Weilers LLP

Towards Efficient Justice in Estate Disputes?

September 1, 2023 By Jonathon Clark Estate disputes triggered by sibling rivalry continue to clog up Ontario courts. THE CASE So much so that the Ontario Court of Appeal upheld a Superior Court decision where the judge departed from normal requirements that the outcome of a hearing has to be something the parties anticipated or […]

What Happens to Your Pets When You Die?

August 28, 2023 By Mark Mikulasik Many of us consider our pets to be part of the family. Ontario law considers them to be property. British Columbia is leading the way with proposed legislation that would treat pets more like family members in the event of a custody dispute. However, this does not appear to […]

Estate Trustees and the Explosion of Litigation

July 4, 2023 By Jonathon Clark In a recent article, we focused on how terminology can confuse even sophisticated people as to the difference between various sorts of trustees. That article emphasized the importance of understanding your role. THE ISSUE But should you agree to act? THE CASE If you are named as an estate […]

Removal of Trustees

June 20, 2023 By Mark Mikulasik What happens when a trustee must be removed, whether due to ill health, misconduct, or other good reason? And who determines what is a good reason? We touched on this topic before in an article on selection of trustees, but thought it deserves more attention. The law in Ontario […]

What is the Duty of Even-handedness?

June 13, 2023 By Brian Babcock If you are a trustee, such as an estate trustee, you have a wide variety of duties that you owe to the estate and the beneficiaries. One of these is the duty of even-handedness, sometimes no one has the duty of impartiality. The will or other document setting up […]

Are you now or have you ever been…

January 13, 2023 By Fhara Pottinger …an estate trustee, an executor, an executrix, or a plain old trustee? THE ISSUE The modernization of legal terms to keep pace with the modernization of the English language is a good thing, but you need to be wary of unintended consequences. Some of the changes, while effective for […]

Sibling Rivalry in Estate Planning

December 11, 2022 By Fhara Pottinger This article is not about a specific case. Rather, it is about a disturbing trend in estate disputes and estate litigation that has been observed not only by our law firm, but by many law firms dealing in the field. THE ISSUE What we are seeing is a distressing […]

“To Be or Not Be” – A Trustee That Is

October 28, 2022 By Fhara Pottinger “To be or not be” – a trustee that is – that is the question. Apologies to the Bard, but the reason for the borrowing will soon be apparent. THE ISSUE Does an estate trustee need to have expertise in the subject matter of an estate’s single most valuable […]

Is that a life interest or a license to occupy?

August 12, 2022 By Brian Babcock Another reason to be careful about the drafting of your will. THE ISSUE Sometimes people making a will (a “testator”) want to make sure that a friend or family member has a place to live following the death triggering the provisions of the will. It is also not uncommon […]

Family Cottage Succession: A Dream or A Nightmare Take Two

August 5, 2022 By Brian Babcock About a year ago, we posted an article entitled Family Cottage Succession: A Dream or A Nightmare?. That article dealt with the issues that could arise from a simple brother-sister dispute when two buildings were constructed on one lot. We concluded the article with the tagline “don’t let your […]