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How do You Disinherit Someone in BC?
Have you recently created your will and contemplated changing its content or provisions? If so, fear not! As a resident of British Columbia, you have the legal right to modify your will as you see fit. In this blog post, we shall delve into inheritance law and explore how you can disinherit someone from your will.
So, without any delay, let’s get on with it!
Disinheritance, simply put, is the deliberate act of excluding an individual from a will. When an individual is barred from appearing in a will, the testator aims to prevent such an individual from benefiting from the distribution of assets, including money, real estate, personal belongings, or investments, when he or she passes on.
It should, however, be noted that the law guiding disinheritance varies across different countries. In British Columbia, for example, the inheritance law gives every will owner the right to alter their will as they see fit; this concept is called testamentary autonomy.
In British Columbia, the legal process involved in a testator intentionally excluding an entity from their last will can be accomplished through two primary methods: omitting the individual from the will altogether or incorporating a disinheritance clause within the testamentary document.
When a testator intentionally omits an individual from their will, such an individual will be barred from inheriting any part of the estate. An individual can also be banned from inheriting from deceased assets if the testator intentionally includes a disinheritance clause in the will. An inheritance clause explicitly states the testator’s intention to disinherit the designated person and outlines the reasons for doing so.
The importance of incorporating an inheritance clause in a will is that it will provide a clear and legally binding statement that explains why an individual is intentionally excluded from a will.
Several reasons can mandate the need to disinherit an entity; in this section, we will briefly discuss some of them.
The ability to disinherit someone can vary depending on the jurisdiction and local laws. In British Columbia, for example, the Wills, Estates, and Succession Act (WESA) governs the rules and regulations regarding disinheriting individuals. That act clearly states that anybody, irrespective of their relationship with the testator, can get disinherited. This means that a testator’s spouse, family members, or even adult children can get disinherited.
Another thing to note is that the British Columbia Wills Variation Act permits the court to rewrite wills to make provisions for the testator’s family members. Eligible will variance claimants including the testator’s spouse and children.
A disinherited family member can contest the will, provided that they have a strong claim. For instance, they may argue that the testator was not in the right frame of mind or didn’t understand the nature and consequences of their actions when creating the will. Also, a disinherited family member may contest the will if someone notices that the testator was coerced or manipulated by someone into making certain provisions or excluding specific beneficiaries. In addition, If a disinherited family member can demonstrate that the will was improperly executed or that it is fraudulent or forged, they may contest it on those grounds.
Seek Legal Advice From Stevens and Company Law Corporation.
Disinheriting someone from an existing will is not as straightforward as one would think because of the legal implications. Thus, before disinheriting someone, hiring a skilled and knowledgeable attorney who can assist in the entire process is always advisable. Call us at 1-250-248-8220 to schedule a consultation.