Settling an Estate in BC

  • Recorded on: June 3, 2020

  • Length: 60 minutes


Do you have questions about settling an estate in British Columbia? In this webinar, lawyer Nicole Garton talks about probate — what it is, when it’s required, and when you might need help from a lawyer. Paralegal Stacie Ayukawa offers tips on completing common forms, and Laura Hill explains the role of the probate registry and steps you can take to make your probate application successful.


In this webinar, you will learn:

  • What probate means and how it fits within the estate administration process. [8:50]

  • When probate is required and when it is not. [9:15]

  • The difference between probating a will and administering an estate. [11:20]  

  • The difference between an executor and an administrator. [13:15

  • Exactly when an executor’s responsibilities take effect. [14:25]

  • The extent of an executor’s duties and responsibilities. [14:50]

  • Four ways to challenge a will. [16:00

  • Who has the right to challenge a will. [18:30]

  • What happens when there is no will — who takes charge of the estate and who gets what (section 130 of the Wills, Estates and Succession Act). [19:40

  • What notice is required when the executor is also the sole beneficiary of the estate, or when the parties entitled to notice cannot be found. [24:50

  • How to know when a lawyer is needed for a probate application. [26:15]

  • The two main roles of the probate registry. [29:45]

  • How long the probate application process takes. [31:30]

  • How the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the time it takes for the registry to process probate applications. [32:55]

  • Five tips for a successful probate application. [36:20]

  • The type of questions the probate registry can answer. [40:10]

  • Resources for non-lawyers making a probate application. [42:40]

  • Tips for completing an application for search of wills notice. [44:45]

  • Tips for completing a form P2, submission for estate grant (under Rule 25-3(2)). [46:55]

  • Tips for completing a form P10, statement of assets and liabilities (under Rule 25-3(2)). [50:25]

  • Factors to consider if you’re asked to be an executor. [54:05

  • Steps to take if an executor is not disclosing information about a will. [55:20

  • Resources about settling an estate. [57:40]


Nicole Garton

Nicole Garton

Nicole Garton is a lawyer and mediator with Heritage Law and the President of Heritage Trust. Her estates practice is focused on estate planning, estate administration, and assisting parties to resolve estate disputes. Nicole is the past chair of the Canadian Bar Association Wills and Trusts Subsection (Vancouver), a member the Society of Estate and Trust Practitioners (STEP), and the Estate Planning Council of BC. Nicole is the author of The Heritage Trust Estate Administration Boot Camp.

Stacie Ayukawa

Stacie Ayukawa

Stacie is a paralegal with Heritage Law. She has presented and chaired courses with the Continuing Legal Education Society of BC, and is an instructor at Capilano University in the faculty of legal studies where she teaches wills and estates law courses. Stacie has a paralegal diploma from Capilano University and an estate and trust professional designation from the Canadian Securities Institute. She also has a masters degree in liberal studies from Simon Fraser University.

Laura Hill

Laura Hill is a training analyst with the probate & bankruptcy registry at the Vancouver Law Courts.

Attendee feedback

"Great info from all three presenters, especially Laura Hill (as good to have perspective from the courts)."

"Your presenters are very knowledgeable on the topics they are handling and they speak clearly."

"Thank you — very informative and helpful. Kudos to the organizers & presenters."

"Thank you for doing this. The overall conclusion is that advance planning saves a world of pain and money. Time to draft a will and get busy. Keep up the great webinars, they are so helpful."

"One of the better Zoom presentations I've seen since COVID-19!"

Resources mentioned in this webinar

From Heritage Law: 

From People’s Law School:

Forms & laws:

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