What is a Fiduciary?

by: , June 21, 2021

The term “fiduciary” does not get thrown around frequently outside of some advertisements for investment services. However, fiduciary relationships are at the heart of estate and trust law. What follows is a “Fiduciary FAQ.” What is a fiduciary? A fiduciary is a person who holds some right, power, or authority which, when exercised, impacts the…read more

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

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

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

Fraud’s Cost Consequences

by: , January 18, 2021

At the end of litigation, the unsuccessful party is usually ordered to pay part of the legal fees of the winning party. The ever-present threat of having to pay costs to the winning party can act as a powerful disincentive for making groundless or unsubstantiated claims. The risk of being on the wrong end of…read more

What Happens to My Pet When I Die?

by: , December 14, 2020

For many, the greatest loves of their lives are their furry (or scaly) friends. As a result, there is often a strong desire to make sure they are properly cared for after the testator’s death. How to accomplish this is not always straightforward. In Ontario, animals are considered personal property. This means that you can…read more

Dealing with Squatters in the Family Home

by: , December 9, 2020

This blog was written by Tyler Lin, Student-At-Law As all litigators know, there are two sides to every story. In the world of estate litigation, it is not uncommon for one side to view themselves as an invited guest entitled to remain in the family home while the other side views them as a squatter….read more