Wills & Estates Blog


Document gifts to kids or risk estate litigation

It’s sometimes hard to tell who is happier when generous parents present a large gift to their grateful child.   But the mutual joy could be short lived if the transaction is not documented, as one B.C. family found out when tension over a $170,000 payment descended into messy litigation.   The

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Who is a spouse? Not always who you might think

Determining who is a testator’s spouse is not as straightforward as it might seem at first glance.  In a recent B.C. case, a Chinese woman failed in an attempt to convince a judge that she was the spouse of a murdered man who died with no will, no wife, and

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Henson Trusts for parents of children on the autism spectrum

A Henson Trust could help the parents of autistic children to continue supporting their loved ones after they’re gone.  I recently had the privilege of speaking at an event put on by Autism Speaks Canada, which focussed on financial success with an autism diagnosis.  The charity says that lack of

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Unwitnessed will validated by Court of Appeal

Can I get a witness?  A recent Alberta decision shows you might not always need one for your will to be valid, but that doesn’t mean you should forget about finding suitable people to witness yours.  The woman at the heart of the case died suddenly in September 2019, just

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Where to store your will

Once you’ve taken the trouble of drafting a will, make sure you keep it safe.  In my opinion, the best place for the original copy is with your lawyer, and my practice is generally to store wills for my clients.   However, CTV News recently reported that fewer legal professionals than ever

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Generational clash looming over Boomer-Millennial inheritances

Clashing expectations are setting the stage for a cross-generational war over inheritances between Baby Boomer parents and their Millennial children.  A survey by investment bank Natixis recently found that 68 per cent are anticipating a financial windfall whenever their parents pass on. However, many of them could be in for

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