VANCOUVER, BC—(Marketwired – March 30, 2018) – As a team of Vancouver lawyers, the professionals at Kushner Law have recently published a blog explaining how the new Wills, Estates and Succession Act (“WESA”) provides the tools to rectify a number of common errors in wills. For more, go to: http://kushnerlaw.ca/will–variation–bc–law–beneficiary–witness–valid/
Lawyers are often hired to fix avoidable errors and the practice of wills variation and estate litigation is no different. As part one of a two–part blog series, the lawyers at Kushner delve into the statutory tools provided by WESA and their applicability to real–world wills problems.
It is important to note that WESA is still relatively new legislation, and many of its sections have not received much consideration by the Courts. However, consider a scenario where an individual is witness to a will that stipulates that either they or their spouse will receive gifts.
This is a problem. Asking someone close to witness a will seems natural. Yet, under the law, when someone is a witness to a will (meaning they sign the document after witnessing the testator's signature), they are normally not allowed to receive a gift in the will.
The gift would be void. And this same rule applies to the witness's spouse as well. The purpose is to ensure no undue influence was exerted on the will–maker. Of course, it can be a problem for a testator in a rush to find two non–beneficiary witnesses.
As a solution, S. 43(4) of WESA now enables a witness–beneficiary to apply to the Court to declare that the gift is valid. The applicant must demonstrate the will–maker intended to make the gift and there was no pressure or undue influence.
Consulting with an Estate Litigation Lawyer is highly recommended when it comes to amending or correcting a will. As sensitive and technical documents, minor errors can lead to challenges or even render a document void.
To speak to a Vancouver lawyer who specializes in litigation, contact the Kushner Law Group today at 604–629–0432 to schedule a consultation.
About the Company
The Kushner Law Group was founded on the principle that a small law firm should be able to offer the same level of legal advice as a big firm at an affordable cost. A unique combination of legal experience and creativity allows the professionals at Kushner to come up with creative and practical solutions for a variety of legal problems.
For additional information, please visit http://kushnerlaw.ca/ or call 604–629–0432.