Estate Litigation: Understanding Intestate Succession Part II

Lawyers who practice Estate Litigation always emphasize the importance of estate planning to ensure that people understand the importance of having a valid will. However, as we discussed in part 1 of this blog series, there is still a huge number of people who die without a valid will. When someone dies without a will they are considered to have died intestate and the distribution of their assets is governed by the Wills Estates and Succession Act (“WESA”)

21(2) of WESA provides that if someone dies intestate with a surviving spouse and descendant, then the spouse is entitled to the household furnishings and preferential share in the estate as follows:

(2) If a person dies without a will leaving a spouse and surviving descendants, the following must be distributed from the intestate estate to the spouse:

(a) the household furnishings;

(b) a preferential share of the intestate estate in accordance with subsection (3) or (4).

(3) If all descendants referred to in subsection (2) are descendants of both the intestate and the spouse, the preferential share of the spouse is $300 000, or a greater amount if prescribed.

(4) If all descendants referred to in subsection (2) are not common to the intestate and the spouse, the preferential share of the spouse is $150 000, or a greater amount if prescribed.

(5) If the net value of an intestate estate is less than the spouse’s preferential share under subsection (3) or (4), the intestate estate must be distributed to the spouse.

(6) If the net value of an intestate estate is the same as or greater than the spouse’s preferential share under subsection (3) or (4),

(a) the spouse has a charge on the intestate estate for the amount of the spouse’s preferential share under subsection (3) or (4), and

(b) the residue of the intestate estate, after satisfaction of the spouse’s preferential share, must be distributed as follows:

(i) one half to the spouse;

(ii) one half to the intestate’s descendants.

If you are involved in Estate litigation in Vancouver, it is important that you meet with a lawyer to understand your rights. Contact the Kushner Law Group today to schedule a consultationPage Not Found

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