How to Dispute a Power of Attorney in Ontario

A Power of Attorney is a legal document that one person (the grantor) uses to give another person (the attorney) the ability to make decisions on their behalf.  When disputes arise respecting a power of attorney, they can be resolved in court.

Many people consider a Power of Attorney to be something that only older people need to worry about, but younger people can benefit from them as well.  A Power of Attorney can protect you and your family during any period when you are unable to make legal decisions, but are still alive.

Our Richmond Hill estate litigation lawyers can:

  • advise you regarding whether a Power of Attorney can help protect you and your family
  • ensure that your Power of Attorney is valid and does not create disputes
  • help you resolve any dispute that arise respecting the Power of Attorney of a family member or loved-one
  • advise you how to dispute a Power of Attorney that you believe is invalid or is being abused.

Contact us for legal assistance today if you require legal assistance with respect to disputing a Power of Attorney in Ontario.

Two main types of Powers of Attorney in Ontario

In Ontario, there are two commonly-used Powers of Attorney.  The Power of Attorney for Personal Care grants your attorney the right to make decisions regarding your personal care, which includes emergency health care decisions and decisions regarding placement in a nursing or long-term care home.  It only takes effect if you become mentally incapable of making your own decisions.

The Continuing Power of Attorney grants your attorney the right to make decisions regarding your finances and property.  It takes effect immediately after it is signed, unless you indicate otherwise.

Common disputes relating to Powers of Attorney

Problems relating to a Power of Attorney can arise when the attorney misuses or abuses the powers granted to them.  This often occurs because they do not properly understand the role of attorney, but it can also be an act of fraud.  If you are acting as an attorney for a family member or friend, consulting an estate lawyer about your duties and your role can help you avoid liability.

If more than one attorney is named on a Power of Attorney, conflicts can arise when the attorneys are unable to agree on a course of action.  If you need to name more than one attorney, there are ways to prevent and minimize this type of conflict.  Always contact a lawyer before naming more than one attorney.

An improperly executed or witnessed Power of Attorney can lead to problems as well, particularly if the grantor’s mental capacity is in question by the time anyone notices a problem with the document.  It is important to ensure that your Power of Attorney is executed properly and that your attorney knows how to locate the original signed version.  Some financial institutions will need to see the original before they permit your attorney to access your accounts.

Contact Our Richmond Hill Wills & Estates And/Or Estate Litigation Lawyers Today

Our Richmond Hill estate litigation lawyers are well-versed in dealing with Power of Attorney disputes.  If you need advice regarding how to dispute a Power of Attorney in Ontario, contact us today. A member of our legal team will be pleased to assist you.

*Disclaimer: Please note the content in this blog is not intended to act as legal advice. For more specific legal assistance please consult with a lawyer.