Can an Attorney for Personal Care be Compensated?

by: , June 22, 2020

When the issue of compensation is not specifically addressed in the Power of Attorney for Personal Care, a guardian for personal care may be wondering whether they are entitled to compensation. Legislation, however, does not provide a clear answer. While under the Substitute Decisions Act an attorney for property is expressly allowed to take compensation,…read more

Who makes decisions for me if I become incapable and have not made plans?

by: , April 29, 2020

Before COVID-19, many of us had earmarked 2020 as the year we would get our affairs in order, including preparing powers of attorney for personal care and property. Unfortunately we may have not gotten around to it.  The pandemic has accelerated discussions about intubation, CPR and end of life care.  Additionally, many people, especially those…read more

The LCO Takes on Dispute Resolution and Legal Capacity

by: , February 27, 2020

Ontario’s current legislative regime defining legal capacity and setting the rules for substitute decision-making and guardianship took shape in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Since then, significant demographic, legal, and social changes rendered the existing system inaccessible to all but a few. In their March 2017 final report on Legal Capacity, Decision-making and Guardianship…read more

Home? Or a Retirement Home? The Court Must Decide

by: , April 19, 2016

An elderly woman suffers from dementia. Her two children are both her attorneys for property and personal care. Both have diametrically opposed plans for where she would live. In Walter Burnat v Mary Bosworth et al, 2016 ONSC 2607 (S.C.J.) the court had to decide whether the mother – Olga – would continue to live…read more

Aging Population Brings Greater Risk to Guardianship System

by: , November 27, 2015

An article last month in the Wall Street Journal entitled “Abuse Plagues System of Legal Guardians for Adults” noted a variety of complaints across the United States about guardians of property and personal care. In one nightmarish story, 71-year old Linda McDowell’s former housemate and companion helped file a court petition, unbeknownst to Ms. McDowell, seeking…read more

Nova Scotia repeals “habitual drunkard” law

by: , May 29, 2015

Until earlier this month, Nova Scotia had a statute on the books called the Inebriates’ Guardianship Act, R.S.N.S. 1989, c. 227 which allowed for the court to appoint a guardian over a “habitual drunkard”. While Nova Scotia has other statutes which allow the Court to appoint a guardian for a person found to be incapable,…read more

An Unwelcome Guest – Guardian of Property Obtains a Writ of Possession

by: , May 27, 2014

In 1998, Ms. Tollis was declared incapable of managing her property.  In the same year, the Public Guardian and Trustee (the “PGT”) became her statutory guardian of property.  Ms. Tollis held an interest in a house along with her brother, Mr. Tollis.  The interest in the house was Ms. Tollis’ primary financial asset. Shortly before…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

When A Custody Battle Turns into Competing Guardianship Applications

by: , December 6, 2013

In a recent Ontario case, divorced parents each sought sole guardianship of their mentally incapable adult daughter. The parents, who divorced in the 1980s, were unable to work together as joint guardians of their 42 years old mentally incapable daughter (“Isabella”). While both parents, who are now in their 70s, agreed that it would be ideal…read more

If There is a Valid POA, the Court Cannot Order a Guardianship

by: , September 30, 2013

The recent decision in Lehtonen v. Neill serves as a useful reminder of the sometimes overlooked subsection 22(3) of the Substitute Decisions Act.   This provision prohibits the court from appointing a guardian where the court is satisfied that decision making for the incapable person can be met by a less intrusive means.  It says: The Court shall not…read more