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Knowledge and Approval To establish testamentary capacity, the testator must have both knowledge and approval of the contents of his or her will. Approval suggests voluntariness. However, it is possible to have capacity that is not subject to undue influence, and yet still be unaware of...

I was interested to learn recently that the word “idiot” comes from the Greek word “idios,” meaning “private world.” Why would it be an insult to say that someone is stuck in his own private world? Because refusing to open up one’s mind to others...

The Elisabeth Bruyère Hospital’s complex palliative care facility has come under scrutiny in the Ottawa Citizen recently. The subtext seems to be that the Bruyère is a publicly funded institution, so it should permit medical assistance in dying (MAID) and related consultations on its premises...

A debate has erupted across Canadian society about due process in the era of #MeToo. Is there a way forward that preserves both the dignity of victims and the rights of the accused? Perhaps we can draw on the ethics of truth and reconciliation. The burden...

The new reality of palliative care in which we are living reminds me of the following tale. There once was a frail elderly man who lived with his son, daughter-in-law and four-year-old grandson. One day, the son became impatient with his elderly father, because in his...

In order to claim spousal support from a former common law spouse, you must satisfy the courts that you and your former spouse qualified as spouses under the law. For couples who are not married, section 29 of the Family Law Act (FLA) defines spouses as...