WESA and Jurisdictional Challenges – Part 2
In the first part of this Blog, we discussed the decision of Mr. Justice Cole in Cresswell v. Cresswell Estate, 2017 BCSC 178 where the Court was faced with an application by the Defedants in this matter for an Order that the Supreme Court of British Columbia did not have the jurisdiction to hear the matter or in the alternative that the matter should be heard in Alberta. Mr. Justice Cole in citing the decision of Blazek v. Blazek, 2009 BCSC 1693 determined that the Court had the jurisdiction to hear the matter.
However, in considering the alternative application, that the matter be transferred to Alberta and that the Supreme Court of British Columbia decline to exercise territorial competence in this proceeding, Mr. Justice Cole determined that Alberta was the more appropriate forum as the Deceased “did not have any real and substantial connections to British Columbia.” Mr. Justice Cole was asked to consider the Court Jurisdiction and Proceedings Transfer Act and made the following comments:
 Section 11(1) states: 11 (1) After considering the interests of the parties to a proceeding and the ends of justice, a court may decline to exercise its territorial competence in the proceeding on the ground that a court of another state is a more appropriate forum in which to hear the proceeding.
(2) A court, in deciding the question of whether it or a court outside British Columbia is the more appropriate forum in which to hear a proceeding, must consider the circumstances relevant to the proceeding, including
(a) the comparative convenience and expense for the parties to the proceeding and for their witnesses, in litigating in the court or in any alternative forum,
(b) the law to be applied to issues in the proceeding,
(c) the desirability of avoiding multiplicity of legal proceedings,
(d) the desirability of avoiding conflicting decisions in different courts,
(e) the enforcement of an eventual judgment, and
(f) the fair and efficient working of the Canadian legal system as a whole.
 Here, I am satisfied that the evidence is overwhelming, that all of the defendants and all the evidence concerning the execution of the will, and deceased’s assets, are in Alberta, as are the witnesses. I am satisfied after considering the interests of the parties to this proceeding and the ends of justice that this court should decline to exercise its territorial competence as Alberta is the more appropriate forum in which to hear these proceedings.
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