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As mentioned in our COVID-19 communication, many of our lawyers and staff are working remotely and we continue to remain open and serve our clients. All employees have access to their electronic mail, telephone messaging systems, and electronic files needed for a seamless transition to our remote environment. 

 

 

Kathryn Balter

Partner

Toronto

PROFILE

Kathryn's practice is focused on helping clients achieve their estate-planning goals by providing advice on wills, trusts, the transfer of assets, powers of attorney, and estate administration. She works in partnership with her clients to help them navigate complex matters and to protect and plan for the transfer of their personal assets.

Kathryn is active in the estates and trusts bar and is a former member of the Ontario Bar Association (OBA) Executive for Trusts and Estates law.  While on the Executive Committee for the OBA Trusts and Estates Law section, Kathryn spearheaded the Make a Will Month initiative that has provided hundreds of public information sessions across Ontario, partnering with the Toronto Public Library, and actively participated in the development of emergency legislation to address the Covid-19 pandemic in Ontario relating to the execution of Wills and Powers of Attorney.

 Kathryn is also a member of the Society of Trusts and Estates Practitioners (STEP).  Kathryn has contributed to the OBA Trusts and Estates Law newsletter and to the firm’s publications.  She speaks at various professional and public programs on the topic of wills, estates and substitute decision making.

 

Publications

APRIL 24 2020

Update on Virtual Witnessing of Wills and Powers of Attorney: Signing in Counterparts Now Temporarily Permitted in Ontario

APRIL 13 2020

Virtual Witnessing of Wills and Powers of Attorney Now Temporarily Permitted in Ontario

On April 7, 2020 The Lieutenant Governor in Council made an order under s. 7.0.2(4) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, to temporarily permit virtual execution of Wills and Powers of Attorney through audio-visual communication technology during the COVID-19 emergency.

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MARCH 26 2020

E-Wills - Legislative Change a Necessity in the COVID-19 Crisis

The Ontario Government has ordered the mandatory closure of all non-essential workplaces effective as of Tuesday March 24th at 11:59 pm. for a 14 day period, with the potential of lengthening that period as the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds. While the professional services of lawyers have been listed as one of the essential workplaces excluded from the mandatory closure, the delivery of estate planning legal services is particularly challenging in these trying times.

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FEBRUARY 04 2019

Multiple Wills Resurrected

The recent woes of the estates bar in connection with multiple Wills has been resolved positively by the Divisional Court's decision in the Re Milne appeal decision issued on January 24, 2019.

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DECEMBER 21 2018

An Update on Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) Reform

On November 22, 2018, the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services announced some very vague plans for reform. With respect to ODSP, the announcement stated that the intention was to "[r]edesign [ODSP] to provide annualized income support with far fewer reporting requirements for Ontarians with severe disabilities."

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DECEMBER 10 2018

Multiple Wills Make a Comeback

The technique of using multiple wills, which became the standard among estate planning solicitors as a method of limiting the amount of probate fees (now called Estate Administration Tax), took a beating in the Re Milne decision of September 11, 2018.

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OCTOBER 12 2018

Multiple Wills: A Little Worse for Wear but Still Worthwhile

Following a handful of disconcerting endorsements in a number of probate applications culminating in the recent decision in the Milne Estates, an issue has been raised respecting the validity of the use of multiple wills in Ontario.

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AUGUST 10 2018

UPDATE: BIG CHANGES TO GIFTS, TRUSTS, AND SAVINGS FOR ODSP RECIPIENTS

Subsequent to the writing of this article, the Ford Government announced that the initiatives announced in Chapter 1, Section 7 of the previous government’s 2018 Budget (which includes the New Regulation discussed in the article) will not proceed at this time.  

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JUNE 13 2018

Congratulations to Kathryn Balter on her OBA Trusts & Estates Law Section Executive Appointment.

Congratulations to Kathryn Balter on her recent appointment to the 2018-2019 OBA Trusts & Estates Law Section Executive. 

MARCH 26 2018

Capping Political Contributions From Beyond The Grave

Although not a bequest that I often see in my estate planning practice, some people with distinct political leanings have historically taken advantage of an exemption from limits to political contributions in each calendar year by making such contribution in their Wills. Prior to the introduction of Bill C-23, dubbed the Fair Elections Act, which received Royal Assent on June 19, 2014, politically-inclined individuals could take advantage of former subsection 405(2) of the Canada Elections Act, S.C. 2000, c.9 (the "Act"), which permitted unlimited political contributions by way of testamentary disposition...

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FEBRUARY 08 2018

Emerging Issues in Estates, Trusts and Incapacity Law

Kathryn is Chair's this OBA Institute trusts & estates law program that will explore recent case law and statutory amendments, as well as essential practice management advice. Click here for more information and to register.

NOVEMBER 07 2017

Wills, Powers of Attorney for Property and Powers of Attorney for Personal Care

Most people are hesitant when it comes to dealing with their Wills and Powers of Attorney. Death and Disability are not easy subjects to deal with. Unfortunately, these are realities that are better dealt with than not...

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NOVEMBER 01 2017

November is Make a Will Month

Throughout November, Make a Will Month will see more than 40 legal information sessions presented by OBA members, including Mary Wahbi and Kathryn Balter of our Wills & Estates group, at libraries and community hubs in Toronto, Ottawa, Hamilton and Cambridge.

Education

University of British Columbia, J.D., 2011
University of Western Ontario, B.A., 2008

Memberships

  • STEP Canada
  • CBA
  • OBA, Trusts & Estates Law Section, former Executive Committee Member
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