Areas of Practice

BC Estate Litigation

  • Capacity
  • Fiduciary Duty Claims
  • Validity of Wills
  • Wills Variation

When a death occurs, dealing with the resulting estate may lead to conflict. During already difficult times, Owen Bird’s estate litigation lawyers are available to help resolve estate disputes.

Estate disputes are not uncommon. They often concern capacity to make a will or other estate plan. Sometimes they arise even when careful and seemingly fair and reasonable estate plans are left behind; and also in the absence of any estate plans. They occur when unfair advantage may have been taken. With the massive transfer of wealth taking place between generations, estate disputes are increasing, as is the need for skillful and experienced counsel to assist in resolving such disputes.

We assist clients with all aspects of estate disputes. We represent clients applying to vary wills or defending against such claims. We act for clients as to whether the deceased left behind an unmarried spouse entitled to share in the estate. We are retained to resolve issues concerning the validity, construction and administration of wills and other estate planning tools, including trusts. We advise concerning powers of attorney and the extent of an attorney’s power to act on behalf of his or her principal. We act for beneficiaries, executors and trustees concerning breach of fiduciary duty claims, and disputes about administration of estates and trusts. We assist with claims relating to the gifting or transferring of financial resources and property, including into joint ownership, prior to death.

Our experienced estate litigation lawyers are well-qualified to advance or defend our clients’ interests in the courtroom. They have acted on leading and novel cases which have developed estate litigation jurisprudence in British Columbia. Emotions often run high in estate litigation, and there may be sensitive privacy issues as well. Our estate litigation lawyers also resolve estate disputes outside the courtroom, through negotiation, mediation and arbitration.