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Read the First West Law LLP  BlogS: 

  • 05/04/2022
    What Happens to Real Estate During a Divorce in Alberta?

    While divorce rates are on the decline in Canada, many of us will still face the difficulties of ending a relationship. Getting divorced requires dividing assets, including real estate and mortgages. Deciding who is entitled to what assets can be more complicated than you thought.

    It's important to seek legal counsel when going through a divorce in Alberta. The team at First West Law LLP in Calgary can help you navigate the legal process and the division of assets.

    Read about how homeownership gets divided, along with different types of real estate here.


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  • 21/01/2022
    What Are the Grounds for Contesting an Estate?

    They say you can't pick your family, and nowhere is this more evident than in the field of estate law. Unfortunately, we all have at least one relative with whom we're not on great terms When there's a death in the family, those simmering conflicts tend to boil to the surface.

    Someone might get left out of a will and set out to challenge the estate distribution. There may be valid reasons to contest a will.

    However, to successfully contest a will you'll need to know the grounds for doing so. We'll discuss those in this article.

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  • 26/08/2021
    4 Reasons to Hire a Lawyer to Probate an Estate

    Do you wonder what will happen to your estate after you're gone? Is dealing with estate-related conflicts affecting your well-being? Well, you should know you're not alone. 

    Covid-19 was an eye-opener for citizens across Canada. A 2020 survey reported that over 30 percent of Canadians talked about properly protecting their estate during the pandemic. Yet, many of these conversations won't have accounted for a crucial step in this process. 

    If the thought of handling an estate causes you anxiety, we are there to help. This guide will highlight 4 reasons to hire a lawyer to probate an estate


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  • 21/05/2021
    Understanding Changes to the Divorce Act in Canada

    The divorce rate in Canada is going down, falling to six divorces for every 1,000 married persons in 2016. 

    Yet it remains one of the most emotionally draining experiences a person can go through. Antiquated and confusing laws made the process worse.

    Over the last few years, lawmakers have changed terms and added new conditions, to make divorce fairer. Many of these new conditions came into effect on March 1, 2021.

    Get the facts you need, and you can start your divorce process today. Here is a quick guide to understanding the recent changes to Canada’s Divorce Act.


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  • 25/02/2021
    Having Hard Conversations: How to Cover Estate Planning Basics With Your Parents

    As your parents get older, it's important for them to have a plan in place for end of life planning or in case anything should ever happen to them. If your parents don't have a will or other estate planning basics in place, it’s crucial to begin broaching the subject. The conversation is quite difficult as it is, so you'll want to proceed with empathy and patience. Many parents might even claim you're too worrisome or think they're incompetent, but this isn't the case. By having their affairs in order when they pass, your parents can ensure their wishes are met and provide direction for loved ones.

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  • 27/11/2020
    The Divorce Process in Alberta: The Steps to Follow and When You Need a Divorce Lawyer

    If you are thinking of filing for divorce, you likely don't know where to begin. The end of your marriage may be emotional and overwhelming, and figuring out a legal process on top of the personal changes you're experiencing simply adds to this stress.

    If this sounds like your situation, you're in the right place. This article will help you understand the divorce process in Alberta, what to expect, and why you should consider getting a divorce lawyer to help you navigate the process.

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  • 17/07/2020
    5 Reasons to Give a Real Estate Lawyer Property Surveys Before Selling

    Are you thinking of selling your Calgary property soon? Getting a home ready to sell is a lot of work. One thing you shouldn't neglect: a real property report (RPR), otherwise known as a survey. 

    Your real estate lawyer will be able to help you navigate the process and may be able to order the RPR for you. Keep reading to learn more about RPRs and why you need one. 

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  • 12/06/2020
    Do Your Parents Have Enduring Powers of Attorney and Personal Directives?

    It can be difficult to discuss the prospect of serious illness or age-related cognitive decline with your parents, but it will be more difficult to handle health care decisions and financial matters if these conversations don’t take place in advance, while your parents have mental capacity to make a plan. Do your parents have enduring powers of attorney and personal directives? Do you understand the difference between the two, and the importance of having both an enduring power of attorney (“POA”) and a personal directive (“PD”) in the event of a parent’s incapacity? If you do not know the answers to these questions, you should read on for more info, or reach out to our team of experienced wills and probate lawyers in Calgary.

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  • 05/03/2020
    When Should You Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?

    There are a number of ways that a person can be injured due to someone else’s fault. Motor vehicle accidents (car, truck, motorcycle, bicycle), ATV accidents, dog bites, and “slip or trip and falls” happen all the time. Some cause minor injuries that heal relatively quickly. Others cause serious injuries, permanent impairment, and losses that can last a lifetime. Given that there are many types of personal injury claims and that the severity of injuries can range so much, how do you know when you should hire a personal injury lawyer?

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  • 12/02/2020
    Understanding the Difference Between Legal Separation and Divorce

    Calgary lawyers at First West Law LLP understand that each relationship is unique, and everyone’s situation is different. By that same token, we take the approach that the end of each relationship is also unique. Needs, wants, and goals on breakdown of a relationship will vary from person to person and over time. When a relationship breaks down, it is important to take stock of your needs, assess your options, and develop a plan. One significant consideration is deciding whether a legal separation or divorce is best for your situation.

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  • 30/04/2019
    4 ways homebuyers can prepare to meet with their real estate lawyer

    Are you planning to purchase a home? Is so, you should know that meeting with a real estate lawyer will ensure that your home purchase is legal, binding and in your best interest. But to accomplish this, they’ll need you to provide them with certain key information and documents. Since real estate deals are time-sensitive, it’s important to be prepared. Here are four types of things your real estate lawyer will need from you.

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  • 11/04/2019
    Probating a will in Alberta: Initial Steps

    Probating is the legal process of validating a will and giving an executor the authority to act on the deceased’s behalf. This process is required in most circumstances, and you should consult a probate lawyer even if the will is not complicated. While in some circumstances a will may not need to be probated; only a lawyer can tell you for certain.

    For their protection, banks, trust companies and other financial institutions need proof that an individual is the executor of an estate before turning over funds to them. If there’s no will, assets are divided in accordance with Alberta estate law, and family members can apply to be administrators of the estate.

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  • 26/03/2019
    Have your parents signed an enduring power of attorney yet?

    Appointing someone under an enduring power of attorney means authorizing a person (usually a family member or friend) to make financial decisions and transactions on your behalf if you become mentally incapacitated. It is a wise precaution and one everyone, especially seniors, should seriously consider. 

    If you have elderly parents and they haven’t yet begun to think about appointing an enduring power of attorney, you should begin discussing the subject with them. Here’s what you need to know.

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  • 26/03/2019
    Why you need to update your Real Property Report before listing your house

    Are you putting your house on the market? Then ensuring that your Real Property Report (RPR) shows the current improvements should be at the top of your to-do list. When an RPR isn’t up to date, real estate transactions can be delayed or even jeopardized, and sellers can incur significant expenses that they were not contemplating.

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  • 19/09/2018

    A Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) is a popular and useful way to save for a child’s or grandchild’s post-secondary tuition, including government matching contributions known as the Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG). But what happens if the RESP subscriber dies. Is the RESP safe? Will the intended beneficiary receive the funds? Will the CESG portion be lost?

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  • 02/11/2016
    Case Comment: -- Pullen (Re), 2016 ABQB 421

    This blog post is intended to help executors and beneficiaries appreciate the variety and multitude of issues that can affect a probate application and administration of an estate. This potential for issues is well demonstrated in the recent Court of Queen’s Bench decision in Pullen (Re). The post will analyze three issues featured in the Pullen decision- (1) interpretation of contracts that impact the distribution of the estate, (2) executor compensation and (3) who is responsible for the legal fees of estate litigation- to emphasize the importance of consulting a wills and probate lawyer in Calgary from First West Law LLP when administering an estate.

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