Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID)

Posted by Mariel Gerges on 21 May 2021
Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID)

The long-awaited changes to Canada's Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID) Law came into force on March 17, 2021. The amendments came in response to Truchon, a decision from the Superior Court of Quebec.

The eligibility for MAID no longer requires the natural death of the patient to be reasonably foreseeable.

The amendments create two different procedural safeguards for medical practitioners to apply. The first applies to those whose natural death is reasonably foreseeable. The notable amendment with respect to this track is the removal of the minimum 10-day reflection period. The second procedure applies to those whose natural death is not reasonably foreseeable.

Under both procedures, the patient can only make the request for MAID in writing after they have been informed that they have a "grievous and irremediable medical condition."

A "grievous and irremediable medical condition" is one where the patient:

  • has a serious illness, disease or disability (excluding mental illness until March 17, 2023); and
  • is in an advanced state of decline that cannot be reversed; and
  • experiences unbearable physical or mental suffering, caused by their health, which cannot be relieved under conditions the patient considers acceptable.

The amendments clearly require the patient to request MAID in writing after they have been informed of their "grievous and irremediable medical condition". The current legislation does not permit advance requests for MAID, however, Parliament has until March 17, 2023 to address the issue of advance requests.

It is yet to be seen whether future amendments to MAID will alter estate planning for those who do not have a grievous medical condition, or whether courts will uphold Powers of Attorney for Personal Care or Wills with a clear intention to request MAID once they reach a certain threshold of incapacity.

MAID and estate planning is complicated. If you have any questions, please contact us.

Posted in:Estate PlanningMedical Assistance in DyingAssisted SuicideEuthanasiaWill DraftingPower of Attorney for Personal Care  

Recent Amendments to Occupiers' Liability

Posted on 9 April 2021
Recent Amendments to Occupiers' Liability

Recent amendments to the Occupiers' Liability Amendment Act 2020 have changed the notice period relating to injuries from slip and falls on snow and ice. A claimant seeking damages for such personal injuries must provide written notice to the property owner of their claim within 60 days of the incident, or lose the right to sue.

The written notice must include the date, time and location of the incident.

The claim may be brought against an owner, occupier, or independent contractor removing snow or ice on the premises.

There is an exception to the 60-day notice requirement if the slip and fall resulted in death or if the claimant can provide a reasonable justification for their failure to provide notice.

A Condo Corporation, as an occupier, is liable for slip and falls in the common areas of the condo. Common elements generally include the corridors, lobbies, garages, garbage rooms, roof terraces, walkways, and so on.

The drawback of the 60-day notice requirement is that it obliges an injured claimant to act immediately at a time when they may still be suffering from their injuries.

Posted in:CondominiumCondominium LawOccupier's LiabilitySlip and falls  

How is My Will Affected by my Subsequent Marriage?

Posted on 9 April 2021
How is My Will Affected by my Subsequent Marriage?

In Ontario, the Will of a person who later marries is revoked by the marriage and is no longer valid, with a few exceptions (s.15 of the Succession Law Reform Act.

The most common exception is when the Will includes a declaration that it is being made in contemplation of the marriage (s.16(a) of the Succession Law Reform Act.)

A Will including a declaration that it is made in contemplation of the marriage remains valid even after the marriage has been solemnized.

At the time of writing this Article, a subsequent common-law relationship does not revoke the Will.

Posted in:WillsEstate PlanningCommon-Law RelationshipSuccession Law Reform Act  

Absence of Clear Evidence

Posted on 18 January 2019
Absence of Clear Evidence

Elderly father cuts out three of his children

  • What happens when an elderly widowed father gives his house to one of his four children (the one who lives with him)? Can the other three siblings set aside the transfer? In a recent case (Kozusko v Kozusko) the Superior Court held that parents are free to dispose of their property as they see fit, and to prefer one child over the others provided the parents understand clearly the consequences of their actions.
  • Courts today will not interfere with a person's exercise of free will so long as the person is fully aware of what their rights are and of the consequences of their actions. The dissenting children will have an uphill battle to overturn their father's wishes.

Contact us below for more information on how to set up your will to avoid such disputes.

Please Contact Us for Further Details


Posted in:WillsEstate Planning  

B.C. Ruling on Jurisdiction Over Google

Posted on 15 January 2019
B.C. Ruling on Jurisdiction Over Google
  • The Court of Appeal in B.C. has upheld an order requiring Google a foreign entity who was not a party to the original proceedings to remove a company's website from all of its worldwide search results. The Court has sent a message that the Canadian judiciary is "willing to ignore provincial and national borders in order to uphold justice in the business world". Ren Bucholz, a Toronto lawyer, deems this decision 'disastrous' because of its implications on Canadian businesses abroad or for the way countries will regulate what Canadians do here.
  • In making the decision, the Court referred to a European decision of a case involving the right to be forgotten. It was noted that the courts of other jurisdictions have found it necessary to make orders that have international effects. The concern is that Canada took jurisdiction over Google solely because it advertised in B.C., and this can be problematic if this becomes an accepted standard for jurisdiction. Bucholz alludes to a scenario where the Egyptian judiciary decides that it wants certain Google content off the web how is this to be decided? How should local decisions affect the global internet?


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Posted in:Business LawyerCorporate Lawyer  
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