Kelly Santini’s J.P. Zubec and Henry Bertoia achieved a successful result in a motion brought within a complicated estate dispute between step-siblings. …
When a dispute arises between family members and estate beneficiary, our dispute resolution team can help clients reach a fair and cost effective resolution to the conflict.
Our estate litigation team has experience advising on:
- Will and trust disputes
- Mental incapacity matters
- Guardianship applications
- Dependant’s relief claims
- Court applications to determine questions relating to the interpretation of wills or trusts
- Removing or replacing trustees, executors and Power of Attorney
Capacity Challenge Successfully Opposed
In a proceeding before the Superior Court of Justice, JP Zubec acted for an attorney for property of the grantor, who was approximately 90 years-old and incapacitated. The applicant in the proceeding, who was an estranged member of the grantor’s family, sought an order that invalidated the Power of Attorney document that appointed the client, arguing that the grantor lacked the capacity to execute the document. JP successfully convinced the Court to dismiss the proceeding with costs to his client after a full hearing, which included evidence about the grantor’s health around the time he signed the Power of Attorney.
Action Brought Against Sister for Misuse of Mother’s Trust Fund
JP Zubec represented a brother and sister when their sibling breached a trust agreement by borrowing against a $1M condominium that was placed in her trust by the mother. JP brought a successful application to the Superior Court of Justice for a declaration that that condominium was being held in trust and for an order requiring the sister to repay the amounts mortgaged against the condominium. In that same proceeding, the sister brought a counter-application to have one of JP’s clients removed as their mother’s attorney for property and for an order requiring that client to account for his management of the mother’s property. That counter-application was eventually withdrawn by the sister.
$600,000 Misappropriated Funds Repaid
JP Zubec was retained by his client, when his sister attempted to have him removed as a co-estate trustee of their mother’s estate immediately after their mother died and while our client was out of Canada. JP successfully defeated the application and successfully brought a cross-application to have the sister removed as an estate trustee for an order requiring the sister to account for her dealings with the mother’s property while the mother was alive and the sister was the mother’s attorney for property. As a result of the accounting that was ordered, it was discovered that the sister had misappropriated approximately $600,000 from her mother while purporting to serve her mother as her mother’s attorney for property. The proceeding settled before a trial with the sister assigning her interest in the estate to our client in order to settle the debt that she owed.
Unwanted Occupant of Estate Family Home Removed
Blake Bochinski was successful in obtaining a Writ of Possession for his Estate Trustee client to have the sheriff forcibly remove the Respondent occupant who was living rent free in his mother’s property for 52 years. He was under no disability that would prevent him from working and obtaining his own residence. The occupant refused to vacate the property and he refused to allow contractors to attend the property to do repairs. The house was falling into disrepair. The court ruled that the Estate was entitled to immediate vacant possession. The court agreed that the Respondent was liable for the costs of pest control services because of the property being left in horrendous conditions. Blake also helped the Estate by obtaining an Order for 16 months of occupation rent, the period in which the Respondent was unlawfully occupying the property.
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