Bio:

Originally from the prairies, Lesley Russell completed her law degree at the University of Manitoba and was called to the Manitoba bar in 1996. After completing her articles in Winnipeg, Lesley decided to take some time to work and travel overseas. A one-year endeavour turned into a 10-year hiatus during which Lesley lived and worked in New Zealand, Australia and Japan. After returning to Canada, Lesley settled in the Lower Mainland (rather than return to the prairie winters). She eventually returned to the legal profession, initially as a notary public, practicing in Burnaby for 3 years. She then obtained her call to the British Columbia bar in 2016 and worked with a small Burnaby firm for nearly 5 years.

Lesley joined CBM Lawyers in February 2021 as a wills and estates solicitor. She is dedicated to helping her clients understand their planning options and working with them to create estate plans that are tailored to their individual needs and goals. In estate administration matters, in addition to advising and assisting clients in probate applications and the administration of estates and trusts, Lesley strives to help make a difficult time a little bit easier.

Outside of the office, Lesley spends her time with her family and friends, enjoys being outdoors and throwing impromptu dinner parties, and likes to cook, though is not particularly good at following recipes.


Representative Experience:

Lesley’s estate planning experience includes:

  • estate planning and wills for blended families
  • specialized trusts for children, spousal trusts, disability trusts, trusts for adults
  • contentious estate plans involving unequal division or disinheritance
  • charitable gifts
  • specific bequests of real estate and personal property
  • dual wills (ie separate wills for private business and non-business assets)
  • advising on and preparing joint partner trusts, alter ego trusts, bare trusts
  • advising on the pros and cons of changing ownership of property to joint tenancy

Lesley’s estate administration experience includes assisting clients with estates involving:

  • homemade wills, marked wills, a copy of a will, and missing wills
  • multiple, missing and foreign executors
  • minor, incompetent and foreign beneficiaries
  • insolvency or insufficient assets
  • no will (ie an intestate estate)


Professional Membership and Education:

  • Call to the Bar in British Columbia, 2016
  • LLB, University of Manitoba, 1995
  • BA (Hons), University of Manitoba, 1992