OBA Trusts and Estates Law Section
Bill 245, Accelerating Access to Justice Act, 2021 (“Bill 245”) received Royal Assent on April 19, 2021, bringing significant reform to Ontario estate law.
Vitual Witnessing of Wills and Powers of Attorney
In response to the outbreak of COVID-19, the Ontario government passed an emergency order, O. Reg 129/20, to temporarily permit the virtual witnessing of wills and powers of attorney so as to allow the public to execute those documents in a safe, socially-distanced manner. Bill 245’s amendments to the Succession Law Reform Act (“SLRA”) and the Substitute Decisions Act, 1992 sanction virtual witnessing as a permanent option available to the public going forward, should one prefer to execute one’s documents through a virtual platform rather than in person.