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Are Adult Children Legally Entitled To Inheritance?

In British Columbia disinherited adult children have a strong claim against a parent's estate based on their moral entitlement to an inheritance. Tataryn was the seminal case in British Columbia which was ultimately decided by the Supreme Court of Canada. The importance of adult children dependent's moral claim in Tataryn was adopted by the Ontario Court of Appeal. But there is no clear court decision in Ontario suggesting that the moral claims of non dependent children are legally enforcable in Ontario.
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Who Gets The Engagement Ring?

After Marsha agreed to marry him, Marc gave her a $20,000.00 diamond engagement ring. Soon after Marc caught Marsha on a date with another man. He demanded that she give back the engagement ring. She refused. In her mind the engagement ring was a gift. Marc sued. Who do you think should get the ring? Let’s see what the courts say.
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Second Marriages and Risks to the Estate

The author reviews Ontario’s laws of inheritance in the context of second marriages. He addresses the risk to implementing a person's testamentary intentions. For example, in Ontario, under certain circumstances a new marriage revokes previous wills, the failure to provide full and frank disclosure may invalidate a domestic contract and a court may still order a deceased’s estate to pay support to a dependant regardless of any agreement made to the contrary.
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Do Mistresses Have a Right to Inheritance?

Can you imagine burying a spouse and then being sued for support by his mistress? For those who believe in primacy on marriage and that marriage obligates its partners to fidelity, the idea of rewarding a mistress to a portion of the family’s an inheritance is unjust. Others argue that financial obligations should flow from the intensity and duration of life partner relationships regardless of the partners' marital status. What do the courts think?
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DISINHERITING CHILDREN WHO MARRY OUTSIDE THE FAITH

The Illinois Supreme Court held that the testamentary clause disinherting a potential beneficiary for marrying outside the faith was valid. The test was whether the provision was capable of producing harm that its enforcement would be contrary to the public interest. The Illinois Supreme Court upheld the Will because they placed a premium on the right of individuals to decide what happens to their assets after they die. They disagreed with the lower courts who suggested that the clause in question was a restraint of marriage
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Money Missing? Powers of Attorney, Executors and Adverse Inference

Very often a parent appoints the favourite child to manage the parent’s property (“power of attorney”) or be the executor under the parent’s will. Perhaps the child is honest but has no idea what obligations are involved with being an attorney for property or as an executor and fails to keep proper records. Perhaps that child is very dishonest and the lack of records is simply his way to hide the improper use of his parent’s money. So what typically happens?
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Objections to Accounts

So if you suspect that the power of attorney has done something wrong what are some of the things you should look for? The first thing you should know is that a power of attorney has both a common law and statutory duty to keep proper records of all transactions involving the property.
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Death Can Cheat a Creditor

A creditor may enforce a judgment for the payment or recovery of money by garnishment. Garnishment is a procedure whereby moneys owing to the debtor (garnishee) by a third person attach directly to the creditor (garnishor). Garnishment attaches to moneys held in a RRSP. In life, there is little question that RRSP’s vest in the owner of the RRSP. At death, section 2(1) of the Estates Administration Act states that any real and personal property of a person that vests in that person during life, is transferred to the personal representative of that person at death, regardless of whether the property is disposed of by will or any other testamentary disposition.
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May An Executor Buy Estate Assets?

Executors often want to buy assets belonging to an estate. Beneficiaries often suspect the executors of wrong doing. So I often am asked whether it’s legal for an executor to buy an asset from the estate. The short answer is maybe, possibly, but not usually. it would be prudent to for all the beneficiaries to obtain independent legal advice. Furthermore, the purchase price should be somewhat more then fair market value. With all these arrows in his/her quiver the trustee might be well advised to seek preapproval of the sale from the court by bringing an application for the opinion, advice and direction of the court under Rule 14.05(3)(d), and under section 60 of the Trustee Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. T.23.
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