In this blog, I am going to focus on one of
the pieces of provincial legislation that guides the activities of an estate trustee;
the Estates Act Ontario. In my blog TRUSTEE OF DECEASED ESTATE: WHAT
A TORONTO BANKRUPTCY TRUSTEE KNOWS, I set the stage by going over some basics when it
comes to a deceased estate and why a LIT would be very comfortable with those basic requirements
for an administration of a deceased estate. In the blog, TRUSTEE OF PARENTS ESTATE: DO
I REALLY HAVE TO?, I described why in some cases parents trying to do the right thing
by making all their children an estate trustee could turn out very wrong. In this and the next two blogs, I want to
focus on the three main Ontario statutes that govern the conduct, duties and responsibilities
of an estate trustee of a deceased estate. The three statutes that I will talk about
are: Estates Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. E.21;
Estates Administration Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. E.22; and
Trustee Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. T.23 As you have probably guessed by now, in this
blog, I will show how a bankruptcy trustee would be very familiar with the workings of
the Estates Act Ontario. Provisions a LIT is familiar with Jurisdiction Section 5 of the Estates Act Ontario states
that letters of administration shall not be granted to a person not residing in Ontario.
Similarly, a bankruptcy trustee must be licensed by the Superintendent of Bankruptcy in each
province the LIT wishes to practice in. Posting of security Section 14(2) of the Estates Act Ontario requires
that the administrator appointed to administer a deceased estate may be required to post
security as the court might require. Section 5(3)(c) of the Bankruptcy and Insolvency
Act (Canada) (BIA) states that the Superintendent of Bankruptcy can require the posting of a
bond as security. The posting of security is another common
area that a LIT understands well. Court can appoint Section 29 of the Estates Act Ontario deals
with the appointment of an estate trustee. This section gives the Ontario Superior Court
of Justice the authority to appoint an estate trustee. Section 243(1) of the BIA gives the Court
the power to appoint a receiver. So, assessing the appropriateness of acting as a Court officer
and providing consent to do so is something a LIT is quite familiar with. Accounts to be rendered Section 39 of the Estates Act Ontario requires
the estate trustee to “…render a just and full account…” of the estate trustee’s
activities. The LIT is fully familiar with this process. In both a Court-appointed receivership
and a bankruptcy administration, the LIT must submit full and detailed accounts showing
its activities, fees and disbursements for approval by the Court. This approval process
is called taxation. Admitting and disallowing claims Sections 44 and 45 of the Estates Act Ontario
deals with the procedures to be followed in contesting claims made against the deceased’s
estate. The LIT is very familiar with this process. Section 135 of the BIA deals with
the admission and disallowance of proofs of claim and proofs of security. Disputes as to ownership Section 46 of the Estates Act Ontario describes
the process for handling the claim by any third party to ownership of personal property
in the estate not exceeding $800 in value. There are procedures in the BIA that a LIT
must follow when faced with claims of ownership of property by a third party which is in the
possession of the bankrupt. S I hope that in this blog I have successfully
made the case that the provisions of the Estates Act Ontario outlining the responsibilities
of an estate trustee tracks very closely what a LIT does in either a Court-appointed receivership
or bankruptcy administration. Therefore, the LIT is used to acting as a
Court officer and could very easily perform the requirements and duties of an estate trustee
as described in the Estates Act Ontario. If you have any questions about a deceased
estate and the need for an estate trustee, whether it is solvent or insolvent, contact
the Ira Smith Team. We have decades and generations of experience in helping people and companies
overcome their financial problems. You don’t need to suffer; we can end your pain.