Seeking a Litigation Administrator

September 26, 2011 Hull & Hull LLP Estate & Trust Tags: 0 Comments

If an estate does not have an executor or administrator but is nonetheless named as a party in a proceeding, the court may appoint a person to represent the estate for a limited purpose.  A recent case that has considered when a Litigation Administrator ought to be appointed is G.B. v. Fortin [2011] O.J. No. 2576.  In this case, the Plaintiff alleged that the Defendant sexually assaulted him over a number of years while he was a resident in a detention facility. Unbeknownst to the Plaintiff, the Defendant died prior to the commencement of the action.  Accordingly, the Plaintiff requested the court to appoint a litigation administrator for the estate of the deceased Defendant.

The Defendant institution opposed the appointment since the administration of the estate was completed almost nine years ago, and in any event, there was no estate.  They also submitted that the appointment was statute-barred and, further, that the proposed litigation administrator was an inappropriate person to be appointed.The Court stated:

"The defendant argued that the appointment was unreasonable, given that Etienne Fortin left no estate. However, the plaintiff is not motivated by the existence of an estate to satisfy an award of damages, but rather by the possible existence of records.  This is not an unreasonable approach to the litigation.  To the extent that these arguments are all live issues, it is not clear that this action is out of time and as such, a litigation administrator should be appointed…."  

David Morgan Smith – Click here for more information on David Smith

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