The Man with Two Lives: a complicated intestacy

by: , May 10, 2021

Background – The Man with Two Lives   The deceased, Michael Widner, died unexpectedly in 2017. He was the victim of a homicide. In the words of Duncan J., he left behind a “complicated legacy”. At the time of his death, he was married to both the defendant, Sabrina Widner, and was also in a…read more

Involving the PGT in Guardianship and Estate Matters

by: , May 4, 2021

Guardianship and estate disputes often present complex family dynamics touching upon a myriad of issues. Where the interests of an incapable adult are involved in litigation, the office of the Public Guardian and Trustee (the “PGT”) becomes involved. By way of background, the PGT functions in accordance with the Public Guardian and Trustee Act and…read more

Can I Charge My Brother Rent For Living in Dad’s Home?

by: , April 26, 2021

In many estates, the family home is the most valuable asset. It can also be the most costly to maintain – mortgage payments, utilities, property taxes, and insurance all have to be kept current until the house is sold. Unfortunately, selling the deceased’s house is a lot more complicated when there is someone living in…read more

20 Notable Cases of 2020

by: , April 25, 2021

It’s that time of year again. Birds are singing, trees are blossoming, and spring is just around the corner. With 2020 fully in the rear-view mirror, now is the perfect time for a review of 20 notable cases decided in that year. (Okay, it’s technically 23 cases, but who’s counting?) The Sherman Estate trilogy: Our…read more

If My Spouse Died Without a Will, Do I Inherit the Whole Estate?

by: , April 19, 2021

When a person dies without a Will, or “intestate”, the division of that person’s estate in Ontario is governed by the Succession Law Reform Act (“SLRA”). When a legally married (not cohabiting) spouse dies without a Will, the surviving spouse does not necessarily inherit all of the estate under the SLRA. The distribution depends on…read more

Cautionary Tales on Digital Estate Asset Planning

by: , March 15, 2021

The Age of Digital Assets  A collage of from the artist Mike Winkelmann, better known as Beeple, has recently sold for $69 million dollars. This marks the first purely digital work of art ever offered by a major auction house. However, what was sold is not art in the traditional sense. There are numerous copies…read more

A Tale of Two Suicide Notes

by: , March 8, 2021

2020 was an unusual year. Not only was there a global pandemic, but by sheer coincidence there was not one, but two estates applications in different provinces to determine whether a suicide note was a valid will. While the suicide note in Ontario was not found to be a valid Will, the one in British…read more

Compensation for Attorneys for Personal Care

by: , March 2, 2021

Today’s blog was written by Tyler Lin, student-at-law Good Deeds Deserve Fair Rewards: Daniel Estate (Re) and Ontario’s Common Law Scheme for Compensation for Attorneys for Personal Care Last year, I wrote a blog exploring the theme of whether bad deeds deserve punishment in dependant support claims (the answer: not always). This blog explores whether…read more

New Amendments to Increase Amount Payable to Parents of Minors Without Guardianship Appointment

by: , February 24, 2021

Under Ontario law, a child cannot receive money owed to them (such as from an inheritance) until reaching the age of majority. Moreover, a parent cannot receive money owed to a child without obtaining a court order appointing the parent as the child’s guardian for property. However, s. 51(1.1) of the Children’s Law Reform Act (“CLRA”) provides…read more

Ontario Welcomes New Tort of Internet Harassment

by: , February 17, 2021

This blog was written by Tyler Lin, Student-At-Law Ontario tort law has come a long way from its common law heritage days of the snail in a ginger beer. As modern society continues to evolve concurrently with the internet, the law has been striving to keep up. Any tool can be used for good or…read more