From: Adam Parachin <>
To: Harrington Matthew P. <>
Date: 30/01/2015 16:32:51 UTC
Subject: RE: Public Policy and Wills - Spence v BMO Trust Co

Spence suggests that giving no reasons in the will might not be enough.  Justice Gilmore looked behind the will to find the discriminatory motive, relying upon an affidavit from a family friend indicating that she had heard the testator allude to discriminatory reasons for excluding his daughter from the will.
Part of what intrigues (or offends) me about Spence is how quickly the court came to the conclusion that it could set aside the testator's will.  One would have thought that that would be viewed as a rather serious step that should be taken in only the most extreme of circumstances and carefully reasoned.  Spence is reminiscent of Murley Estate v Murley [1995] N.J. No. 177 in which the court simply posited without explanation that a religious condition in a private trust is contrary to public policy and that there was no need for "lengthy reasoning".  Is it really that simple?
On 01/30/15, "Harrington Matthew P." <> wrote:
Adam Parachin
Associate Professor
Faculty of Law
University of Western Ontario
(519) 661-2111 Ext. 81445