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In a statement recently released on its website, the Law Commission of Ontario (“LCO“) has commented that the cost of obtaining a Certificate of Appointment of Estate Trustee (“Certificate“) can be disproportionate to the value of the estate being probated.

In an attempt to address that problem, the LCO has invited submissions from the public with respect to a potential simplified procedure for smaller estates. The size of a “small” estate remains to be determined.  However, the LCO is considering a range of between $50,000 and $100,000.

The LCO hopes that a simplified procedure will guard against estate representatives administering estates without the protection of a Certificate. Further, it is hoped by the LCO that such a process will result in fewer estates, and, consequently, their assets, being abandoned.

In connection with this project, the LCO has drafted a Consultation Paper and will be accepting submissions from the public until December 11, 2014.

Although estates law is far from simple, hopefully the process of navigating a smaller estate can be so.

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