Estate Litigation

“We have had the reassurance of David’s defence...”

– J. and L. Toronto

Estate Litigation

Often in my practice clients will first approach me “after the horse has escaped the barn,” so to speak; in other words they will often first consult me after the damage has been done. For example, often I am consulted by people who believe that a sibling may have stolen from a parent, or otherwise acted improperly when using a Power of Attorney; sometimes these people consult me after the parent has died, or if still alive and but not able to care for him or herself and discover that the parent is being poorly cared for despite having enough money to live safely and comfortably. As well, often they suspected that something was wrong, but did not want to approach the sibling or seek legal help because of being afraid of causing a family rift, especially if that would bother the parent. In my experience problems like these are best addressed sooner rather than later, and all consultations are confidential. Sometimes if a client consults with me when he or she first realizes that there may be a problem, I can assist them in addressing their concerns without anyone knowing that a lawyer was involved, and at relatively minimal cost.

Estate Litigation involves issues surrounding the use and disposition of assets, whether real property, cash, stocks or other valuables, of “other people” and how that is to be done. People often think of the challenging of a will as Estate Litigation, and it is included among it (the “other person” is the testator, or the person who has died) but there are many other types of proceedings that can be said to be included. Matters such as Dependant’s Relief, proper use of Powers of Attorney and Guardianship, trusts, and Intestate Succession (where a person dies without a will) are also included in Estate Litigation, as are several other areas.

If you are in a situation where you believe that someone is acting improperly or negligently in dealing with an estate, a trust, or in managing the health or assets of someone else, you may have remedies to allow you to make a claim or to prevent damage in advance, or at least stop it. If you believe that you may have a claim as against an estate, whether because the will was written under wrongful influence or the deceased person was not of sound mind, or another reason (there are circumstances where the law will impose payment to certain persons by an estate, even if the deceased would not have wanted it) then you should consult an experienced lawyer to advise you and help determine if you have rights a legal solution to your issue is available.

David Brooker has had almost 20 years of experience in dealing with numerous types of estate litigation area issues; he has acted for estate trustees (executors), beneficiaries, attorneys, and others who find that they require advice, knowledge and guidance when dealing with often highly emotional and difficult disputes. If you believe you may have an estate litigation issue that requires David’s services, please email him here – the earlier you confront the issues the better the chance that they be able to resolved faster and at less cost.