Family, Estates & Trusts 


Category: Trusts

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Trustee Act BC

You’ve likely heard of someone “acting as a trustee.” You may have been asked to act as trustee for a friend or loved one. You may be considering creating a trust and thinking about who to appoint as trustee to manage your property. Or you may be the beneficiary of a trust and unsure of […]

How to Sever a Joint Tenancy With Right of Survivorship

In the intricate landscape of property ownership, the concept of joint tenancy often emerges as a favored strategy, particularly among aging individuals seeking to transfer their assets to their adult children. While this approach can provide much-needed financial management assistance and the allure of survivorship rights, it also introduces a labyrinth of legal intricacies. The […]
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Benefits of Estate Planning

Estate planning is not just for the very wealthy. It is important and beneficial for everyone.  You may be wondering, why is estate planning important, regardless of financial status? Because it provides a variety of benefits for you and your loved ones and protects the assets you accumulate in your lifetime. A good estate plan […]

Can A Right of Survivorship Bank Account Be Challenged?

The right of survivorship in a joint bank account is a crucial aspect of estate planning for many individuals. It allows for the automatic transfer of ownership of the account balance to the surviving account holder upon the death of the other. The question of whether this right can be challenged arises in certain circumstances, […]

Everything You Should Know About Alter Ego Trusts

When you think about estate planning, your will likely comes to mind. You may also think about powers of attorney and other types of incapacity planning. What about trusts? Alter ego and joint partner trusts are powerful estate planning tools, but they tend to be not well understood. Trusts offer significant benefits, including the potential […]

Dividing an Estate: Gift During Lifetime of Parent to Adult Child

  When dividing an estate in BC, it is essential to determine what property of the will-maker forms part of the estate. If a will-maker made a valid gift of property during his or her lifetime, that property does not fall into the estate and the terms of the will do not apply to it. […]
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Vancouver Estate Litigation: Did Mother Intend to Give House to Son?

As I have recently discussed, gratuitous inter vivos transfers made without consideration frequently give rise to Vancouver estate litigation. As people age they often transfer property gratuitously to their adult children, and then hold it with them in joint tenancy. If, after the parent dies, it is unclear whether the parent intended to gift the […]

Breach of Fiduciary Duty Under Power of Attorney

A “power of attorney” is a legal document signed by the donor that appoints an agent (the “attorney”) and gives that agent the authority to carry out certain tasks for the donor. As a fiduciary, an attorney acting under a power of attorney is obliged to act only for the benefit of the donor and […]
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Financial Nondisclosure the “Cancer” of BC Estate Litigation

In Haley (Re), 2017 BCSC 2057, nondisclosure of financial information and assets surrounding the passing of accounts was described as the cancer of BC estate litigation. Failure on the part of the administrator, executrix, or trustee to disclose and consult with beneficiaries in a timely manner results in the failure to pass accounts as […]

Resulting Trusts: Tax Filings as Evidence of Transferor’s Intent

A “resulting trust” arises when title to property is in one party’s name, but that party, because he or she is a fiduciary or gave no value for the property, is under an obligation to return it to the original title owner. There is a presumption of resulting trust where property is acquired with one […]
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