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BIG WIN: Summary Judgment in a will challenge hinging on mistaken belief

Apr 10, 2019

Sheila Morris (Wills and Estates) and Danna Fichtenbaum (Wills and Estates) of Minden Gross LLP represented three sisters who obtained a rare summary judgment decision on a will challenge which sought to introduce a new ground for setting aside a will in Ontario: mistaken belief in a material fact.

The deceased testatrix excluded one of her six daughters, Carolynn, from her will on the basis that she had made adequate provision for Carolynn during her lifetime. Carolynn challenged the will, arguing that her mother was mistaken in the belief that money given to Carolynn was a gift, and argued instead that it was repayment of a loan that her mother knew nothing about. The Honourable Madam Justice Speyer found no evidence of the deceased’s mistaken belief and ruled that there was no genuine issue requiring a trial. The law in Ontario therefore remains unchanged with respect to setting aside a will. 

Citation: 2019 ONSC 2186: https://www.canlii.org/en/on/onsc/doc/2019/2019onsc2186/2019onsc2186.html

Image: Sheila Morris, Wills and Estates Lawyer fichtenbaum

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