Legal Papers

Calmusky v Calmusky – An Update

by: , March 22, 2022

The Superior Court of Justice in Ontario has not followed Calmusky with respect to beneficiary designations.

A Practical Guide to Capacity Assessments in Litigation

by: and , March 21, 2022

The determination of whether a person is incapable is ultimately a legal one not a medical/clinical one. While a report from a certified capacity assessor is not necessarily required, the convention among lawyers and the court is to rely on a capacity assessment as the best evidence of incapacity where capacity is in dispute.

Litigating Intangible Rights: Reputation, Digital Assets, and Endorsement Rights of Influencers

by: and , October 25, 2021

Rapid growths in technology can catalyze changes to the law. But what happens when that growth outpaces legal developments? In this paper, Justin de Vries and Tyler Lin examine the disruptive effects that recent breakthroughs in technology has had on the field of estate litigation. Part I of this paper covers the arrival of the…read more

Moore v Sweet: Unjust Enrichment and Constructive Trusts

The Supreme Court of Canada’s recent decision in Moore v. Sweet provides meaningful clarification on the Canadian law of unjust enrichment and the equitable concept of constructive trusts.

Reigning In Frivolous Will Challenges

by: and , October 13, 2017

In Seepa v. Seepa, Justice Myers declined to grant a consent order for directions in a will challenge case, and instead required the parties to argue the issue on the merits. In order to obtain disclosure and procedural rights in such cases, Justice Myers indicated that bald allegations of lack of testamentary capacity and undue…read more

Recent Estate Cases that made a Difference and Why you Should Care

by: , November 16, 2016

2016 saw the release of numerous interesting and important estates and trusts decisions. Justin de Vries and Joanna Lindenberg have summarized the top cases from the year and explained their impact on estates and trusts law. Starting with a discussion of the Court of Appeal decision in Spence v. BMO Trust Company, this paper also touches on…read more

Passing of Accounts and Business Assets

by: , February 4, 2016

Passing the Trustee’s Accounts When There Are Business Assets At the beneficiaries’ insistence, or at his own initiation, a trustee[i] may apply to court to pass his accounts.  Once in court passing format, the accounts will list the deceased’s assets as of date of death, and trace any subsequent disposition of those assets.  However, where…read more

Case Comment: Re: Estate of Dominico Grillo

by: , April 27, 2015

Can an Ontario litigant bring a will challenge here to set aside a will made in Italy?  This interesting question was recently answered affirmatively by Justice Newbould in the recent decision in Re Estate of Domenico Grillo. Read Angela’s case comment here.

Litigating Estate Disputes With Multi-Jurisdictional Assets

by: , April 22, 2015

In today’s increasingly cosmopolitan world, it is not unusual for someone to own property in more than one jurisdiction.  When a dispute arises with respect to the estate of a deceased with assets in multiple jurisdictions, there are several distinct but related issues that the estate litigator must consider.  First, one must consider which jurisdiction’s…read more

Passing of Accounts – 2013

by: and , November 26, 2014

If a theme were to emerge from the contested passing of accounts cases that were decided in 2013, it would be “protect the innocent”. In some cases, this theme manifested itself in decisions to remove trustees who acted improperly or to surcharge trustees who misappropriated funds. In other cases, judges protected honest (albeit imperfect) fiduciaries…read more