Tag: section

31 Mar

Lapse and Anti-Lapse

Hull & Hull LLP Estate & Trust Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , 0 Comments

I regularly tutor students who are preparing to write the Estate and Trust section of the Solicitor’s exam for the Law Society. One of the more common questions that my students ask is for help in explaining two concepts: lapse and the “anti-lapse provision”.

The common definition of a lapsed gift, is a gift that has failed because it is incapable of taking effect.   Two common reasons for a gift to be incapable of taking effect is where the beneficiary predeceases the testator or the gift is disclaimed by the beneficiary.  

 

Pursuant to Section 23 of the Succession Law Reform Act, unless a contrary intention appears in the Deceased’s Will, if a gift is incapable of taking effect, the failed gift will fall into the residue of the testator’s estate and distributed accordingly.

 

Section 31 of the Succession Law Reform Act is commonly referred to as the anti-lapse provision. The anti-lapse provision saves a failed gift if the beneficiary falls into the class of beneficiaries set-out under this provision and that beneficiary leaves a spouse or issue who survived the testator. If these conditions are met, the gift will not fall into the residue, however it will take effect as if it had been made directly to the spouse or issue of predeceased beneficiary.

 

Thank you for reading, and have a great day.

Rick Bickhram – Click here for more information on Rick Bickhram.

30 Mar

Appointing an Estate Trustee During Litigation

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In a recent court decision, the Honourable Justice Stinson considered a motion from competing family members for the appointment of an estate trustee during litigation.

In Buswa v. Canzoneri, the Deceased died without a Will on September 29, 2010. The Deceased did not have a spouse and was survived by seven siblings, and two children.

The concern in this case was that the Deceased did not leave anyone with legal authority or responsibility to arrange his funeral and dispose of his remains.

Two of the Deceased’s siblings, the Applicants, applied for a Certificate of Appointment of Estate Trustee Without a Will. The daughter of the Deceased, the Respondent, also applied for a Certificate of Appointment of Estate Trustee Without a Will.

 

In his decision, the Honourable Justice Stinson considered the legal interpretation of section 29 of the Estates Act, which reads as follows:

1)  Subject to subsection (3), where a person dies intestate … administration of the property of the deceased may be committed by the Superior Court of Justice to:

 

a)      the person to whom the deceased was married immediately before the death of the deceased or person with whom the deceased was living in a conjugal relationship outside marriage immediately before the death;

 

b)      the next of kin of the deceased;

As the Deceased did not have a spouse, the court considered the definition of “next of kin.” In the Black’s Law Dictionary, “next of kin” is defined as “the person’s nearest of kindred to the decedent, that is, those who are most nearly related by blood.

 

Applying these concepts, the court held that the Respondent daughter was related to the Deceased by blood in the first degree, whereas the Applicants siblings were related to the Deceased in the second degree. Accordingly, the Respondent daughter was appointed as the Estate Trustee During Litigation.

 

Thank you for reading, and have a great day.


Rick Bickhram – Click here for more information on Rick Bickhram.

23 Dec

You Can Run But You Can’t Hide

Hull & Hull LLP Estate & Trust, Litigation Tags: , , , , , 0 Comments

Testamentary instruments, that is.

A common burr among beneficiaries is that the estate trustee often resists disclosing the deceased’s Will or other testamentary instruments.  Without reviewing the entirety of the testamentary instruments, beneficiaries may never feel certain of the extent of their interest in an estate.  This strategy tends to add fuel to pre-existing distrust among the parties. 

Fortunately, there is a simple solution.  By section 9(1) of the Estates Act, any person may be forced to produce any testamentary instrument, and by section 9(2) any person with knowledge of a purported testamentary instrument can be forced to answer questions about the document:

9.  (1)  Whether a suit or other proceeding is or is not pending in the court with respect to a probate or administration, the Superior Court of Justice may, on motion or otherwise in a summary way, order any person to produce and bring before the registrar, or otherwise as the court may direct, any paper or writing being or purporting to be testamentary that is shown to be in the possession or under the control of such person.

(2)  If it is not shown that such paper or writing is in the possession or under the control of such person, but it appears that there are reasonable grounds for believing that he or she has knowledge of such paper or writing, the court may direct such person to attend for the purpose of being examined in open court or before the registrar or such person as the court may direct, or upon interrogatories respecting the same, and to produce and bring in such paper or writing, and such person is subject to the like process in case of default in not attending or in not answering questions or interrogatories or not bringing in such paper or writing, as the person would have been subject to if he or she had been a party to a suit in the court and had made such default, and the costs of such motion or other proceeding are in the discretion of the court.

With these provisions, motions are often not necessary.  A simple letter bringing the provision to the attention of the estate trustee along with a polite request to produce the document(s) is all that should be required.  By the same token, estate trustees (or anyone else with possession or knowledge of documents purporting to be testamentary) have no justification for secrecy.  Happily, this provision creates a powerful incentive for information-sharing, which is often a prerequisite to ending or preventing an estates dispute.

Have a great day,

Chris Graham

Christopher M.B. Graham – Click here for more information on Chris Graham.

 

 

03 Jun

Accounting Under the Powers of Attorney – Hull on Estates #113

Hull & Hull LLP Hull on Estates, Passing of Accounts, Podcasts, Power of Attorney Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 0 Comments

Listen to Accounting Under the Powers of Attorney

This week on Hull on Estates, Diane and Paul discuss accounting under the powers or attorney, the duty to account after the guarantor has passed away and the De Zorzi Estate v. Read case (2008, O.J. No. 944).

Comments? Send us an email at hull.lawyers@gmail.com, call us on the comment line at 206-350-6636, or leave us a comment on the Hull on Estates blog.

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19 Feb

Accounting Procedure Available Under the Substitute Decisions Act – Hull on Estates #98

Hull & Hull LLP Capacity, Hull on Estates, Litigation, Passing of Accounts, Podcasts Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 0 Comments

Listen to Accounting Procedure Available Under the Substitution Decisions Act.

This week on Hull on Estates, Rick and David discuss procedure under the Substitution Decisions Act and review executor and attorney obligations as well as specific procedures permitting someone to compel an accounting.

Comments? Send us an email at hull.lawyers@gmail.com, call us on the comment line at 206-350-6636, or leave us a comment on the Hull on Estates blog.

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15 Jan

Karkus v. Cotroneo 2007 – Hull on Estates #93

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Listen to Karkus v. Cotroneo 2007

This week on Hull on Estates, Paul Trudelle and Diane Vieira discuss the case of Karkus v. Cotroneo 2007. The case addresses many of the issues that estate lawyers face on a daily basis, such as: proving or disproving gifts, slander of title and the importance of corroborative evidence.

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