This Lunch and Learn seminar will discuss the role and responsibilities of Will-drafting solicitors, both while drafting the Will and during a Will challenge.
Lawyers owe a duty of care to their clients when drafting their Will, as they do when representing them in all legal matters. Will-drafting lawyers should conduct themselves from the moment they meet a new client bearing in mind that there is a possibility that their Will may eventually be challenged. Take thorough and contemporaneous notes of every meeting and phone call with the testator. If capacity comes into question, be ready to obtain an expert assessment to determine the testator’s capacity, and be sure to corroborate that assessment with your own assessment as to the testator’s capacity to provide you with instructions. Keep LawPRO apprised of troubling developments.
If a Will a lawyer drafted is challenged, the lawyer will almost certainly be a key witness in the dispute. They may even be a respondent in the challenge, particularly if the drafting lawyers failed to take and retain comprehensive notes.
- Steps to determine capacity of testator
- Steps in determining presence of undue influence
- Drafting solicitor as witness
- Drafting solicitor as advocate for the executor
- Dealing with accusations of solicitor’s negligence
In the Media
This article was published by Law360 Canada, part of Lexis Nexis Canada Inc. on June 14, 2023.