Tag: Noah Weisberg

02 Jul

Thoughts About Art

Noah Weisberg Executors and Trustees, In the News Tags: , , , , , , , , , , 0 Comments

With so much taking place around us now, I forced myself to choose a topic for today’s blog that, although still estates related (this being, after all, an estates blog), allows me to think about something beautiful.  I landed on art.

Full disclosure: I have blogged about art and estates before.  See here and here for some shameless self-promotion.  Without wanting to revisit these topics, I did some searching and was intrigued by this Financial Times article about the Art Loss Register (ALR).

The ALR is the world’s largest private database for lost and stolen art, antiques, and collectibles.  Their services are essentially twofold.  First, the ALR assists to deter the theft of art by promoting the registration of all items of valuable possession on its database and also the expansion of checking searches.  Second, by operating a due diligence service to sellers of art, the ALR operates a recovery service to return works of art to their rightful owners.  In addition, the ALR has expanded to negotiate compensation to the victims of art theft and the legitimising of current ownership.

In addition to art dealers, insurers, and museums, the ALR also assists private individuals including beneficiaries and trustees.  A trustee who is intending to liquidate art may wish to rely on the ALR to prove title and authenticity, thereby potentially increasing value and mitigating risk of fraud.

Noah Weisberg

If you find this topic to be interesting, please consider these other related blogs:

30 Jun

Changes to Consent and Capacity Board Coverage

Noah Weisberg Capacity, In the News Tags: , , , , , , , , , 0 Comments

Legal Aid Ontario has published a notice setting out changes to coverage for Consent and Capacity Board appeals.

Effective June 23, 2020, Legal Aid Ontario is making the following changes to its certificate coverage:

    1. an additional 10 hours will be offered to the current 25 hours allocated on the CCB appeal tariff. This increases total coverage to 35 hours
  1. a new 10-hour certificate for motions for emergency/urgent CCB treatment orders held in the Superior Court is being introduced

The full notice can be found here.

If you have applied for CCB appeal coverage from March 13 onward, Legal Aid Ontario will be contacting you regarding the notice.  If you have not heard from Legal Aid Ontario, you should contact them directly.

Any attempt to increase access to justice, is always welcome.

Noah Weisberg

If you find this blog interesting,  please  consider these other related blogs:

29 Jun

Don’t Worry Be Happy

Noah Weisberg Capacity, Health / Medical Tags: , , , , , , 0 Comments

Yes, you’re reading this blog on a Monday.  As week days go, Monday isn’t nearly as fun as a Thursday, or Friday.  But that doesn’t mean you should be unhappy.  A recent study purports that repetitive negative thinking is linked to cognitive decline.

The authors of the study propose that repetitive negative thinking may be a new risk factor for dementia.  Based on various tests, the study found that when compared to non-pessimists, people who think negatively have a greater buildup of certain proteins in the brain that cause Alzheimer’s disease (the most common type of dementia), a worse memory, and greater cognitive decline.

Based on this correlation, it is believed important to think happy thoughts.  Whether you are a glass half empty or half full kind of person, the brain can be trained to be more optimistic.  This can be done in a number of ways, including:

  • meditating – one study found that only 30 minutes a day over a two week period produced a measurable change in the brain
  • practicing gratefulness – taking a few minutes each day to write down what you are thankful for
  • reframing negative thoughts –changing your perspective on a situation to give more of a positive or beneficial meaning to you

As Bobby McFerrin sings, ‘In every life we have some trouble / But when you worry you make it double / Don’t worry, be happy / Don’t worry, be happy now’.

Happy Monday,

Noah Weisberg

If you find this blog interesting, please consider these other related blogs:

09 Jun

Hull on Estates #591 – Accounting obligations and Passing of Accounts during the COVID-19 pandemic

76admin Hull on Estate and Succession Planning, Hull on Estates, Hull on Estates, Podcasts, Show Notes, Uncategorized Tags: , , , , , 0 Comments

This week on Hull on Estates, Noah Weisberg and Nick Esterbauer discuss continued accounting obligations during the COVID-19 pandemic and procedural considerations relating to fresh and pre-existing applications to pass accounts.

Should you have any questions, please email us at webmaster@hullandhull.com or leave a comment on our blog.

Click here for more information on Noah Weisberg.

Click here for more information on Nick Esterbauer.

02 Apr

Update Regarding CRA Filing Deadlines and COVID-19

Noah Weisberg Uncategorized Tags: , , , , , , , , 0 Comments

Last week, Paul Trudelle blogged about CRA’s announcement regarding filing deadlines in light of the COVID-19 crisis.  Since then, a further announcement has been made. 

As it relates to the administration of an estate:

  • the Estate’s T3 tax return is now due on June 1, 2020 instead of April 14, 2020.  Tax payments owed by a trust remain deferred until September 1, 2020
  • the filing of an individual’s tax return remains uncertain as mentioned in Paul’s blog

Information is changing daily.  If the above applies to you, or an estate that you are responsible for, you should contact a professional accountant and/or monitor the CRA website.

Stay safe and wash your hands,

Noah Weisberg

Please click on this link to see our COVID-19 related resources.

01 Apr

What Legal Resources Are Available During COVID-19?

Noah Weisberg Continuing Legal Education, In the News Tags: , , , , , , 0 Comments

There are numerous resources available to estates and trusts lawyers to help them navigate their practice during these COVID-19 times.  As there does not yet seem to be one amalgamated repository, I thought I would use today’s blog to highlight some sites that I tend to be frequenting:

The Law Society of Ontario

The LSO has created an easy to read list of FAQs.  Certain questions that I have found particularly helpful include: the requirements regarding commissioning an affidavit, including affidavits of service; the use of virtual means to identify or verify the identity of a client; whether virtual means can be used to assess a client’s capacity; and, what are the best practices for using video conferencing in providing legal advice or services.

LawPRO

LawPRO is continuing to update avoidaclaim.com.  Given that new claims reports continue to come in at pre-crisis numbers, lawyers must remind themselves that although the physical location of their practice may have changed, the level of service provided must not.

Hull & Hull LLP

If you are reading this blog, you are probably already aware of the comprehensive resources being provided by Hull & Hull LLP, which can be found here.  If not, we are covering everything from estate planning to estate litigation, including the execution of wills and how to have litigious matters heard by presiding judges.

Ontario Bar Association

The OBA has set up a COVID-19 Action Centre.  While helpful information continues to be provided, I find myself continually looking forward to their ‘mindful moments’ which arrive daily in my inbox.

Non-Legal Resources

Some non-legal helpful resources include: a free website to verify the validity of an Ontario Driver’s License; how to use the document scanner on your iPhone/iPad ; and, Zoom tips.

Stay safe and wash your hands,

Noah Weisberg

If you consider this topic interesting, please consider these other related sites:

30 Mar

The Trustee’s Duty to Invest During COVID-19

Noah Weisberg Executors and Trustees Tags: , , , , , , , 0 Comments

There is so much in flux right now due to COVID-19.  In the area of estates and trusts though, the obligations that an estate trustee owes to beneficiaries remains stable.  During this time, estate trustees need to consider how best to administer an estate, and what they should be doing to limit future claims against them.  The purpose of today’s blog is to consider the estate trustee’s duty to invest.

According to section 27(1) of the Trustee Act, “In investing trust property, a trustee must exercise the care, skill, diligence and judgment that a prudent investor would exercise in making investments”.  This is often referred to as the prudent investor rule.  Section 27(5) sets out certain criteria the trustee is required to consider in investing trust property, including, amongst other things, the general economic conditions and the possibility of inflation or deflation.

Given the current market fluctuations, estate trustees need to give invested trust property considered attention.  While they cannot be expected to produce resounding returns for the beneficiaries, they can take steps to make sure their investments are prudent in the circumstances and avoid future claims from beneficiaries.  These could include claims that the estate trustee failed to properly invest trust assets or that they failed to exercise their discretion.

The estate trustee should consider doing at least four things.  First, they should review the terms of the will as to whether there are any specific investment requirements.  Second, they should contact their investment advisor to obtain professional advice and share any relevant terms of the will.  Third, the estate trustee should ask the investment advisor to put their advice/comments in writing and the estate trustee should hold on to this.  Fourth, if the trustee is afforded some sort of discretion (for instance, considering the interests of capital versus income beneficiaries), the trustee should prepare a memorandum to themselves.  The memorandum should set out the reasons why they reached the investment decision that they did and the factors they considered, which should include the section 27(5) criteria.

Stay safe and wash your hands,

Noah Weisberg

Please click on this link to see our COVID-19 related resources,  as well as these related blogs:

21 Jan

Hull on Estates #587 – Re Vaudrey: The Importance of Properly Providing for a Gift of Residue

76admin Hull on Estate and Succession Planning, Hull on Estate and Succession Planning, Hull on Estates, Show Notes, Wills Tags: , , , , 0 Comments

On today’s podcast, Noah Weisberg and Rebecca Rauws discuss the recent decision of Re Vaudrey, 2019 ONSC 7551. In that case, the testator tried to disinherit one of his daughters, but failed to make provision in his Will for the disposition of the residue of his estate in the event that the residuary beneficiaries predeceased him (which they did). Without this, the residue of the testator’s estate was distributed on an intestacy—entirely to the daughter that he had wished to disinherit.

Should you have any questions, please email us at webmaster@hullandhull.com or leave a comment on our blog.

Click here for more information on Noah Weisberg.

Click here for more information on Rebecca Rauws.

02 Jan

Feeling Good into 2020

Noah Weisberg Estate Planning, General Interest, In the News, Uncategorized, Wills Tags: , , , , , , , , , , 0 Comments

It is the start of a new year and a new decade.  Many of us recently enjoyed some holidays and had much to eat and drink.  Many of us are also feeling the lingering effects of this merriment.  I figured that an uplifting, feel good read would be a nice way to start 2020.  I was thus delighted to learn about Eva Gordon, and her estate.

Ms. Gordon passed away at the age of 105.  She grew up on an orchard in Oregon, never graduated from college, and worked as a trading assistant at an investment firm in Seattle.  In 1964, she married her husband, who was a stockbroker.  They did not have any children together.  Neither Ms. Gordon or her husband came from money, and they lived a modest life.  Ms. Gordon’s godson, who was the Estate Trustee, joked that if Ms. Gordon and her husband went out for lunch or dinner, then they would make sure to bring their Applebee’s coupon.

From the salary that Ms. Gordon received from her employer, she purchased partial shares in numerous stocks, including oil and utility companies, and was an early investor in Nordstrom, Microsoft, and Starbucks.  Unlike many at that time, Ms. Gordon held onto these valuable stocks.  As a result of this shrewd investing, Ms. Gordon’s wealth increased considerably over the latter years of her life.

Instead of wasting away her money, in her Will, Ms. Gordon decided to bequeath $10 million to various community colleges, with about 17 colleges each receiving cheques for $550,000.  Interestingly, no stipulations were put into place as to how the money was to be spent by the colleges.  The colleges could do with the money as they wished.  For many of them, it was one of the largest donations they had ever received.

For an interesting perspective on the impact of donations to modest, as opposed to elite, institutions, you should listen to Malcolm Gladwell’s Revisionist History podcast (episode 6).

Noah Weisberg

If you find this blog interesting, please consider these other related blogs:

31 Dec

Champagne Poppin’ & Will Plannin’

Noah Weisberg Estate Planning, New Years Resolutions Tags: , , , , 0 Comments

It is the end of 2019.  I therefore of course feel the need to use this blog to urge you to resolve to either make a will if you do not already have one, or, if you already have one, to review your current estate plan to see if it requires updating.

Why the urgency you might ask?  The answer lies in the most festive of NYE tipples – champagne!

Apparently, approximately 24 people die annually from being hit by champagne corks.  In fact, it has been alleged that more people die as a result of being hit by a champagne cork, than from poisonous spiders.  This article highlights the death of a Hong Kong billionaire by champagne while celebrating his 50th birthday.  As he opened a celebratory bottle of champagne, the cork hit the businessman in the temple causing a fatal brain hemorrhage.  His death was confirmed on the way to the hospital.

Champagne corks as a cause of death have received much doubt and there have been steps to debunk as a ‘myth’.  For instance, according to this article, the average rate at which a champagne cork exits a bottle is about 24.8 miles per hour.  In extreme circumstances, if there was up to 3 bars of pressure, a cork could reach speeds of 60 miles per hour.  Regardless, these speeds are not enough to cause a cork to be deadly.

 

So, while death by a champagne cork may not be a valid reason to urge you to consider your estate plan, there are many other good reasons as discussed in these related Hull & Hull blogs:

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Noah Weisberg

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