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Farris LLP: Vancouver's Law Firm

Private Wealth

Farris’ Private Wealth practice encompasses business succession, estate planning, wealth preservation, and charitable endeavours. Entrepreneurs, high net worth individuals, executives, and philanthropists turn to us for our comprehensive knowledge, expertise, and guidance in these areas. Working as a team with our clients’ financial advisors and accountants, we deliver service and results.

Individual Estate Planning and Wills

The accumulation of significant wealth can create complex legal and tax issues as well as tricky inter-personal situations. Our wealth management group excels at designing and implementing comprehensive yet flexible plans that are consistent with our clients’ goals and values, maximize tax-efficiency, and minimize risk and distress. In the face of major financial events in our clients’ lives – such as the sale or purchase of a new business, a divorce, an inheritance - we provide counsel and guidance.

Family Business Transition and Succession Planning

Our wealth management group regularly advises family-owned and other closely held businesses on the structuring and restructuring of their enterprises to achieve family goals in a tax-efficient way.  We have expertise in inter-generational transitions as well as transitions to outsiders and management in a broad range of industries and endeavours. We facilitate these transitions through corporate reorganizations, shareholders’ agreements, the settlement of trusts, management agreements, and other arrangements. With significant expertise in business law and tax, we can also draw on other professionals in the firm in overlapping areas, including real estate and matrimonial law, in order to fashion comprehensive solutions.


The private trust is one of the most flexible tools available to our clients to assist them in their personal and business affairs. Our trusts practice includes the creation not only of family trusts to assist in the inter-generational transfer of wealth, but also blind trusts, voting trusts, trusts for disabled beneficiaries, immigration trusts, spendthrift trusts, and asset protection trusts. Our trusts practitioners are also experienced in establishing charitable trusts as a tool for our philanthropist clients.

We regularly advise clients on the many uses of private trusts in the tax planning context, including income-splitting, probate fee and property transfer tax avoidance, inter-provincial rate shopping, accessing multiple capital gains exemptions, and other tax planning opportunities.

Our experience also extends to ongoing advice to the trustees and beneficiaries of existing trusts. 

Our trust expertise is frequently called upon in matrimonial planning and dispute resolution. And our litigation department is adept at trust litigation where the trust may be used as both a defence and a weapon. 

Estate & Trust Litigation

Farris lawyers are experienced in appearing before all levels of courts and a wide range of administrative tribunals. Our lawyers often act as counsel in arbitrations and mediations.

Family Law

We have considerable depth in the area of family law, and advise our clients pro-actively on various risk mitigation strategies in the context of matrimonial discord, including the use and interpretation of marriage agreements, cohabitation agreements, and trusts.

Please also see our Family Law section.   

Charities and Philanthropy

Planned giving is often an integral part of personal wealth planning. We advise on the legal and tax implications of philanthropy, the establishment of charitable entities such as foundations and other methods of planned giving. We also regularly advise charities on administrative, compliance, and structuring matters. 

Wealth Preservation

Our group has the knowledge and expertise to assist in the preservation of individual wealth in the face of attack from creditors, future heirs, and others, including the establishment of trusts, advising on pre-nuptial agreements and other strategies. 

Our Lawyers

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Sally Dennis Partner sdennis@farris.com 604 661 9327
Stephanie J. Daniels Partner sdaniels@farris.com 604 661 1749
Aaron P.G. Dow Partner adow@farris.com 250 869 3858
Ron Dueck Partner rdueck@farris.com 604 661 9395
Jeffrey J. Kay, Q.C. Managing Partner jkay@farris.com 604 661 9321
Anna Laing Partner alaing@farris.com 604 661 1748
Ross Langford Partner rlangford@farris.com 250 869 3868
Timothy Louman-Gardiner Partner tlouman-gardiner@farris.com 604 661 1729
Peter C.T. MacPherson Partner pmacpherson@farris.com 250 869 3881
Rebecca M. Morse Partner rmorse@farris.com 604 661 1712
Dominic A. Petraroia, Q.C. Managing Partner, Kelowna dpetraroia@farris.com 250 869 3851
Jay Sujir Partner jsujir@farris.com 604 661 1704
Krista L. Isberg Associate kisberg@farris.com 604-661-9345
Emma McArthur Associate emcarthur@farris.com
Amanda Winters Associate awinters@farris.com 604 661 9315