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  • Writer's pictureErin Watson, J.D.

Making Sense of Ontario's Estate Rules: What You Need to Know About the Three-Year Vesting Period

In Ontario, the Estates Administration Act includes a provision known as the "automatic vesting" provision (section 9), which stipulates that real property that is not distributed among the beneficiaries within three years after the death of the deceased will automatically vest in the beneficiaries.


However, section 10 of the EAA states that nothing in section 9 derogates from the rights of an executor, administrator with the Will annexed, or trustee under a Will. This means that the intention of the testator expressed in their Will always takes precedence over section 9.


If the Will contains an express or implied power of sale and a power to postpone conversion, and the real property forms part of the general residue, section 9 will not apply, and the automatic vesting will not occur. However, if the real property is specifically gifted, the application of section 9 will depend on the terms of the Will, and the intention of the testator.


It is important to note that while section 9 provides for automatic vesting, it may require a court application to obtain a Vesting Order if the terms of the Will override the provisions of the Estate Administration Act. A Vesting Order is an equitable remedy that requires the court to exercise its discretion to make the order and ensure a fair and just outcome. Once a Vesting Order is granted, the party who obtained it can take steps to register the Order on title to the property.


For additional information on this or any other Estate-related matter, feel free to contact our E is for Estate team. Contact Us HERE


Erin Watson, J.D. E is for Estate



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