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Tag: Succession Law Reform Act

What Happens if You Die Without a Will in Ontario?

Confirmation of Registration Report They say nothing is certain in life but death and taxes. We pay taxes on a daily basis but often try to avoid the thought of death at all costs. Unfortunately, the cost to your loved ones if you do not plan for your estate in the event of your death can be abundant; and it […]

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ESTATES & INTESTACY: Spousal statutory rights when there is no Will

Continuing the discussion of the effects of a Family Law election on various aspects of estate administration; its effect on intestacy is now reviewed.Effect on IntestacyIn an intestacy (where a spouse dies without a will), either partial or total, the election in favour of an equalization claim (FLA, subsection 6(9)) will result in the surviving spouse’s forfeiture of his or her entitlement under Part II of the Succession Law Reform Act (“SLRA”). In a partial intestacy, even when the will states that the benefits under the will are to be in addition to the surviving spouse’s equalization claim, that statement would not prevent the latter’s forfeiture of entitlement under Part II of the SLRA for the other part of the estate that is under intestacy.In intestacy, the SLRA has no control over a surviving spouse’s entitlement to property situated outside Ontario. Succession to immovable property as dictated by conflict of laws rules is under the law of the situs (position or site).  So, unless the laws of the jurisdiction in which immovable property is situate require that Ontario law be applied (i.e. the SLRA), the surviving spouse who elects in favour of an equalization claim can get the assets located outside Ontario. This is a glaringly unfair, and probably an unintended result, caused because the Net Family Property (“NFP”) of the deceased spouse is calculated on the basis of his or her worldwide assets.

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ESTATES & NFP: How your estate will be impacted by your spouse’s statutory rights

The Impact of the Family Law Act on Estate Administration The administration of estates became very complicated with the enactment of Ontario’s Family Law Act (“FLA”) in 1986. Before that, the lawyer was to advise an estate trustee that the only statutory claim to interfere with the testate or intestate distribution of the deceased’s assets was one brought by a “dependant” under Part V of the Succession Law Reform Act (SLRA), on the grounds that the deceased had not made “adequate provision” for the claimant (usually a dependant). With the FLA in operation, the estate trustee is now also to be prepared for a potential property claim by a surviving married spouse.Net Family Property (NFP)A solid grasp of the rules in Part I of the FLA is essential to understand the nature of the surviving spouse’s claim and how it affects the estate trustee’s responsibilities and authority. “Net Family Property” (“NFP”) is the key concept underlying those rules, which is defined in subsection 4(1) of the FLA. In a nutshell, the NFP of a spouse is intended to be a measure of his or her increase in net worth during the

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ESTATE LITIGATION: Overturning the last Will & Testament of a deceased!

When someone seeks to overturn the last will and testament of a deceased, the proceeding is known as a challenge to a will. Generally, the validity of a will is challenged for the following reasons:The testator (the person who’s will it is) lacked the required testamentary capacity;There is lack of approval or knowledge of the contents of the will;

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WILLS & ESTATES: What Every Person Should Know!

The difference faced by a person selling life insurance and someone intending to make a will is similar to a great extent. The former has to tell the client to visualize a situation when he/she is not alive, not quite a great opening line. The latter similarly is not expected to think of impending death, at least not in the immediate future. However, the probability of death is always there; quite a number of people die at a

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