British Columbia Probate & Estate Administration Practice Manual

Practice Point

Manage your probate and estate matters with confidence

This publication is essential for: practitioners who do estate administration or estate litigation work.

If you work in estate administration, you know there is a high potential for error. Reduce the risk with British Columbia Probate & Estate Practice Manual, which takes you step-by step through handling probate and estate matters in BC. This longstanding manual is the answer to all your probate and estate administration questions, from initial contact with a personal representative to post-grant issues. This manual also covers difficult tax and conflict of laws issues, as well as potential areas for estate litigation.

With this resource, you will be able to:

  • confidently advise personal representatives on how to successfully administer an estate
  • prepare for and make probate and estate administration applications
  • better avoid and handle contentious areas during the estate administration process

Highlights of the 2019 Update include:

  • Captures amendments to the Wills, Estates, and Succession Act and Family Law Act (am. 2019-4-6)
  • a new chapter featuring constructive and resulting trusts
  • new developments regarding the speculation and vacancy tax, additional property transfer tax, the tax on split income, and other tax matters of note to practitioners
  • several new or expanded topics; some examples are: exceptions to the TOSI rules (chapter 1); family property on the death of a spouse (chapter 2); citations under Rule 25-11 (chapter 4); bare trust assets (chapter 5); a table matching Latin terms to their corresponding WESA sections (chapters 5 and 6); changes to the Property Transfer Tax Return (chapter 10); presumptions of fact in proof of solemn form actions (chapter 18); and determining spousal status in wills variation claims (chapter 19)
  • commentary on over 75 new cases
  • updates throughout to incorporate all federal and provincial legislative and regulatory developments since last year’s Update; and all chapters, forms and precedents, checklists, and other features of the manual brought current to March 14, 2019

Editorial Board 

Sandra L. Enticknap, QC — Miller Thomson LLP, Vancouver
Mary B. Hamilton — Alexander Holburn Beaudin & Lang LLP, Vancouver
Genevieve N. Taylor — Legacy Tax + Trust Lawyers, Vancouver
Michelle L. Isaak —DLA Piper (Canada) LLP, Vancouver
Geoffrey W. White — Geoffrey W. White Law Corporation, Kelowna – Counsel, Clark Wilson LLP, Vancouver


Shelley A. Bentley — Shelley Bentley Law Corporation, Vancouver
Jeffrey Bichard — Legacy Tax & Trust Lawyers, Vancouver
Lauren A.E. Blake —  Legacy Tax & Trust Lawyers, Vancouver
Dwight D. Dee — Miller Thomson LLP, Vancouver
Professor Elizabeth R. Edinger — Faculty of Law at Allard Hall, University of BC, Vancouver
Sandra L. Enticknap, QC — Miller Thomson LLP, Vancouver
Andrea E. Frisby — Legacy Tax + Trust Lawyers, Vancouver
Peter J. Glowacki — Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, Vancouver
Suzanne H. Grant — Swift Datoo, Courtenay
Kay E. Gray, CGA, TEP — Grant Thornton LLP, Vancouver
M. Scott Kerwin — Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, Vancouver
Anna Laing — Farris, Vaughan, Wills & Murphy LLP, Vancouver
Roger D. Lee — DLA Piper (Canada) LLP, Vancouver
Helen H. Low, QC — Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP, Vancouver
Sharon A. MacMillan — Miller Thomson LLP, Vancouver
John R. Manning — John R. Manning Law Corporation, Nanaimo
Rose Shawlee — Richards Buell Sutton LLP, Vancouver
Genevieve N. Taylor — Legacy Tax + Trust Lawyers, Vancouver
Ingrid M. Tsui — Alexander Holburn Beaudin + Lang LLP, Vancouver
Richard T. Weiland — Clark Wilson LLP, Vancouver
Mark S. Weintraub, QC with contributions from Amy A. Mortimore, Richard T. Weiland, Rong (Lauren) Liang, Gordon Behan, Areet S. Kaila, and Emily Clough — Clark Wilson LLP, Vancouver
Geoffrey W. White — Geoffrey W. White Law Corporation, Kelowna – Counsel, Clark Wilson LLP
Susan A. Willis — Indigenous Services Canada, Vancouver

Volume 1

  1. Initial Advice for the Personal Representative
  2. Devolution of Assets on Death 
  3. Pre-Application Matters in Estate Grants 
  4. Proceedings Relating to Estate Grants
  5. Applications for Probate and Administration with Will Annexed
  6. Applications for Administration without Will Annexed
  7. Probate Fees
  8. Bringing a Foreign Grant into British Columbia
  9. Applications in the Course of Administration
  10. Transmission and Transfer of Assets in Estate Administration 
  11. Liabilities in Estate Administration 
  12. Taxation of the Deceased
  13. Taxation of Estates and Testamentary Trusts
  14. Special Tax Issues in Estate Administration 
  15. Accounts in Estate Administration
  16. Remuneration of Personal Representatives and Trustees
  17. Remuneration of Lawyers in Estate Administration 
  18. Proof in Solemn Form
  19. Wills Variation Claims
  20. Estates Under the Indian Act
  21. Conflict of Laws in Estate Administration

Volume 2

Forms and Precedents
Initial Advice for the Personal Representative
Pre-application Matters in Estate Grants
Proceedings Relating to Estate Grants
Applications for Estate Grants
Foreign Grants
Applications in the Course of Estate Administration
Transmission and Transfer of Assets in Estate Administration
Liabilities in Estate Administration
Taxation in Estate Administration
Remuneration of lawyers in Estate Administration
Proof in Solemn Form
Wills Variation Claims

Probate Fee Act
Supreme Court Civil Rules 21-6 and 25-1 to 25-16
Tables of Concordance for the WESA and the Current Probate Rules
Trustee Act
Wills, Estates and Succession Act
Wills, Estates and Succession Regulation

Probate and Administration Interview [CL 1]
Probate and Administration Procedure [CL 2]

Case Table

Table of Statutes and Related Materials

“I am an estate and trust litigator. When faced with a new or less than common issue, particularly in administration or planning, my starting point is always CLEBC’s wills, estates, and trusts publications (especially the online versions).

British Columbia Estate Planning & Wealth Preservation along with British Columbia Probate & Estate Administration Practice Manual provide me with current and practical answers, Annotated Estates Practice is an easy way to stay up to date on new cases, and Wills and Personal Planning Precedents embody best practice standards for drafting.

I can’t say enough about how valuable the wills, estates, and trusts resources available through CLEBC truly are.”

Amy Mortimore, Partner, Clark Wilson LLP