The Wills Variation Under WESA permits close relations such as spouses and children to challenge, or ‘contest’, the fairness of a will. For example, if it appears that one of the children has been treated more favourably than the others; or if a common law spouse is receiving unfair treatment.
Contesting a Will
A wills variation action is one of the most common types of estate litigation in Vancouver and throughout BC. In fact, we are the only province in Canada with this unique legislation as other provinces have dependents relief legislation.
According to the Wills Variation provision of WESA, the will maker (or ‘testator’) has obligations to make adequate, just and equitable provision for the spouse and children under his or her will. If he or she has failed to do this, the courts may step in and vary the will. Whether and to what extent the court will vary a will depends on the circumstances. While prior cases provide some guidance, each claim is decided on its own facts and merit.
Estate Litigation Lawyers
If you are contesting a will, Hobbs Giroday’s Vancouver estate litigation lawyers have the in-depth knowledge of the issues surrounding this area of law. With a wealth of estate litigation experience behind us, we can readily advise you on your Wills Variation claim and any related estate litigation issues such as probate, power of attorney and trust litigation.
We also understand the value of controlling the outcome, and can act as skilled negotiators on your behalf in informal or mediation-based settlement discussions. If these negotiations do not meet your desired outcome, we will actively pursue your interests in court.
There is a small window of time to bring a wills variation action, so it is vital to commence legal action as quickly as possible. If you are unhappy with what you have received under your parent or spouse’s will, contact us for a free consultation about your rights today.