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Jewish Cemetery

Reburial in a Jewish Cemetery

As part of the Jewish High Holiday season, like many of my co-religionists I have gone through some introspection and wondered is there a case that defines me as a lawyer. Throughout my career I have had the opportunity to represent some very interesting clients and be involved is some very interesting cases. When I thought about it there were two very similar cases that came to mind.
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Estate Trustee Fees

When is a Trustee Disentitled to Compensation?

In the ordinary course both the Estate Trustee and the Attorney for Property are entitled to be compensated for their work. What happens if they don’t follow the common law or statutory obligations that oblige an Estate Trustee or an Attorney for Property to keep proper accounts? What happens if they wrongfully take money or breach other obligations on them? Do they still get compensated or do they just get less money? Have the courts provided a clear red line that disentitles a trustee from receiving compensation?
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Tax Planning And Estate Law

A tax trap in mediation – the foreign joint tenant

Mediation is mandatory in any Estate litigation commenced in the city of Toronto, Ottawa or in the county of Essex. Motivation to settle is often fueled by tax considerations. As part of the settlement does it make sense for it to be allocated to the spouse or the children of…

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Forced-sale

Can you compel an executor to sell?

A parent dies and the adult children become equal beneficiaries of the residue of the parent’s Estate.The Estate is primarily made up of income producing real estate holdings that remain profitable. Some of the siblings want to continue to operate the properties, while other siblings want the properties to be sold and converted to money to be distributed to the beneficiaries. Does a beneficiary have the right to force an executor to sell real property that forms part of the Estate?
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Promises After Death

Can Promises Be Enforceable After Death?

In Canadian law there is a legal doctrine called “proprietary estoppel”. This doctrine will arise where the owner of land, let’s call him Albert, leads another person, Barbara, to believe that they will enjoy a benefit over Albert’s property, and in reliance on that belief, Barbara acts to her detriment to the knowledge of Albert, and Albert takes advantage of Barbara by denying Barbara the benefit at stake. While the concept may appear confusing at first, the Ontario Superior Court provides a clear illustration of how the doctrine works in Love v. Schumacher.
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Frozen Asset

Estate Freeze Litigation Concerns

if you ask the typical accountant about an estate freeze, he or she will tell you that smart people who are in a growth business are well advised to consider an estate freeze in order to defer taxes. In an estate freeze, the owner of the business will take steps to freeze the value of that business today and ensure that the future growth (and any capital gains on it) passes on to the next generation. Arguably, if properly implemented, by taking these steps the present owner can maintain control of the business while deferring the capital gains tax which would otherwise be paid upon the death of the owner on the increase in value. That may be how tax planners see an estate freeze, but there is another side to this question.
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Extorsion By Executor Of Estate

The Extorting Executor

Is it normal for an executor to ask that a beneficiary sign a release and indemnity prior to paying out the inheritance? Executors can ask, but do beneficiaries have to sign?
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Estate Executor

Appointing an ETDL without a will challenge

Section 28 of the Estates Act provides the court with jurisdiction to appoint an ETDL in the context of a Will Challenge or removal of an executor. Arguably, based on the cases reviewed herein, for those matters outside the parameters of s. 28 of the Estates Act the Courts may rely on subrule 75.06 (3)(f). The tests for exercising that discretion are set out in in Kalman v. Pick and McColl v. McColl. When the conduct of the estate trustee is endangering the administration of the Estate the court will exercise its discretion to appoint an ETDL to ensure the transparent and orderly administration of the estate.
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