases to Beware of

Capacity assessments regarding capacity to manage property, testamentary capacity or capacity to appoint a power of attorney for property (POA), whether conducted contemporaneously or retrospectively, rely upon whatever materials/information that is provided to an assessor to review. Materials may include relevant medical records, previous wills and POA documents, interview of…

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My Best Interests, and Yours Too?

The recent case of Tarantino v. Galvano, 2017 ONSC 3535, raises a variety of issues familiar to estate litigators – powers of attorney, capacity, quantum meruit claims, the duty to account and the rules surrounding the removal of an estate’s executor. In this case the deceased, Rosa Filippo Galvano (“Rosa”) had…

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