In Ontario, many individuals make Power of Attorney (POA) documents as a way of planning for a time when they become unable to make their own decisions about property, finances or health and personal care.  Through a POA, a person indicates who they choose as their decision-maker (called “the attorney”) in the event of incapacity.  A POA can also contain wishes and directions by the person for their decision-maker to follow.

Unfortunately, disagreements can arise over POA documents.   They may generate family conflict, or give rise to concerns that the appointed decision-maker is not acting properly.  The incapable person may be in a position of vulnerability, unable to advocate for themselves.  In some cases, the person may appear to have made more than one Power of Attorney and there may be questions about which should be followed.

These cases can be highly emotional and involve a high degree of family conflict, with the best interests of a vulnerable person at the heart of the dispute.  Our lawyers are skilled in guiding clients through various aspects of Power of Attorney Ontario disputes, including:

  • Advising attorneys on their duties, obligations and powers under a POA;
  • Challenging the validity of POA documents;
  • Defending the validity of POA documents;
  • Challenging the actions of attorneys who are acting dishonestly, improperly or otherwise not in the best interests of the incapable person;
  • Challenging abuse of POA documents;
  • Seeking accountings from attorneys for property, who can be compelled to produce their accounting records and explain the transactions; and
  • Assisting attorneys or other family members in responding to passing of accounts applications.