Estate Litigation

Estate Litigation,  Langley and Surrey

At Magnus Law, our clients include: individuals, families, charities and trusts. In addition to representing clients through the court process and mediation, we help clients understand their situation by explaining both the likely outcome and the risks associated with the various options available to them and the costs associated with the various options available.

Our estate litigation practice helps clients with all types of Estate and Probate problems/issues.  We help disinherited children and spouses ensure that they receive their fair share of an estate. Often this can be done by varying the will where the testator has not made adequate provision for his or her children and/or spouse.

We are skilled in resolving disputes about the validity of wills. Wills must be properly executed and the testator had the proper capacity to sign a will. If the will was not properly signed, there was undue influence or the testator did not have capacity the Will can be set aside.

At common-law, there are certain relationships which result in a presumption of undue influence such as caretakers. Section 52 of the Wills and Succession Act provides there is a presumption that there was undue influence over the person making a will or gift where the recipient of the gift was in a position of potential for dependence or domination. Unless that presumption is rebutted, the gift will be aside that a will or a provision thereof can be set

In determining whether a person had capacity there are four questions to be answered:1) Did the person understand the nature and effect of what he or she was signing? 2) Did the person know the nature and composition of their estate? 3) Did the will maker know his or her legal obligation his or her legal and moral obligations to family members? 4) Was the will maker free from delusion regarding making the will?

In representing executors, we ensure that you have the proper advice to ensure that you have a full understanding of your rights and responsibilities and to ensure that you and the estate are properly protected. During the course of Probate, applications to Court can be necessary for directions or to pass accounts –we can help.

Examples of some of the areas we assist with include:

  • Wills Variation Act Claims
    • Assisting disinherited children and spouses.
    • Defending an estate from Wills Variation claims
  • Testamentary Capacity
  • Undue Influence
  • Unjust enrichment claims
  • Challenging Wills & Trusts
  • Rectifying Wills and Trusts
  • Representing Charities
  • Representing Executors
  • Passing of Executor Accounts
  • Compelling executors and personal representatives to pass accounts
  • Applications for directions
  • Survivorship and presumption of death applications

 

For sample published cases please click here.