Kelly Charlebois is a tenacious advocate who specializes in estates and trusts litigation. She persuasively and effectively advances her clients’ interests and achieves positive and cost-effective results for them in a broad range of areas. Kelly’s clients praise her strategic approach to handling their files.
Kelly has particular expertise in matters relating to estates, trusts, and fiduciary and capacity-related proceedings. Kelly has successfully represented individuals, institutions, and charitable organizations in this area, including in will challenges, will interpretations, guardianship applications, dependant support applications, passing-of-account applications, and proceedings involving breach of trust and breach of fiduciary duty. She also regularly advises financial institutions and trust companies in relation to estates, powers of attorney, capacity issues and the administration of estates during litigation.
Kelly enjoys writing and speaking on a variety of topics. She is a contributing author to Miller Thomson’s publication Miller Thomson on Estate Planning and is the national leader of the firm’s Estates and Trusts Litigation Group.
Drawing on her strong commercial litigation background, which has provided her with extensive advocacy experience at all court levels, Kelly is well positioned to represent her clients in complex estates and commercial disputes.
Professional achievements & leadership
- The Best Lawyers in Canada – Trusts and Estates, 2015 – 2019
- The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, Estate & Personal Tax Planning, 2017 – 2018
- Chambers High Net Worth Guide, Private Wealth Law – Canada, 2017 – 2018
- Mortgage Investment Corp. of Eastern Ontario v. Szpivak, 2014 Carswell Ont. 6325 (S.C.) (successful in having a professional negligence action dismissed on the basis of the expiry of the limitation period)
- Re Grieco Estate, 2013 ONSC 2465 (CanLII) (successful in preventing a $1 million payment pursuant to a settlement agreement from being paid out in priority to contingent creditors)
- Faris v. Eftimovksi et al, 2012 ONSC 1126 (CanLII) aff’d 2013 ONCA 360 (CanLII) (successful in having multi-defendant action dismissed for delay)
- Babiana v. Dobson, 2012 ONSC 3431 (successful in having action dismissed at a preliminary stage on the basis of it being frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of process)
- Re Kaptyn (2010), 102 O.R. (3d) 1 (Ont. S.C.) (represented beneficiary in application for advice and directions on numerous will interpretation issues)
- Re Gibbon Estate, 2010 CarswellOnt 3799 (represented Estate Trustee in application for interpretation of various testamentary documents)
- Desjardins Credit Union Inc. v. Grenville-Wood,  O.J. No. 226, aff’d 2011 ONCA 512, leave to appeal denied  S.C.C.A. No. 426 (successful action by financial institution for loss sustained in connection with the deposit of a materially altered cheque)
- Grey & Bruce Mutual Insurance Co. v. MacKinnon Plumbing & Heating,  O.J. No. 5448 (S.C.J.) (successful motion for summary judgment based on principles of subrogation and equitable contribution)
- Kaptyn Estate, Re. (2008), 43 E.T.R. (3d) 219 (successful on trial of issue as to whether testator had testamentary capacity at time of execution of codicil)
- Jobsearch Canada Inc. v. Matrix,  O.J. No. 2556 (successful in resisting motion for injunction seeking a prohibition on solicitation)
- African Caribbean Grocery Inc. v. 732718 Ontario Inc.,  O.J. No. 1575 (successful motion for judgment dismissing the plaintiff’s claim)
- Brookfield Lepage Johnson Controls Facilities Management Services Ltd. v. Ontario (Labour Relations Board) (2007), C.L.L.C. 220 (Div. Court) (successful in resisting motion to quash an application for judicial review)
- B. (R.) v. Toronto Catholic District School Board,  O.J. No. 3700 (Div. Court) (successful in responding to an application for judicial review of the decision of the respondent school board to conduct an assessment prior to deciding on placement)
- Oz Optics Ltd. v. Dimensional Communications Inc.,  O.J. No. 2816 (C.A.) (successful in responding to an appeal from a decision allowing an application for enforcement of a foreign judgment and motion for summary judgment)
- VW Credit v. Elguindy,  O.J. No. 104 (C.A.) (successful in responding to an appeal to set aside summary judgment)
- Garvey v. Meyers. Transport Ltd.,  F.C.J. No. 2093 (Fed. Ct.), affirmed  F.C.J. No. 1864 (Fed. C.A.) (successful in responding to application for judicial review of a decision of the Canadian Human Rights Commission)
- Sutherland v. Birks (2003), 65 O.R. (3d) 812 (C.A.) (appeal and cross-appeal in an oppression remedy claim); application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed,  S.C.C.A. No. 424
Papers and Presentations
- “Questions from the Bench”, OBA Essential Evidence Series for Estate Litigators, May 2018
- “Planning and Litigation: Financial Products and Their Implications to Your Practice”, OBA Trusts and Estates Law, October 20, 2016
- “Building A Successful Solicitor’s Wills and Estates Practice: A Mentorship Event”, OBA Trusts and Estates Mentorship program, October 6, 2016
- “Advisors Roundtable on the Planning and Litigation of Closely Held Corporations”: American Bar Association – Section of International Law Fall Meeting, 2015
- “Key Advice to Maximize Your Management and Guardianship Plans,” Ontario Bar Association, February 24, 2015
- “Offers to Settle,” OBA Sunrise Series, November 26, 2013
- Presented to Junior Trusts and Estates Practitioners on various substantive and practice-related issues, October 2013
- “Disappointed Beneficiaries, Testamentary Independence and Public Policy,” June 2012
- Trustee Compensation: How Much Can an Executor Take? presented at CAGP-ACPDP Conference, April 2011
- “Certificates of Pending Litigation”, OBA Conference on Your First Collection II Deadbeat Dilemmas: How to Get Paid, November 19, 2008
Other Editorial Contributions
- Co-editor, Wealth Matters, Miller Thomson’s Private Client Services Newsletter
- “Family Law Issues in Estate Litigation”, Key Developments in Estates and Trusts Law in Ontario, 2016-2017 Edition
- “Dependants’ Relief Claims under the Succession Law Reform Act”, Key Developments in Estates and Trusts Law in Ontario, 2015-2016 Edition
- Miller Thomson on Estate Planning, 2013
- Ademption: Beware the Potential Failure of Gifts, Wealth Matters, Spring 2011
- Supreme Court of Canada Rules on Joint Account Cases, Wealth Matters, October 2007
- Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners
- Advocates’ Society
- Canadian Bar Association
- Ontario Bar Association
- Toronto Lawyers’ Association
- University of Toronto Alumni Student Mentor Program
Bar admissions & education
- Ontario Bar, 2001
- LL.B., University of Toronto, 1999
- B.B.A. (honours), Wilfrid Laurier University, 1994
Miller Thomson lawyers recognized in The Best Lawyers in Canada 2019
In the just released 2019 edition of The Best Lawyers in Canada, 144 Miller Thomson lawyers from across the country have been recognized for their expertise in 47 areas of law. This includes 6 lawyers who were awarded “Lawyer of the Year” in...
Miller Thomson repeats top ranking in Chambers High Net Worth Guide
Miller Thomson’s Private Client Services Group has once again received a top Band 1 ranking in the 2018 Chambers High Net Worth Guide for Private Wealth Law – Canada. Through an extensive independent research process, Chambers and Partners ranks the...
Miller Thomson recognized in 2018 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
In the recently released 2018 edition of the Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory, 90 Miller Thomson lawyers across 35 areas of law have been recognized for their industry-leading advisory expertise. These rankings are the culmination of an extensive annual peer review process...
Miller Thomson receives top ranking by Chambers for Private Wealth Law – Canada
Miller Thomson is ranked as Band 1 (highest ranking) for Private Wealth Law – Canada in Chambers High Net Worth Guide. The guide ranks the leading lawyers and law firms for the international private wealth market in key jurisdictions around...
Miller Thomson recognized in 2017 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
In the recently released 2017 edition of the Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory, 79 Miller Thomson lawyers across 30 areas of law have been recognized for their industry-leading advisory expertise. These latest rankings are the culmination of an extensive annual peer...
Miller Thomson lawyers recognized in The Best Lawyers in Canada 2017
126 Miller Thomson lawyers from across the country and in numerous areas of law have been recognized for their expertise in the 2017 edition of The Best Lawyers in Canada. This result is up from 122 lawyers ranked last year....
Kelly Charlebois speaks on financial products and implications on law practice
The seminar on “Planning and Litigation: Financial Products and Their Implications to Your Practice” is part of the Ontario Bar Association’s 2016-2017 Trusts and Estates Passport Series.
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Dependant’s Relief Claims under the Succession Law Reform Act
Key Developments in Estates and Trusts Law in Ontario, 2015-2016 Edition, Chapter 11
Wills and Probate Planning
Chapter in Miller Thomson on Estate Planning
Ademption: Beware the Potential Failure of Gifts
Introduction Professionals involved in the preparation of Wills should be made aware of the potential consequences of the doctrine of ademption. Put simply, the doctrine provides that you cannot bequeath what you do not own. For example, if a testator’s Will...