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Monday, July 10, 2017

Ontario court confirms that publishing notice to creds & claimants online protects executors

Many of the readers of this blog who are executors and estate administrators have chosen to click on the link for NoticeConnect that is found on this blog. Using that service allows executors and administrators to place the traditional estate announcement about creditors and claimants online instead of in the newspaper.

Executors and administrators who advertise for creditors and claimants are protected from personal liability if unknown debts surface later on after the estate has been distributed. Although advertising this way is not required by law, many executors and administrators choose to do so in order to obtain that legal protection.

Until now, advertising for creditors was always done in the local newspaper. Given the fact that newspaper circulation has been declining for years and that most people now use the internet to find information, it makes sense to ask whether the method of advertising should be updated.

The owners of NoticeConnect have recently obtained a judgment of the Ontario Superior Court that confirms that using the online method of advertising is just as effective as using the traditional newspaper. In this case, the court was fully behind this new advancement in estate methods. I'm sharing this with you because this is the first time that a Canadian court has given this ruling and I expect it will come as good news to those of you who are looking for a less expensive and more effective vehicle for the estate advertisement.

Below is an excerpt from their recent press release:

COURT CONFIRMS THAT PUBLISHING A NOTICE TO CREDITORS ON NOTICECONNECT.COM PROTECTS ESTATE TRUSTEES FROM LIABILITY

Toronto, ON – On Friday July 7, Superior Court Justice Barbara Conway confirmed in a written judgment that an estate trustee who had published a notice to creditors on NoticeConnect.com “is entitled to the liability protection provided by s. 53(1) of the Trustee Act.” Mills & Mills LLP brought the application and successfully argued the motion.

This is an important legal precedent because advertising for creditors on NoticeConnect.com costs only
$130. Advertising for creditors in print newspapers costs hundreds or thousands of dollars and is less effective at reaching creditors.

Estate trustees are supposed to advertise for creditors when administering an estate to protect themselves from liability.


“We’re thrilled with this decision. It’s now affordable for every estate trustee in Ontario to advertise for creditors and protect themselves from personal liability”, said Patrick Hartford, co-founder of NoticeConnect. “This is a win for access to justice.”

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