Corroborative Evidence of Deceased’s Actions

by: , March 16, 2015

In P.M. v. Evangelista 2015 ONSC 1419 (CanLII), the court grappled with the requirement of corroboration in sexual assault claims where the defendant had died during the course of the litigation. P.M. claimed damages against the defendant Livia Evangelista, who was the administrator of the Estate of Luigi Evangelista, for sexual assaults, threatening, and harassment….read more

Creativity Can Kill: Striking Out Pleadings

by: , January 30, 2015

A decision of the Ontario Superior Court, Catford v. Catford 2014 ONSC 135 demonstrates the importance of getting pleadings right. In this case, the plaintiff sued his niece for “$670,000 or such other sum as may represent one-third of the Catford family estate”. The facts pled in support of this claim was that the plaintiff’s…read more

Adding Parties And Dependant’s Support

by: , September 17, 2014

Can individuals who may have an obligation to support a person making a dependant’s support claim against an estate be added as parties to the support claim? That was the question before the court in Brash v. Zyma. The short answer? Yes. In 2012, Charles Douglas Brash died. At the time of his death, he had…read more

You’ve Got…No Spam Anymore! Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation

by: , June 20, 2014

What is Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation? – You’ve probably been receiving a lot of emails lately asking for your consent to receive further electronic messages. – These emails arise from new Canadian legislation with the not-so-memorable full title, “An Act to promote the efficiency and adaptability of the Canadian economy by regulating certain activities that discourage reliance…read more

You Can’t Have It All: Hybrid Trials, Limited Discovery, and Modest Estates

by: , May 8, 2014

Lorraine Coombs died on April 27, 2012, leaving an estate worth approximately $756,249.00.  Her Last Will and Testament left her house and the residue of her estate to one of her four daughters, Susan Coombs (“Susan”).  Two of her other daughters, Diane Fergueson (“Diane”) and Charlene Coombs (“Charlene”), each received $60,000 and another daughter, Donna…read more

Costs and Proportionality: Marcus v. Cochrane 2014 ONCA 207

by: , March 26, 2014

The Ontario Court of Appeal’s decision in Marcus v. Cochrane (released March 20, 2014) provides a clear statement of the court’s willingness to take a hard look at the proportionality of costs awards, and reduce costs substantially, if necessary. The appeal arose out of a claim that Louise Marcus (“Marcus”) brought against her former lawyer, Carol Ann…read more

A Wedding, A Will Signing, and a Witness

by: , January 16, 2014

In Zerbinati v. Zerbinati 2013 CanLII 86428 (ON SC), the respondents to an application for the determination of the validity of the last will and testament of Valentino Mario Zerbinati (“Valentino”) brought a motion for “non-suit” on the grounds that the formal validity of Valentino’s Will had not been established. The applicants were the testator’s son, Valentino…read more

Conflict of Laws and Guardianship

by: , December 27, 2013

Cariello v. Father Michele Perrella 2013 ONSC 7605, a guardianship proceeding heard by Justice Mesbur, is a poignant read, particularly at this time of year when people oft-express a desire to go “home for the holidays”. Born in Italy in 1933, Fr. Perrella became an ordained priest in the Roman Catholic Church and he was “incardinated”…read more

Proper Lawyer Behaviour on Discovery, in the Age of Rob Ford

by: , November 20, 2013

Examinations for discovery can afford an excellent opportunity to determine the strength of the opposing party’s position. The discovery process also provides a chance to see a lawyer’s oral advocacy skills in action. But sometimes, a lawyer’s behaviour has the effect of disrupting the discovery process. In Tondera v. Vukadinovic, 2013 ONSC 6888 (CANLii), defence counsel…read more

When Will A Court Order a Mental Examination?

by: , October 17, 2013

In what circumstances will a court order a plaintiff to undergo a mental examination to determine whether she is a party under a legal disability who has to be represented by a litigation guardian? This was one of the issues for the court to determine in the recent Ontario case of 626381 Ontario Limited et al….read more