Last year, Jamaican-born Rector Eric Spence’s will was not accepted in court because it was considered clearly racist, “not only human sensibilities but also public policy”. He disinherited his daughter because she had a child with a white man, and leaving around $400,000 for his other daughter instead.
The case has now resurfaced. A three-judge panel believes that the Ontario judge overstepped the law in rejecting the man’s final wish. The judge did not have the right to challenge the validity of an “absolute, unequivocal and unambiguous” will based on third-party allegations of racism.
They added: “The court’s power to interfere with a testator’s testamentary freedom on public policy grounds does not justify intervention simply because the court may regard the testator’s testamentary choices as distasteful, offensive, vengeful or small-minded.”
Should someone’s will always be honoured, even if it’s considered offensive?