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occupation rent

Occupation rent and estate litigation

In estate litigation this scenario comes up quite often.  One family member stays in mom and dad’s house after their death and appears to be freeloading at the expense of the others. This can happen in estate litigation when a deceased person fails to adequately document their intentions with respect to the ongoing occupation of their home after their passing.
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discrimination in inheritance law

Disinheritance because of sexual orientation

In Ontario, the current state of the law is such that a testator is free to exclude an adult, independent child from their will on the basis of their sexual orientation. The discriminatory intent may even be written into the will. For example, the following provision “I am excluding my only son from my will because he is homosexual” is, according to the principles set out by the Court of Appeal for Ontario in the 2016 Spence v. BMO Trust Company decision, presently considered to be an acceptable exercise of a testator’s testamentary autonomy.
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where in world

Where in the world should I prepare my powers of attorney?

While initiatives by lawmakers are being pursued to harmonize laws addressing the enforceability of capacity-related documents worldwide, this has not yet been finalized.  Therefore, when issues regarding the enforceability of POAs arise, consultation with a litigation lawyer about what your options might be – potentially in coordination with a litigation lawyer in another jurisdiction – is recommended.
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order of estate distribution

Does an estate have to pay a creditor or a dependant first?

How do dependants rank in terms of priority over others with a claim or interest in an estate’s assets? Let’s get a running start with a quick review of the law. During their lifetime people often borrow money. Sometimes the loan is to buy a house or car, or even to invest in a business. When a person dies, one of the jobs of the executor is to pay off all the debts before dividing the estate amongst the beneficiaries. But, what about those people who relied on the deceased for support? Who gets paid first - the creditors or the dependants?
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younger wife

Seduction, Marriage and Elder Abuse

In this case, the children were fortunate that the judge found that the father’s residence was really held in trust for the children so it did not form part of the estate. Muna did not get much money. This time the children were lucky. Unfortunately, that is not always the case.
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second- marriage contract

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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family law

Review of Family Law TV Series E05 “Until Death Do Us Part”

The fifth episode of the new Global TV series “Family Law” deals with family members who go to court to fight about who should be the attorney for personal care of Helen, the family matriarch. Helen suffers from Alzherimers. She resides in an assisted living facility and has struck up a sexual relationship with another resident. Helen’s husband, Ira, is fighting to stop the romantic relationship, for obvious reasons. Helen’s daughter wants her mother to be happy and therefore thinks she should be entitled to continue with her affair.
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Scholastic’s Succession Plot Twist

When Scholastic’s CEO Richardson Robinson Jr. died in June, he apparently shocked his family by giving control of the $1.2 billion company and his personal possessions to Scholastic’s Chief Strategy Officer, with whom he’d had a long-term relationship, rather than to his siblings, children, or ex-wife.
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record keeping trustee

Can a Trustee be Disentitled From Receiving Compensation?

Individuals who act as a trustee or an attorney for property are statutorily entitled to compensation for the time and effort they have expended in their respective roles. Notwithstanding the entitlement to compensation, courts will not reward individuals who fall below their common law or statutory obligations. The question then, is what actions or omissions must an individual do in order to disentitle themselves from their statutory entitlements to compensation.
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estate law remarriages

Religious Marriages status in Ontario Law

Harry, 85, wants to marry 75-year-old Esther, but he does not want to lose his widower's pension. They agree not to obtain a marriage license or register the marriage, but instead to have only a ritual ceremony in a rabbi's office. Harry dies and his will leaves his assets to his children. Does only a religious marriage ceremony give Esther any rights to Harry's estate?
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