serving the fAMILY:
Critical Insights on Issues Impacting Families in corporate, estates and family law

Wednesday, February 3, 2021- 9:00 am to 4:00 pm  | Thursday, February 4, 2021 - 9:00 am to 1:00pm

From estate planning to family-owned businesses to marriage and separation, there are a myriad of legal issues impacting families across a diverse range of practice areas. Join us for this unique event as we bring together lawyers practising in estates, family, corporate and other legal areas, to unravel the complexities, examine recent developments and better understand the impacts of other legal areas on your practice. This comprehensive event will ensure that your legal toolkit is packed with the key information you need to provide your clients with relevant and timely advice.  


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Day 1 – February 3, 2021


PLENARY: What We Wish You Knew

In this opening plenary session, join our expert panel of estates, family and corporate lawyers as they share valuable insights on how critical issues in their own practice impact or are impacted by other legal areas. We will examine: 

  • What estates lawyers wish non-estates lawyers knew about estates law 

  • What family lawyers wish non-family lawyers knew about family law 

  • What corporate lawyers wish non-corporate lawyers knew about corporate law 


Georgina Carson, MacDonald & Partners LLP
Chris Stankiewicz, Claims Counsel, LawPro
Lori Duffy, WeirFoulds LLP
Allan Ritchie, Loopstra Nixon LLP

Moderator: Kathy Batycky, Stoner & Company Family Law


Family Law Legislative Update

  • Preparing for the implementation of Divorce Act and Children’s Law Reform Act changes 

  • How have appeal routes changed and where do we go from here? 

  • The latest on the federal domestic violence screening tool 


Annie Kenet, Kenet Family Law
Vanessa Lam, The Law Office of Vanessa Lam

Business Succession Part 1: Effectively Using Shareholder Agreements for Estate Planning Purposes

Shareholder agreements can be a vital element of business succession and estate planning for small businesses.  

  • Key advice for drafting Shareholders Agreements that align with the estate plan 

  • How to guarantee income from a testamentary trust to ensure a minimum income threshold 

  • Important considerations in gifting shares to family members 

  • Why family members need a shareholders agreements 


Matthew Getzler, Minden Gross LLP
Errol Tenenbaum, Robins Appleby LLP


Family Law Implications for Gifts and Inheritances

Gifts and inheritances are generally understood to be protected from claims in the event of separation. However, when might these gifts or inheritances be at risk? 

  • What you need to know about exclusions and tracing 

  • Determining income for support purposes when gifts or inheritances have been used to support the family pre-separation 


Karon Bales, Bales Beall LLP
Jennifer Wall, Harrison Pensa LLP


Setting a Family Business Up for Success

  • Key considerations for ownership and governance structures 

  • Preventative measures to reduce or address conflict 

  • Managing conflicts between working and non-working family members 

  • Who should own shares 


Aarondeep Bains, Aird & Berlis LLP
Andréa Brinston, Pallett Valo LLP

Financial Contributions to the Matrimonial Home

  • What are the implications of financial contributions to a matrimonial home? 

  • Latest caselaw on distinguishing between a loan and gift 

  • What evidence do you need to prove a loan? 

  • Helpful insights for drafting loan documentation 

  • Understanding the use of a mortgage on title 

  • Making sense of an executor obligations re: calling promissory notes 

  • Constructive and resulting trust claims 


Kristine Anderson, Bales Beall LLP Fareen Jamal, Jamal Family Law


Jessica Feldman Chittley, Bales Beall LLP

12:15PM - 12:45PM Virtual Networking Opportunity

All You Need to Know About Life Insurance

  • Where does life insurance fit into estate planning? Valuable opportunities and best practices 

  • Life insurance as security for child or spousal support 

    • What you need to include in your Separation Agreement and when you need to refer your client to trust counsel 

    • Reporting letter advice 


Elke Rubach, Rubach Wealth
Michael Zalev, Epstein Cole LLP

Dealing with Family Business Issues on Separation

  • Understanding corporate financial statements and what they can tell you about income and value 

  • The nuances of an “if and when” division of corporate interests 

  • When do you need to retain a Certified Business Valuator or other financial expert? 


Anna Barrett, Marmer Penner Inc. Heather Hansen, McCarthy Hansen & Company LLP


Parenting and Guardianship for Children with Disabilities Over the Age of Majority

  • Distinguishing between authority under the Divorce Act and the Children’s Law Reform Act 

  • Practical challenges for litigation involving a child with a disability who is near, at or over the age of majority 

  • Making sense of proceedings under the Substitute Decisions Act 


Nimali Gamage, Goddard Gamage LLP
Robert Shawyer, Shawyer Family Law & Mediation

Business Succession Part 2:
Critical Issues in Implementation and Administration

  • What actually happens when a business owner dies? Wills versus trusts 

  • Winding up corporations after death 

  • Implementing a transition plan 

  • Using family meetings as part of business transition 

  • What is the role of the executor? 

  • Post-mortem tax planning – what to look for and when to call in the experts 


Maureen Berry, Fasken, Martineau DuMoulin LLP
Susannah Roth, O’Sullivan Estates Lawyers LLP

2:35 PM

Family Law Year in Review: Critical Decisions from the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court

  • Examine the most interesting, relevant and important Court of Appeal decisions of 2020 

  • The Supreme Court’s word on retroactive child support –  Unraveling Michel v. Graydon and Colucci v. Colucci  


Maneesha Mehra, Goldhart & Associates
Helena Likwornik, Counsel, Court of Appeal for Ontario


PLENARY: The Ins and Outs of Family Trusts 

  • Consequences of pre and post-marriage estate freezes 

  • The implications of marriage and separation for family trusts 

  • Understanding disclosure obligations and other essential considerations when establishing a family trust 

  • Exploring the usefulness of a marriage contract for family trusts and the impact of not having a marriage contract 

  • How family courts deal with discretionary trust interests 


Jesse Brodlieb, Brodlieb Legal
Shawn Richard, Lenkinski, Carr & Richard, LLP
Jennifer Stebbing, Ross and McBride LLP

Moderator: Emily Hubling, Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP



DAY 2 - FEBRUARY 4,2021 

9:05 AM

Trusts and Estates Law Legislative and Caselaw Update

Get a critical update on recent decisions, legislative changes and other developments in trusts and estates law.


Pia Hundal, Miller Thomson LLP

Utilizing Marriage Contracts to Protect Business Interests​​

  • Why your client needs a marriage contract
  • Determining the value of a business interest
  • Client identification and management challenges where a parent is the one pursuing a marriage contract between their child and his/her fiancée
  • & Tricky disclosure issues in a family setting
  • How best to deal with changes over time – negotiating an addendum versus drafting to take into account changes over time


Oren Weinberg, Boulby Weinberg LLP
Kavita Bhagat, Kavita V. Bhagat Professional Corporation

Moderator: Lisa Kadoory, Kadoory Cho Family Law

9:30 AM

Your Guide to Charitable Planning

  • What are the options for families?
  • Tax-efficient charitable giving
  • Benefits of family foundations, including public versus private family foundations
  • The role of charitable planning in the context of the larger plan


Paul Nazareth, Canadian Association of Gift Planners
Amanda Stacey, Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP


Critical Drafting Advice for Shareholder Agreements Between Family Members ​

  • The importance of having an agreement and getting the parties on board 

  • How family businesses get to the 4th generation 


Caroline Samara, McMillan LLP
David Mills, Mills & Mills LLP

Moderator: Jake Vogl, Momentum Law

Family Cottages, Rental Properties and Other Property Interests

• Examining the implications of different ownership structures

• Key considerations for inter vivos and testamentary trusts

• Dealing with the real estate in marriage contracts or cohabitation agreements

• Critical advice for drafting co-ownership agreements


Julie Layne, Layne Family Law P.C. Douglas Buchmayer, Gowling WLG (Canada) LLP
​Sara Beheshti, Barrister and Solicitor


Kelly Watson, Nathens Siegel LLP


PLENARY: Family Dynamics: Professionalism and Ethics Challenges

A particular challenge for lawyers dealing with families is managing the implications of these personal relationships, particular when family members are in conflict with one another. Join us to gather best practices on how to overcome the hurdles imposed by these family dynamics as our expert panel shares valuable insights on key issues including:

  • Sorting through emotions to get to the legal issues
  • How family dynamics play into family conflict and strategies for responding to them
  • Managing conflicts of interest and support people
  • Dealing with capacity concerns
  • Facilitating effective communication


Brian Cohen, Gowling WLG (Canada) LLP
Mary Birdsell, Justice for Children and Youth
​Lisa Barazzutti, Barazzutti Strybos

Moderator: Michael Segal, Barrister and Solicitor

12:00PM –1:00PM


Expand Cultural Competency and Enhance Client Services​

The divide between lawyer and client can, at times, be vast.  Most clients have different backgrounds and life experiences than that of their lawyer.  These differences can often contribute to misunderstandings, miscommunications and hamper effective representation.

Cultural competency is an on-going process that runs deeper than cultural awareness and cultural sensitivity. Increase your skill set to create an environment which provides the best services that are appropriate and accessible to a diverse range of clients, and work effectively in cross-culture situations. Develop new practice skills to help bridge these gaps and to better serve your clients today.


Program Chair:  
Charlene Theodore, 
1st Vice President of the Ontario Bar Association, and Counsel, Ontario English Catholic Teachers' Association

Program Speaker:
Sujata Warrier,
PhD, Battered Women’s Justice Project