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Crossing the void

Jan Goddard untangles the conflict of laws that can exist between the UK and Canada over incapacity issues

2 October 2012

The ties between Canada and the UK run long and deep. It is not surprising, then, that residents of the UK may own property in Canada, spend extended time in Canada or both.

Should this affect planning for incapacity? The answer is yes. In these circumstances, a client’s plan for incapacity should encompass property located in Canada, as well as the possibility that the onset of a client’s incapacity may occur while the client is in Canada.

Legal regimes

How this is to be done is made complicated by the fact that in Canada the laws respecting powers of attorney, health directives, substitute decision making and the like are under provincial and territorial jurisdiction. This means that there are thirteen different legal regimes for substitute decision making in Canada.

The holiday cottage in Ontario, the quaint seaside ...

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