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Estate Planning

My Parents Are Spending My Inheritance

April 08, 2022 by Nancy Ling

Partner Nancy Ling regularly advises clients in the practice areas of wills, trusts, estate and incapacity planning, estate administration, residential and commercial real estate, property matters, corporate transactions, and business law.

In this edition of Legal Matters, Nancy talks about people's right or entitlement to their inheritance and that you can not collect an inheritance while that person is still alive


I occasionally get questions about people's rights or entitlement to their inheritance. One significant thing to remember is that you cannot inherit something from someone still alive. For example, if your parents spend their money while they're alive, they are not spending your inheritance. If they want to spend all their money, gift it, or give it to charity, that is entirely up to them. If they live to the ripe old age of 120 and need every last penny to support themselves, there may well be nothing left to inherit after they die. However, if someone has already died here in B.C., we have legislation in place that would allow a spouse or a child to ask the court to vary a deceased person's Will; if it does not leave adequate and fair provision for that spouse or child. We call this Wills variation. If you are the spouse or child of someone who has died and that person disinherited you or left you something less than what is fair and adequate, you may be in a position to seek relief from the courts. As always, if you have questions, we are here to help.

If you are in need of legal advice, seek counsel today!