Navigating Cross-Border and Multijurisdictional Estate Matters

Most individuals consider purely domestic estate matters to be complex and challenging.  Add another country into the equation and the legal complexity quickly multiplies. If your trust and estate law matter involves assets, beneficiaries or representatives in another jurisdiction or international locale, O'Sullivan Estate Lawyers can step in and provide solid legal direction.

O'Sullivan Estate Lawyers is well known in the trust and estate profession for complex high-net worth planning and administration with a multijurisdictional and cross-border focus. Many of our mandates involve advising clients with legally significant ties to more than one jurisdiction, including the U.S., the U.K and many European Union countries. Please see our Advisory Will and Estate Planning Considerations for Canadians with U.S. Connections. A sample of the variety of matters we have handled involving multijurisdictional and cross-border issues can been seen under Resources in Representative Mandates. Many of these estate planning situations involve multiple will planning and incapacity planning across borders, topics on which our firm founder Margaret O'Sullivan has written several leading articles. Please see our Advisory Multijurisdictional and Separate Situs Will Planning and Multijurisdictional and Separate Situs Powers of Attorney for the Mobile Client and the article Multijurisdictional Succession Checklist.

We are frequently involved with estate and trust administrations involving a U.S. state or other jurisdiction. Please see our advisory Cross-Border Canada-U.S. Estate Administration Highlights. Our firm members have presented at many international conferences and written papers on many topics on multijurisdictional and cross-border issues, and our firm blog frequently highlights these issues, including such matters as the European Succession Regulation and its impact on Canadians with an EU connection. Our firm founder Margaret O'Sullivan recently chaired the Planning Panel for the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners Global Congress held in Vancouver in 2018 which brought together delegates from over 50 jurisdictions and six continents to explore many of the key issues shaping and impacting family inheritance and succession planning at the global level.

The Complications of Cross-Border and Multijurisdictional Estate Matters

Families and assets are increasingly on the move around the globe. Family members may reside far apart from each other, with common ties to assets and relatives in a home country. Members of high net worth families may live locally but own real estate, businesses and other assets in various countries.

These situations require careful estate planning and administration. Laws, legal processes, timelines, taxation, reporting requirements and appointments of fiduciaries can differ vastly from one country to the next. If you are a testator, beneficiary or legal representative involved in planning or administering an estate that falls under a jurisdiction outside of your own, it's critical to seek skilled legal advice.

A Solid Reputation Backed By Experience

Our lawyers have worked with scores of families in Toronto, Ontario, throughout Canada, the United States and globally. We focus exclusively on trust and estate law and can help you through planning, administration and court applications involving cross-border and multijurisdictional matters.

Reliable Solutions and Solid Legal Guidance

Over the years, we have advised numerous clients in high-value, complex and cross-border/ multijurisdictional estate matters. As recognized thought leaders in trust and estate law including cross-border and multijurisdictional succession issues, our lawyers can efficiently identify key issues and needs. We can then coordinate an effective plan with financial advisors, tax specialists and legal advisors in other jurisdictions.

Our role is to ensure a smooth estate planning or estate administration process aimed at:

  • Finding solutions and opportunities amidst conflicting international succession laws in planning your estate and for incapacity, including the use of separate situs wills and powers of attorney or their equivalent where appropriate
  • Navigating each country's or jurisdiction's legal processes
  • Minimizing probate, tax implications and unnecessary costs and expenses
  • Transferring property efficiently and cost-effectively

Consult With Our Lawyers

Our lawyers can assess your needs and provide a solid path forward for your cross-border or multijurisdictional estate matter. To arrange an appointment, send us an email.