Understanding & Accommodating Mental Illness

Understanding & Accommodating Mental Illness

January 31st has been designated ‘Bell Lets Talk Day’ in an attempt to recognize that we as a society need work on acknowledging mental illness. Mental illness is as real as physical illness. Just like physical illness, mental illness comes in all shapes and sizes and does not discriminate against who it attacks. Statistically, in any given year 1 in 5 people in Canada will personally experience a mental health problem or illness. The Canadian Mental Health Association website shares other startling statistics with respect to how common mental illness is amongst us. Initiatives like ‘Bells Lets Talk Day’ help reduce the stigma and resulting discrimination attached to mental illness. However, the reality is understanding and acceptance of mental illness in our society is not what it should be…. yet.

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Who Should I Choose as My Executor?

Who Should I Choose as My Executor?

In Nova Scotia, your Executor is the person you designate in your Will to be legally responsible for distributing your assets to the beneficiaries you name after you’ve died. They’re also technically responsible for handling your remains. It is a very important role with heavy financial consequences attached to it, as such it is important to select someone who is up to the task.

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Prevent Heartache By Having a Lawyer Review Your Commercial Lease Part II – Leasehold Improvements

Prevent Heartache By Having a Lawyer Review Your Commercial Lease Part II – Leasehold Improvements

Leasehold improvements include anything that needs to be done to the space that you are going to lease in order to make it fit for your purposes. Your lease should outline who is responsible for making the changes, who is paying for the changes, and what the timeline is for getting it done. It should also make clear who is the decision maker with respect to the leasehold improvements. For example, if new flooring is to be laid do you get to decide the specific type or does the landlord.

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What is an Executor and what are their duties and job?

What is an Executor and what are their duties and job?

When a person creates a Will in Nova Scotia the two main functions of the Will are to determine which assets each beneficiary will receive and to appoint the person who is in charge of following the instructions in the Will. The Executor is title given to the person whose job it is to follow the instructions in the Will.

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So What is Incorporation Anyway?

So What is Incorporation Anyway?

The topic comes up all the time. Are you incorporated? Are you going to incorporate? When is the right time to incorporate? But a large number of small business owners don’t know what incorporation actually means, or why they should or shouldn’t incorporate.

 

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What do I have to do to before I draft my Will and Estate Planning Documents?

What do I have to do to before I draft my Will and Estate Planning Documents?

A common question we get when people contact us about starting the process of drafting their Will or estate planning is “What do I have to do before I come in?”  The short answer is nothing.  At our firm, when we help people with their estate planning we don’t require any sort of forms to be filled out in advance, nor do you have to compile a laundry list of bank account numbers or balances

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What is involved in Probate in Nova Scotia?

What is involved in Probate in Nova Scotia?

In Nova Scotia, Probate is required if a person dies without a Will, if the Will is contested, or if there are assets within the estate which require probate (e.g. owning land or registered assets). Put simply, probate is the formal process where the court determines who will administer the estate, who the beneficiaries are, and which assets each beneficiary receives. 

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Who gets it when your gone? Dealing with your home when you pass away.

Who gets it when your gone? Dealing with your home when you pass away.

While it may seem like a morbid topic of conversation, it is an important one to have. What happens to your home when you die? In Nova Scotia, typically, when the first spouse to passes away, the home simply stays with their surviving spouse. This happens because most spouses hold their homes as "joint tenants".  This is only applicable in situations where both spouses are on title to the home, and listed as joint tenants. This designation is listed on the parcel register for your property and you can have a lawyer find this information for you if you are unsure of your current situation.

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Your To-Do list as 'Closing Day approaches.

Your To-Do list as 'Closing Day approaches.

If you are like many lucky Nova Scotians buying or selling a home, you are working with a great team of professionals who will help you through the process. Your mortgage broker, real estate agent and lawyer will all help make the process as smooth as possible. There are a few things that you will need to do as well.

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Looks Matter: How Professional Staging and Photography can help you sell your home in Nova Scotia

Looks Matter: How Professional Staging and Photography can help you sell your home in Nova Scotia

Much of a home buyer's initial search happens online these days. This means that the pictures and videos of your home online are the things that will capture someone's attention and impress them enough to see the home in person. You want to make the most of this opportunity. Virtual tours have also become a great way to show off your home. Professional home staging and photography are a great way to accomplish this.

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The 411 on legal Cannabis use in Halifax, NS

The 411 on legal Cannabis use in Halifax, NS

As of October 17, 2018, the use of cannabis will be legal all across Canada. The rules for having and using cannabis are different in each province. Here are a few notable points for Nova Scotia, particularly when it comes to using it where you live…

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Getting Ready to Move? Here are some dos and don'ts of having a Yard Sale.

Getting Ready to Move? Here are some dos and don'ts of having a Yard Sale.

A yard sale can be a great way to declutter and reduce the amount of stuff you have to move when you move out of your home. It is also a great way to make a little extra cash in the process. Here are some tips for making the most of your yard sale in Nova Scotia.

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Video Game Addictions lead to Separation & Divorce

Video Game Addictions lead to Separation & Divorce

A recent article highlighted the fact that in the UK, over 200 divorce petitions have referenced the popular video game Fortnite as one of the reasons for divorce. As silly as it sounds that people would get divorced over a video game, digital addictions are causing more and more problems.

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How to Sue Someone In Small Claims Court in Nova Scotia

How to Sue Someone In Small Claims Court in Nova Scotia

In Nova Scotia small claims court is a great option for getting a ruling on issues that involve amounts totalling less than $25,000. The two main benefits are that A) every step of the way it’s quicker and B) for most people it ends up being significantly less expensive, yet you still end up with an enforceable judgement from a Nova Scotia Court.

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How to Defend A Small Claims Court Action

How to Defend A Small Claims Court Action

To start a small claims court action a claimant has to file paperwork at the court. The next required step is to serve the documents on the defendant. This means they either have to pass the documents to the defendant themselves or hire or arrange for someone else to do so. If you are never personally served with documents than it’s a safe bet there is no lawsuit against you.

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Can I Represent Myself In Small Claims Court in Nova Scotia?

Can I Represent Myself In Small Claims Court in Nova Scotia?

The short answer is yes, you can represent yourself in Nova Scotia Small Claims Court. In fact, in Canada you can represent yourself all the way up to the Supreme Court of Canada. However, the limit for small claims court in Nova Scotia is $25,000 so if the claim you’re involved in is approaching that amount it may be well worth your money to use the expertise of a lawyer to represent you.

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How to Make an Adverse Possession Claim in Nova Scotia

How to Make an Adverse Possession Claim in Nova Scotia

When you make an Adverse Possession Claim that means you are saying that you believe you should now be the legal owner of a particular piece of land, replacing the person whose name is currently on the deed. The first step is determining whether you meet all the requirements. In general, you must have possessed the land for a period of 20 years in a manner that is open, continuous, notorious, adverse, and exclusive. For more details on this criteria read our blog “Squatters Rights and Adverse Possession”. If you believe you meet all theses criteria then you are in a position to make a claim

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Squatters Rights and Adverse Possession in Nova Scotia

Squatters Rights and Adverse Possession in Nova Scotia

You’ve been using a piece of land in Nova Scotia that you know is not your own for years and you’re wondering how to get legal title to this land. People commonly refer to this area of law as squatters’ rights, lawyers call it “adverse possession”. In simple terms, in order to have any legal right to someone else’s land you must have used the land in an open, notorious, exclusive, and adverse manner for 20 years.

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Halifax Public Property is now officially a No Smoking zone.

Halifax Public Property is now officially a No Smoking zone.

Halifax has rolled out some major changes to By-Law N-300, also known as the Nuissance By-Law. These changes are in the form of a city-wide smoking ban. The By-Law amendments, also known as the “Respecting Smoking” amendments are in effect as October 15, 2018.  They cover all smoking and vaping, including both tobacco and cannabis.

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Can Sharing Emotional Labour Save my Relationship?

Can Sharing Emotional Labour Save my Relationship?

I see many people in my office whose relationships have broken down. Although every couple and every situation are unique, there are some common themes that emerge. Whether clients label it or not, “emotional labour” is at the heart of many disputes and a significant cause in relationship breakdown. But what is emotional labour?

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