Featured Articles

Powers Of Attorney For Management Of Property, And For Personal Care

Typically when we do wills we ask our clients if they have current powers of attorney. There are two types of powers of attorney in Ontario. One is called the Continuing Power of Attorney for Management of Property. In this document you appoint one or more individuals to make decisions for you concerning your financial matters, your property, banks... » Read this article

Joint Tenancy And Estate Planning In Canada

There is no death tax per se in Canada, but there are probate taxes that arise on death if the will has to be probated, that is formally certified by the Court as the deceased’s last will. The most popular self-help, estate planning tool for probate avoidance is putting beneficiaries on as joint tenants, on your house or bank account or investment... » Read this article

Denying a Benefit = Protecting the Client

While researching yesterday’s blog on the Brooke Astor estate, I stumbled upon a number of legal blogs on the Astor guardianship dispute. Several of these including this one noted that the lawyer for Astor had come under scrutiny during the guardianship dispute. The issue was whether the lawyer himself played a role in unduly influencing Astor... » Read this article

When is Estate Litigation Newsworthy?

The recent death of socialite Brooke Astor at the age of 105 has created a media circus in New York City. Variously described as a “civic leader”, “philanthropist” and “high society fixture,” Astor was often quoted as coining the phrase “money is like manure, it should be spread around.” And Astor had... » Read this article

Luck of the Irish?

Every so often, a case comes before the Court which seems to clearly captivate the presiding judge, has historical resonance, and just makes for interesting reading. Re Connolly Estate (2007) 31 E.T.R. (3d) 81, a decision of the Prince Edward Island Trial Division, is such a case. Here, Justice D.H. Jenkins considered the interpretation of the Will... » Read this article

Musings on Executor's Compensation

While it may understandably seem that the issue of executor’s compensation has been considered ad nauseum by the estates bar, every case seems to present something unique in its fact situation that will give the Court pause to consider the appropriate quantum. Take, for instance, the recent (April 23, 2007) case of O’Sullivan v. O’Sullivan [2007]... » Read this article

Keeping the Court Informed

Typically, at the beginning of each day in motions courts, the sitting Judge purges the list of matters scheduled to be heard that day; that is the Judge goes through the list to see which matters are on consent, those that are not opposed and those in which the parties wish to proceed. With the latter matters, the Judge may inquire as to the amount... » Read this article

Fact is Stranger than Fiction? Legally Adopting your Wife in Maine

A rather unique estate battle is unfolding in Maine and Connecticut as reported on February 26, 2007 by the Associated Press. Olive Watson took the unusual step of legally adopting her same sex partner, Patricia Spado, some fifteen years ago as a means of ensuring for Spado’s financial security and presumably to guarantee the provisions of Watson’s... » Read this article

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