Lost in Limitations – Estate Litigation
Lost in Limitations: BC Estate Litigation Lawyers
The law regarding limitation dates is confusing for both lawyers and non-lawyers alike. In layman’s terms, a limitation date is the deadline for when you may file a claim. Here in British Columbia, there are a number of different acts that govern limitation periods. The new Limitation Act, SBC 2012, came into force on June 1, 2013. The new Limitation Act attempted to simplify limitation periods by introducing a two year (from the date of discovery) period as well as a 30 year ultimate limitation period and a 15 year from-occurrence limitation period.
Important Limitation Dates from the Wills, Estates and Succession Act
In wills variation litigation, the (still) relatively new Wills, Estates and Succession Act which came into force on March 30, 2014 also provides important limitation dates. Section 61 of the Wills, Estates and Succession Act states:
61 (1) A proceeding commenced by a person claiming the benefit of this Division must not be heard by the court unless
(a) the proceeding is commenced within 180 days from the date the representation grant is issued in British Columbia,
(b) a copy of the initiating pleading or petition has been served on the executor of the will no later than 30 days after the expiry of the 180 day period referred to in paragraph (a) unless the court, before or after the expiration of the 30 days, extends the time for service, and
(c) if there are minor children of the will-maker, or if the spouse or a child of the will-maker is mentally incapable, a copy of the initiating pleading or petition has been served on the Public Guardian and Trustee.
This means that if you are person entitled to challenge a will (a child or spouse of the deceased) you must commence your action within 180 days of the date the Representation Grant is issues and you must serve the filed court documents on the executor of the will you are challenging no later than 30 days after the expiry of 180 day period. If you believe you have been treated unfairly in a will by your deceased parent or spouse, it is important to contact a lawyer right away.
The Kushner Law Group: BC Estate Litigation Lawyers
Contact the Kushner Law Group in Vancouver BC today to schedule your complimentary consultation. For a Estate Litigation consultation, call our BC law firm at 604-629-0432 or contact us online to learn more about how we can help you.