Tag Archives: trusts and estates

ILN Today Post

Delaware’s 2018 Trust Act Allows Trustees to Better Respond to Beneficiaries’ Investment Values

When investing trust funds, trustees of a Delaware trust must abide by a statutory “prudent person” standard (unless expressly released from doing so in the trust instrument) that requires the trustee to act with “the care, skill, prudence and diligence under the circumstances then prevailing that a prudent person acting in a like capacity and familiar with such matters would use to attain the purpose of the account.”  When investing as a prudent person, a trustee may take into account certain circumstances, including the tax consequences of a transaction, the overall health of the economy, and the investment horizon of the beneficiaries of the trust.  The 2018 Trust Act added to the list of circumstances a trustee may consider “the beneficiaries’ personal values, including the beneficiaries’ desire to engage in sustainable investing strategies that align with the beneficiaries’ social, environmental, governance or other values or beliefs of the beneficiaries.”

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ILN Today Post

Triggers to update your will: family changes

This is Part 2 of a three-part series where Toronto wills and estates lawyer Mary Wahbi talks about the life events that should trigger a review of your will. In this instalment, she explores changes in family life situations that should spur you to update your will.

One of the most important times to update estate planning is when there has been a change in family life or relationships, says Toronto estates lawyer Mary Wahbi.

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ILN Today Post

Out of time Inheritance Act claims: lessons from the Sargeant case

Mrs Mary Sargeant’s case is a classic example of why advisers of bereaved widow(er)s are ideally placed to help their clients consider whether sufficient provision has been made for them under their deceased spouse’s Will.  The problem, as Mrs Sargeant found out, is that this is sometimes not obvious even a number of months after their spouse’s death.  However, the law places restrictions on how long bereaved spouses can take to try to improve their financial lot if insufficient provision has been made for them.

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ILN Today Post

How to help your non-dom clients with IHT

They say change brings opportunity, so the optimists among you can rejoice (maybe) because, thanks to the present government, a whole new range of clients need your advice (perhaps).

Why the equivocation? Well, until recently, it seemed certain that changes affecting the taxation of non-UK domiciliaries (non-doms), which were included in the March 2017 version of the Finance Bill 2017, would come into effect on 6 April 2017, as planned.

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IRS Releases 2015 Income and Transfer Tax Adjustments

INFLATION-ADJUSTED THRESHOLD AND CEILING INCREASES

The Social Security Administration and the IRS have released their 2015 list of CPI-adjusted items that will affect individual income, payroll and transfer tax calculations for 2015. We have provided you with some of the key provisions in the following grids.

INCOME TAXS

Threshold amounts above which the top regular and alternative minimum tax (AMT) rates apply.

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Probate Rules Updated

The Wills, Estates and Succession Act (“WESA”) comes into force on March 31, 2014. At the same time, the Supreme Court Civil Rules (the “Rules”) related to probate and estate administration are being amended to “reflect the changes brought about by the enactment of the Wills, Estates and Succession Act and to generally modernize the application process”. The BC government recently released a document that summarizes and explains the amendments to the Rules (http://www.ag.gov.bc.ca/legislation/wills-estates-succession-act/pdf/SC_ProbateRules_Part25.pdf). Here are some of the highlights:

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ILN Today Post

Law Firm To Host Free Forum On Wills And Trusts

On April 20, the law firm Halsbury Chambers will host a free legal forum at the British Colonial Hilton titled “Wills, Living Wills and Trusts”.

The first in a new series and sister to the annual free legal clinic, “Information You Need for the Life You Want”, the mini-forum will be limited to the first 50 persons to pre-register and will be held from 11am to 1pm.

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Fiscal Cliff Averted: A Breakdown of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012

On January 2, 2013, President Obama signed into law the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012. The new law is a partial resolution to avert the looming fiscal cliff, and it addresses many tax provisions that were set to expire at the end of 2012. The following is a summary of some of the major provisions included in the Act as they pertain to:

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Leaving Your Estate to a Pet – Is It Possible in Canada?

Animals have been prominent in newspaper headlines over the past week. A cute monkey in a coat wandered freely in a Toronto-area Ikea. In New Zealand, driving dogs passed a doggie driving test, navigating a modified car around a race track live on television. It turns out that animals are not all that different than people.

Pet owners shower their pets with love and affection. It is not surprising that, in the event that they pass away before their pet, these owners want to ensure that the pet is taken care of. As wills and estates lawyers, it our job to make sure the owner is able to do that, but how? Although there is legislation in the USA that expressly permits trusts for pets, there is no such legislation in Canada. That does not mean it cannot be done.

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Settlement of Wills Variation Claims Involving Minors

Under the Wills Variation Act of BC, a spouse or child of a deceased may apply to the Court to vary the deceased’s Will if the Will does not make adequate provision for the proper maintenance and support of the spouse or child.

In some cases, adult beneficiaries and adult challenger(s) of the Will may agree amongst themselves to distribute an estate in a way that is different than that the deceased has directed in the Will without the necessity of a court application. But what if a minor is a named beneficiary in the Will? Can the challenger(s) of the Will reach an agreement with all the beneficiaries, including the minor, to distribute the estate differently than the terms of the Will direct?

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