Dependant Support Claims

Dependant support claims can be challenging and emotional at the same time. Having the continuous support of a knowledgeable and trusted lawyer would be a good step in making sure that your legal interests are protected.

The Succession Law Reform Act of Ontario governs all wills and estates in this province. As per the Act, any dependant can file a dependant support claim to enforce their rights. Such a step has substantial logistical and financial implications, and it is vital for trustees and executors to be aware of this.

A testator can choose the beneficiaries of his/ her estate. A testator is a person who makes their own will and has to comply with certain dependant related responsibilities. They need to adhere to the obligation to make provisions and support their dependents.

Who Is Termed as A Dependant?

As per the Ontario Act, testators have a responsibility to provide for their dependents in their will. If a dependant is not provided for, they can file a Dependant Support Claim to claim their share.

A person who was being provided for by the deceased is a dependant. The dependant can also be a person who was obligated to provide support for from the deceased and can include:

  • A common-law spouse, married spouse or an ex-spouse;
  • Any parent which includes both biological and adoptive parents;
  • Any children, including biological and adopted children, adult child, grandchild;
  • Any sibling

How is a Dependant Support Claim filed?

A dependant support claim is time-sensitive. Within 6 months of issuance of the Certificate of Appointment of Estate Trustee, the support claim has to be filed. Upon permission from the court, the claim can be filed at a later time.
All claims need to be supported with adequate evidence which is explaining the dependant’s need for support. The court generally decides these cases on a case-by-case basis based on the strength and facts of the situation and the circumstances.
Once the dependant wins the claim successfully, the court will also decide the appropriate amount of the support amount based on many factors such as:

  • Assets of the dependant at the time of testator’s death;
  • The mental and physical health of the dependant;
  • The ability of the dependants to contribute to their own support;
  • The exact relationship of the testator and the dependant

How We Can Help

At Nanda & Associate Lawyers, our experienced Wills and Estate Lawyers understand your specific circumstances and provide tailored and customized solutions for each of them. If you are an executor or a trustee and you have a dependant support claim filed for the estate which you manage, please call us. If you are a dependant who has not been considered in a will, we can help.

Our Mississauga Wills and Estate Lawyers are available for an initial consultation. Come and experience our quality legal counsel and personalized care we give to each client. We ensure prompt communication and a professional approach to achieve successful outcomes for you.

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