by Dylan Segal
So you’ve just received an unusual letter, likely from a lawyer’s office, with a form titled Notice of Proposed Application in Relation to Estate. You may be asking yourself; what does this mean and, do I need a lawyer? The answer to the latter question, as is often the case, is maybe.
A deceased person will pass away in British Columbia either with a valid will or without a will, which is called dying ‘intestate’.
If there is a will or some testamentary document naming an executor, usually this named person will then hire a lawyer and apply to administer the estate. As part of this process certain people are entitled to notice of this intention to apply.
In the alternative situation, where a person dies without a will or testamentary document, then still someone has to administer the estate. Quite often this person will be a spouse, child, parent or other family member of the deceased.
For many people, receiving the ‘Notice of Proposed Application in Relation to Estate’ document package, or ‘P1 Notice’ (as commonly referred to) is the first time a person learns whether a deceased person had a will, what the will says, who is applying to administer the estate, and what gift (if any) the recipient has under the will or through an intestate distribution.
This information can be alarming. You may be shocked to learn that mom or dad made a new will that you were not aware of, and now you’re being left nothing from the estate or receiving far less than what you were expected. You may believe such a new will to be invalid. You may also question the motives or intentions of the person applying to administer an estate. For example, someone you have not met purporting to be the deceased’s ‘spouse’.
If you’re receiving the Notice of Proposed Application in Relation to Estate, then, as the form says, this means you have legal rights in and against the deceased’s estate. There are also legislative timelines to exercise these rights so you should act quickly.
What you can and should do will depend on what your issues are. Call us now to discuss your matter.